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Wednesday 20 August 2014: Commonwealth Celebration

Commonwealth Celebration events have been funded by the Big Lottery, coincidental to the Commonwealth Games, and our club were lucky enough to receive a grant towards our trip to Mull. Our purpose was to visit the Mausoleum of Lachlan Macquarie.

Lachlan Macquarie was born in 1761 on the Isle of Ulva a small island near Mull. He followed his father into active military service and by 1781 was a Lieutenant and over 30 years service achieved the rank of Major General. His first wife died early in the marriage and he married Elizabeth Campbell of Mull in 1807. He became Governor of New South Wales in 1809. He improved the morale and physical infrastructure of the Colony and established a positive, progressive tone that saw the creation of a civilised and stable society. He is known as the Father of Australia.

He resigned finally and returned to Mull in 1822, and he died in Mull in 1824.

So this was our main purpose in visiting Mull, and it was an excited group who started our walk from Salen Bay rising past Glenaros House and over open land with fine views of the surrounding hills. We descended to some mixed woodland and then walked the road to Gruline. And walked the path which leads to the Mausoleum.

A great deal of planning had gone into this as we wanted to honour the memory of Lachlan Macquarie. A small group of Committee members went on ahead to prepare, and when the main party arrived, we hoisted our banners, the Australian and Scottish flags, and were piped into the Mausoleum area by our own piper. Our President, Linda, made a short speech, which is the subject of my blip, and we had a toast to Lachlan by the HG, and enjoyed a dram of Tobermory whisky or Austtralian wine, courtesy of Club funds.

Our celebration was joined by four Mexicans who had come also to see the Mausoleum, and a couple from Perth who were passing, saw the sign and walked up on hearing the bagpipes. They were all offered a dram or a glass, and joined in our celebration.

It was a great day.

And then we had reluctantly to head back to the Ferry and leave Mull for home.

It was a grand few days, and we had dry and warm weather throughout.

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