‘HHRSA Oration: January 4 was a Great Event for Chiltern’. An account of Angela Neustatter’s Oration and the Birthday Celebrations

Graeme Charles

Henry Handel Richardson Society of Australia Oration – Chiltern, January 4 was a Great Event for Chiltern.

The weekend of celebrations remembering the birthday of famous Australian author Henry Handel Richardson, held in Chiltern on January 3 and 4 was a truly wonderful occasion.

In excess of one hundred and forty people gathered under the marquee set up on the lawns at the Richardson family home ‘Lake View’ to hear the authors great-niece Angela Neustatter deliver the inaugural Henry Handel Richardson Society of Australia Oration on Sunday morning January 4. Angela, who is a journalist and author herself, had travelled from London for the Oration and she delighted her enthusiastic audience with her exploration of the parallel lives of HHR and her sister Lillian (Angela‟s grandmother) and the influence they have had on her own life. Of course along the way she provided many insights into her great-aunt and grandmother; such that could only come from someone within the family. Angela proved herself to be a most entertaining orator and this together with her wit, charm and effervescence ensured maximum attention from her audience.

During the picnic tea held at Lake View on the previous evening, Angela‟s brother, Patrick Neustatter, who had travelled from Virginia, USA to join the celebrations, spoke most entertainingly about HHR‟s father and his great-grandfather Dr. Walter Lindesay Richardson. Patrick maintains a long line of medical men in the Richardson family and again was able to reflect on the life of Walter Richardson from within the family. Over one hundred and twenty people enjoyed this experience, and the lovely garden at Lake View, that is a credit to all those who volunteer their time to maintain it, was an absolutely perfect setting for this memorable occasion.

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