Minutes of SHA AGM 2023

May 18, 2023



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1.  Welcome.


The Chairman, Philip Bromley, welcomed all members to the AGM and noted that as there were 52 present, a quorum had been attained & the meeting could proceed.

Ten apologies were received from Colin &Tookoo Martin, Klaus & Theda Wilner, Erna Wolleschak, Ian and Margaret Fairbrother, Ella Billbrough & David & Lynda Spohr.


2. Obituaries.


The Chairman reminded the meeting of the sad lossof David Guy & Hansie Swart who passed away during the year.


3. Approval of the Minutes of the AGM held on 10th of June 2022.


An amendment to the 2022 Minutes was made. UnderItem 5, Treasurer’s Report, it should read “Acceptance of the FinancialStatements was proposed by member Willemina Vd Harst-De Wet…” not De Wet Haas.Once amended the minutes were approved.

Proposed John Paisley Seconded Alf Hunter and carried.


4. Chairman’s Report


Chairman Philip Bromley reported as follows:


“The committee and I made a promise to keep the evening’s AGM as short as possible and I will try to contribute to that promise by keeping my report as concise as possible.


It would be wrong of me however to not recap what your association achieved during this past year, so I will start with that.



Monthly Talks or Outings:

Apr 2022.       The Music in Swellendam 1743 -1975, by Ms Elizabeth Marais.

May 2022.       Members partook in a guided tour of the Drostdy Museum’s  conservation building

Conservancy. These are items being held in a safe environment and currently not on display. (A period of relaxed lockdown rules)

Jun 2022.        Coenraad de Buys and the Buys people (1761-1821) by Professor Mike de Jong at our last AGM.

Jul 2022.         The Dead will Arise(The cause and effect of the Great Xhosa  

 Cattle Killing) - by PhilipBromley

Aug 2022.        Woman Prisoners of the Swellendam Drostdy Gaol - by Lauren    


Sep 2022.        Members took part in a field excursion to the historic farms of    

 Zoetendals Vallei and Nachtwacht culminating in a lunch at  



Oct 2022.         The King and I (A personal account of time spent in the Navy  

            with Prince Charles) – by Commander (Retired) DavidHarding.

Nov 2022.         The Association held its year end function with a lamb on the  

 spit at the Swellendam Bowls Club.

Jan 2023.         The Steyn Family of Rotterdam by George Steyn.


Feb. 2023         Dr. Roger Fisher presented his recommendations for the  

 Drostdy Museum’s Conservation Management Plan.

Mar 2023.         Dr. Dan Sleigh presented a talk on Die Retoer Vloot of1713 in  

 the Swellendam town hall.


We are currently engaged in the restoration of the Old Stock Dip on the corner of theR60 and the extension of Van Eeden Street. I have not included this in theabove activities as it actually falls into the 2023 / 2024 financial year.Nevertheless it is a prime example of where any profit your association makes, goes.


Other Activities:

·      SHA presented plaques to the following institutions:Swellendam Hoërskool, Bontebok Laërskool, Elim Mission Station, The Oefeninghuis, Swellendam AgriculturalShow under the Blue Plaque Scheme.

·      We continue with our website and Facebook page underCarol Podd with the generous help of Milk moon Studios.

·      The Publications committee under Hennie Steyn continues with its work, currently focussing on getting the History of Swellendam published, the translation and publishing of the new and revised English version of the Irrigation Furrows of Swellendam and Personalities andCharacters of Swellendam. This section of our committee really needs your support. There are various copies of publications which have already been published available at Bokmakiri Books. These are also a great idea forChristmas presents.

·      A Certificate of appreciation were presented to MrRudolf Plato for his contribution to civil society at the previous AGM and toMs Elsa Marais for her lifelong contribution to music ai Swellendam.


Building PlanComments:

As an interested and affected party, the SHA committee deliberated, and in some instances, visited the following sites where requests for input to HWC, for building plan applications for houses older that 60 year sand or situated within the heritage precinct of the town.



Jun 2022:     Alterations to the Swellendam Hospital.

Nov 2022:     Restoration Ackerboom Primary School Barrydale

Dec 2022:     Conversion of an old barn on the property Rheenendal into a guest    


Jan 2023:      Alterations 10 Somerset Street.

                     Construction of the Swellengrebel Mall

Feb 2023:     Alterations17 Andrew Whyte Street

                     Additions Erf 259 Barrydale.

                    Alterations Erf 1694 Barrydale.

Mar 2023:     Alterations 13 Lichtenstein Street.

                     Alterations 15 Somerset Street.

Letters ofComment.

June 2022: Receipt of threatening letters from a KhoiKhoen (leader?) Hilton Hartnick.

July 2022:   SHA registered as an Interested and Affected Party to the proposed erection  

                     of a wind farm near the current wind farm on the Bredasdorp road

Sep 2022: SHA wrote to the Municipal Manager of Swellendam Municipality expressing concern of the advent of Shothole Borer and giving them information on the plague as well as a possible treatment. This was as a result of reports reaching us that Stellenbosch has been invaded and that Swellendam’s Oak Trees are at risk                SHA wrote to the Municipality requesting that they re-whitewash the Old Stock Dip at the entrance to Swellendam fromAshton/Worcester.

 Nov 2022: At Napier’s Heritage Association’s request, SHAhas written a letter of support to the Napier Heritage and Conservation Body regarding that body's opposition of the proposed amendment to the recent zoning bylaws passed by the Cape Agulhas Municipality which if promulgated will expose resources of cultural, historical and conservation value in the municipal area to the risk of being destroyed / altered or statutorily unprotected.

   Jan 2023: Letter of objection to the fence at Erf 1611, Faure Street.


I have not included any comment on finances, as this will be handled under the next item of the agenda.


Finally, I would like to thank you as members for your support. The association is only asstrong as the support it gets from its members AND I must add here, the committee who are a dedicated team of support.


I hereby movemy report for adoption.”


Proposed TerryAndrew. Seconded Johan Kriek. Duly adopted.


5. Treasurers Report. 2022 / 2023


In the interests of the meeting time, theChairman presented the finances on behalf of the Treasurer, Alf Hunter. He stated SHA’s finances have been audited by BVSA, who do this for us on a pro bono basis as per previous years. For this the association is incredibly grateful.

The audit indicates that SHA’s finances are in sound order and had been circulated to the members prior to the meeting as per the constitutional requirement.


6. Membership Fees for the 2023 / 2024 Year


The Chairman stated that there will be no change in the Annual Subscriptions for this coming year. They remain at R150.

The Chairman reported that when bringing in speakers from outside the district we make a loss. So for meetings this year the fee for a meeting could be adjusted above the base level dependent on the expected speaker costs. There were no objections.

The Chairman asked the members to suggest  topics or speakers, all would be welcome.


7. Election of Incoming Executive Committee.


The Chairman stated in the absence of the receipt of applications for committee membership, the current Executive Committee is prepared to stand again for the next financial year ending on 31st March 2024 subject to approval by the meeting. The committee proposed is:

Alf Hunter

Carol Podd

Philip Bromley

Hennie Steyn

Johan Kriek

Margie Walker

Derek Weightman

Etienne Zeeman

Proposed by Mrs Noelene Cole and seconded by Dr Morley Thomson. This offer was accepted by the meeting.

The Chairman noted that John Paisley had indicated he was willing to join the committee but too late to allow theconstitutional notices to be circulated in time for the meeting. Accordingly the committee unanimously agreed to co-opt him onto the team for this year.


8. General / Other Business.


Mr Ken McKenzie expressed his gratitude to Philip Bromley & his fellow committee members for all they are doing & have done on behalf of the members..


9. Presentation of Awards


Carol Podd presented a Certificate of Merit to Basil May in support of which she made the following citation.


“Basil May was born and raised in Swellendam into an old establishedSwellendam family.

He describes his parents, Richard & Christine May, as champions ofthe poor,

who tried to make a difference and keep the people together.

At an early age he was sent to school at the NG Mission School and on toHigh School in Genadendal.  

He had married Josephine in 1972 and they have shared life together for over 50 years

He taught in Swellendam  and at Bonteheuwel  where he became principal.

He worked with student teachers becoming Rector of the Wesley College ofEducation and Executive Director of the Committee of Colleges of Education Rectors of SA.

He was quite sad when the teachers’ training colleges were finally abolished.

This was not an easy time for a small town in the Western Cape, the“Group Areas Act” brought much unhappiness as people were moved to the other side of the railway line, away from neighbours and friends but, following his parents’ example, Basil and Josephine worked hard for the betterment of their people.


Tragedy struck in 1975 when Desiree, Basil’s  13 year old youngest sister, was one of those in the first Swellendam bus disaster, on their way to Genadendal the lorry they were travelling in plunged into the river near Riviersonderend.  21 of the learners, 6 teachers & the bus driver all died in the incident. It was a great loss felt by the whole town.


42 years later on the anniversary of the tragedy, Basil was instrumental in the formation of the Swellendam Bursary Fund,  formed to supportthe future of talented Swellendam students, funds are raised  most particularly at the famous  annual breakfast.

For 7 years Basil also arranged courses for students from USA who  wished for overseas experience.  

Ever community minded Basil was active in the formation of the Railton Foundation and became the local coordinator, a community-based NGO providing facilities and opportunities for local people.


Although he says he has retired he is the chairman of the Pan SALBWestern Cape Provincial Language Committee.


Much of his work was outside Swellendam but he does not forget his hometown, he still plays an active part in the community where he is recognised asa wise, approachable, and generous man.


So- It gives Swellendam Heritage Association great pleasure to recognise Basil’s lifetime of devotion to the betterment of his people through his many achievements.”



There being no further business, the meeting closed 18h35





 Philip Bromley                                                          DerekWeightman

Chairman                                                                   Secretary