Old crib owners reunion planned

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Calling all Jacks Bay crib owners from the 1950s and ’60s.

Fergus Gregory, of Owaka, says he has fond memories of the fun-filled summer days at the family’s Jacks Bay crib, and would like to arrange a social gathering to reconnect with old holiday pals from those decades.

“Time is getting on and we’re all getting a bit older, so I felt it was a good time to put the word out and see if we can’t have a reunion of sorts,” he said.

The Gregory family crib was originally built pre-war by his father, Alexander, to go fishing.

“After the war, when we three children arrived, we spent every holiday at the crib – which had no power, no running water – but they were wonderful times and it was a great place for kids to have fun,” Mr Gregory said.

“We got our water from the stream behind the house, Mum baked bread in a wood-fired oven, Dad and all the other fathers went fishing almost every day to the secret fishing holes that only the men knew.

“They’d catch enough for a couple of days as we had no refrigerators.”

He said, unlike today, there was no “nipping down the road” to Owaka to get milk, meat or ice cream from the store.

“Once you got there that’s where you stayed as the roads were too rough on the cars. You learned to survive and live off the land.

“We spent our days swimming in the bay, climbing trees, building hideaways and exploring the beach.”

“Our parents didn’t worry as long as we all came home for tea.”

Mr Gregory was a well-known amateur film-maker and his son has now started the lengthy process of transferring the hundreds of metres of 16mm, 8mm and super 8 film stock to digital.

“I want to preserve it all. Dad was such a keen photographer he took lots of pictures and filmed everything that happened around us, especially the nature of the bay.

“We’ve all starred in his home movies and stories he shot for the Gore Movie Club.

“He was always dashing out with his hand-cranked 16mm movie camera to shoot the birds, seals or us kids.

“We have our childhood on film to look back on.”

Mr Gregory would like to hear from others recalling the “good old days” in the sun and surf at Jacks Bay, at ferlane@nulloutlook.co.nz or on (03) 415-8022.