Still visiting Evans after 86 yrs
SINCE she was four years old Margaret Leeson (nee Watterston) has been coming to Evans Head on holidays.
Now 90 years old, with husband Jim the same age, Margaret still makes the trek from Allora in Queensland with her family every summer.
"I first came out here in a horse and sulky with my mother and siblings.
"There were eleven of us, not including my father, who was having a holiday from the family.
"Someone had to stay at home and milk the cows," she said.
Mrs Leeson said the first place they stayed in Evans Head was in Rosolen's House in Cashmore St, which is still standing today.
"We then stayed in a house opposite Gollan's Hall which was where the Pacific Motel is today," she said.
"Then we had a canvas tent on the cricket pitch (land behind the Oak Arcade)."
Jim also came on holidays with his family as a young lad and remembers doing a lot of fishing and swimming.
"There was a wine shop where the RSL is today and it was a big old house," he said. "We made our tents by cutting a pole off the tea trees and putting a tarp over the top."
Jim remembers one year when the weather was particularly bad.
"One night we came home from the pictures and the tent had blown down and everything was wet," he laughed.
"Someone had cut the poles (holding up the tent) and it was storming like blazes.
"So we went and sat on the picture hall's steps until morning."
Daughter Jill Leeson and niece Wendy Leeson also have memories of coming for their summer holidays as children.
"There was a train that took you to the surf club," Wendy said.
"Basil Richardson was the train driver and he charged sixpence."
Jill said that four generations of the family had been coming to Evans Head each year without fail since the beginning of the twentieth century.
"There was that one year that Wendy and I missed - 1979 I think - because we went to America," she said.