Cleveland's Country Women's Association branch celebrates 94th birthday

Members on Anzac Day.

Members on Anzac Day.

MEMBERS of the Cleveland Country Women’s Association will celebrate the branch’s 94th birthday with lunch and cake on Wednesday, July 11.

A Help Circles was formed at Cleveland – and another at Redland Bay – with John Taylor as the first president.

Meetings were held in the School of Arts hall and attended by residents of Cleveland, Redland Bay, Wellington Point and Ormiston.

The Cleveland Circle was later disbanded and a Redlands CWA branch formed.

Meetings were later held in the Methodist Church hall until Leona Kyling, grand-daughter of early settlers to the Redlands John and Elizabeth Sherrin, donated land in Waterloo Street.

In the 1950s the QCWA Cleveland branch bought and transformed two army medical huts into a hall.

Adjacent land was bought and later sold to build the present hall, opened by Lady Flo Bjelke-Petersen in 1980.

Over the years Cleveland CWA members have supported many causes. 

Projects have included donating Christmas gifts to the women’s prison centre, helping the Cleveland Community Centre and providing school books to Redlands families.

Gillian O’Grady, a member since 1959, has served as president for years and was involved in music and drama activities. One year the group came first for their one-act play at a state competition at Rockhampton.

Mrs O’Grady with member Betty Lamb, and Hazel Griffith and Joyce Cleary, taught handcraft and bead work.

Ms Lamb said one memorable occasion was the hall being double-booked for a CWA dinner and a drama group rehearsal. 

“This was not discovered until the day,” she said. “But there’s no problem CWA members can’t solve.”

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