Once again the club was unable to record a win at any of the regattas during the season as again we lost key people who moved mainly to Melbourne for employment.The Annual Meeting was held at Brophy’s Hotel with Mr. Bechervaise in the chair. The president, Mr. Brophy, had been suffering poor health and had undertaken a world trip to recover. There were 65 members present on the evening. The report presented illustrated that the unsettled nature of the club continued into this season with more upheaval in the early part. The new committee was barely into working order when the Captain Mr. McNaughton resigned. He had received a promotion in his employment to a Government job in Williamstown. Vice-captain James Barnes stepped up into the role of Captain until he too accepted a job in Melbourne. The role of captain was and is pivotal to the success and smooth running of the shed. Both these gentlemen had given sterling service to the club, McNaughton was captain for three years and vice-captain for four years before that and James Barnes was vice-captain for three years. As a measure of the club’s esteem an illuminated address was presented to Captain McNaughton before his departure. Mr James Barnes contributed much in taking on the training and coaching of crews for regattas.
A new eight-oared boat was purchased from Edwards and Sons boat builders in Melbourne. It was obtained in time to be raced at the main regattas of the year and was christened DANIEL BROPHY in honour of the long serving president.
There was an increase in interest in the scratch racing this year with the usual officer’s trophies again being competed for and gifts donated by the Honourable Agar Wynne also being raced for. Winners of the officers’ trophies were Messrs. E. Smith (stroke), George Rayworth (3), H. Gullen (4) and G. Scott (bow). The Hon. Agar Wynne’s gifts were won by George Rayworth (stroke), George Petrie (3), R. Toy (2) and J. E. Denniston (bow). A pleasant social evening was spent in the distribution of the prizes by president Daniel Brophy and W. P. Bechervaise.
This is George Rayworth, pictured just after his 91st birthday. He was born in 1865 at Miners Rest. He went briefly to Wendouree Primary School where the fifth generation of Rayworths attend today. He started work at age eight, oiling sheep skins. At 12 he was employed at the Botanic Gardens, presumably as a gardener. He later did a coach building apprenticeship. He also established a music agency and warehouse Allan &Co.in Bridge St. He married and lived at 1018 Howitt Street.The house is still standing, little altered from when George would have lived there. They called him the Grand Old Man of cricket in Ballarat, as he was an outstanding cricketer and continued playing cricket until he was 74.He was a member of Wendouree Cricket Club and later Ballarat North Cricket Club. He belonged to the Jubilee Church all his life and contributed as choir conductor, Sunday School teacher, lay preacher and organist for twenty years. Jubilee Church is the old church on the corner of Wendouree Parade and Forest Street. He was also a very successful oarsman for Ballarat City Rowing Club for about five years. He died on the 17th of September 1956. His great grandson Bryce Rayworth also coxed and rowed for the club in the 1970’s.