It was a bit like Orson Wells “War of the Worlds” radio broadcast.
I was fishing when the earthquake struck so I didn’t feel or hear it.
The funny thing was that everything went quiet, no bites on the line and the resistance was stronger when we pulled up the anchor.
We turned on the radio and heard about an earthquake in Newcastle.
It was a bit like Orson Welles’ “War of the Worlds” radio broadcast. I thought it was a radio drama and not real.
As soon as I got home, I realised that my job was to offer any help Maitland could give to Newcastle. We seconded a town planner, Richard Bennett, to Newcastle Council to help with all the surveying.
The call went out through all the service clubs in Maitland to assist in fundraising for Newcastle.
In this photo, I am putting a cheque from Maitland Council into a Lions fundraising bucket to encourage donations.
Much has changed in local government in 25 years. The building planning and standards take earthquakes more seriously now as does the building industry.
I think this will minimise damage caused by future earthquakes.
I am still Mayor of Maitland and I still haven’t caught any more fish.
Then 49 year old Mayor of Maitland, Nelson Bay