Brunswick electorate: Garrett family history

On Saturday, 2 February, I was delighted and proud to hear my beautiful aunt Jill Manton, a historian by trade, address the Brunswick Community History Group about the six generations of my family who have lived in Brunswick.

Supported by me and my father, Graeme, my aunt told the story of the Garrett family in Brunswick, using pictures, a PowerPoint presentation and oral history, beginning with photos and stories of my great-great-grandmother, Sarah Garrett, and her siblings and cousins. We heard about and saw pictures of the houses my great-grandfather Ralph Garrett and my grandfather Jack Garrett built in West Brunswick, and the tailor shop in Sydney Road in which my great-grandmother worked until my grandmother passed away at a young age, when my great-grandparents moved in to help raise my father and his sisters.

We heard a very emotional tape of my grandfather speaking some 30 years ago about his childhood days in Brunswick, when they had horses and carts and the suburb was still covered in fields. There was a terrific turnout at the event, including
people who had worked at my family’s business, Ralph Garrett and Sons, in Melville Road some decades ago.

A week later I was further moved when attending the 60-year celebration of the creation of the Brunswick Rotary Club. I had not realised, but I learnt that my grandfather Jack was a founding member of that organisation. There was a beautiful photo of him and his fellow Rotarians who had set up that particular charter, which my family had not seen and which was a great gift. In particular I thank my aunt Jill for her work.

Hansard, 2013