$10,000 raised for Aitchison Cottage

The first major fundraising event for Berridale's Aitchison Cottage held recently was an outstanding success. The purpose of the event was to raise funds to go towards the restoration of one of the oldest buildings in Snowy River Shire. All together the event raised almost $10,000.

This amazing result will go a long way towards the first stage of the restoration of this beautiful and special part of our local history.

The evening was opened by Barry Aitchison, chairman of the Aitchison Cottage committee and a descendant of the family after whom the cottage is named. Barry explained his family's association with the cottage and outlined the work the proceeds of the evening would be used to fund.

Local historian and committee member, Ian Burke then announced the results of his latest research into the history of the building. Ian has discovered that in 1838 there was a blacksmithy in Berridale where the cottage now stands. Ian's research strongly supports the long held belief that the cottage dates from the earliest settlement of Berridale.

After a great meal, Nick Kirshner began auctioning the great prizes so many generous individuals and companies had donated. Thanks to them, and the enthusiastic response to Nick's exhortations, the auction raised an amazing $6,233.

Deanna Barilaro bought the major item - an all day cruise around Sydney harbour with champagne luncheon on Jeremy and Roie Paul's motor yacht.

John Barilaro M.P., kindly agreed to draw the raffle. Sharon Hole won the first prize, a bespoke metal sculpture by Barry Aitchison. The second prize, a garden design consultation, was won by Cam Hopwood. The third prize of garden solar lighting went to Tim and Pipe Greville.

The Aitchison Cottage committee were greatly appreciative of the support given by so many of the community.

They were especially delighted to welcome Mr John Barilaro, M.P., and his wife who supported the event in such a generous fashion. It was great to see Councillors Beer, Stewart-Beardsley and Wallace and their partners and two stalwarts of the cottage project, Mr Joe Vescio, General Manager of Snowy River Shire, and Lorraine Thomas, the council representative on the committee who brought their partners. It was especially wonderful to see so many people from all over the Shire and beyond who came to support a project in Berridale.

Finally, without the energy and dedication of the committee's project manager, Cheryl Mould and her husband, Colin, the evening would not have been a success it most certainly was. Thank you both from us all.

Rosemary Stewart-Beardsley, Committee Member

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