What’s older than Mummulgum Hall? Joe Gibbins

ABOVE: Hall trustee Lyn O’Reilly and Joe Gibbins on the Mummulgum Hall stage.

Susanna Freymark

Joe Gibbins is older than village hall he played in, danced in and where he created lifetime memories.

Joe went to many a dance in the Mummulgum Hall.

“During the war, every fortnight, there were country dances,” Joe said.

When Joe was at Mummulgum School, students regularly came to the hall for games and other activities because there wasn’t enough room at the school, he said.

But now Joe sits in the Mummulgum Hall with one of the trustees, Lyn O’Reilly.

He reminisces about the times he spent at the hall.

“We used to pinch the power from the butcher shop to run the hall lights,” Joe said.

Joe will be sharing his stories on September 24 when there will be a celebration of the hall’s 90th. The hall is 92 years old, but the celebrations are for a 90th birthday.

Joe said the hall on the Bruxner Highway at Mummulgum is the second hall on the site.

The first burnt down.

Then in 1930, the hall that was down the road in a wet gully at Theresa Creek was dragged to the top of the rise at Mummulgum.

The timber for the hall would have been milled in the village, Joe said.

There used to be two timber mills in Mummulgum.

Joe helped his father run the dairy farm at Mummulgum. Then he trained as a meat inspector. He ran a shop for two years in Mummulgum and with his wife, Maureen, raised four children. His children live close by and will be at the hall celebrations on September 24.

“My kids came here for piano lessons,” Joe said.

“The hall was the central part of everything.’

Joe said there has always been a friendly rivalry between the halls at Mummulgum and Mallanganee.

Mummulgum was a better place according to Joe because it had the tick depot.

Everyone is welcome from Mummulgum, Mallanganee and beyond on September 24 at 1.30pm for an afternoon tea followed by a barbecue. BYO drinks.

To make life easy for the caterers, RSVP to Lyn O’Reilly on 0412 281 313.

Lyn O’Reilly and Joe Gibbins at Mummulgum Hall. Photos: Susanna Freymark
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