victorian high country huts association



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Following the blazes that began on the 8th January 2003, and swept through the entire High Country region, I contacted Fiona Magnussen to suggest we do something - it was that conversation that was the beginning of this Victorian High Country Huts Association. The path of the massive fire did not only destroyed livestock, property, fences, wildlife and our beautiful country but also numerous historical huts.

For many, these huts hold some unique treasured memories that will never be forgotten. Some of these huts are very popular, whilst others are hidden and known to just a few.

The loss of Horse Hair Hut was a huge lost our heritage. Being the oldest hut in the Alpine region, and being registered with the National Trust, it held so many historical aspects to our huts. Its construction highlighted the unique pioneering skills of our fore fathers, the style was a masterpiece of yesteryears living, the interior held the mementos of the thousands that stayed in her over 130 years and the chimney of corrugate warmed the hearts of all that boiled the billy during their stay. The importance of this hut was what mad me make that initial phone call, as my grandparents owned it, my mother was brought to is as a baby, we stayed in it when I was a child and my husband Peter and I were married in it.

We can not change what has happened, but we can join together and unite as one to ensure the safe havens that are scattered throughout the region are retained, repaired, protected, preserved and where necessary, rebuild for the many generations to follow. Ensure that they enjoy the remaining evidence of our heritage as we and the generations before us have enjoyed it.

Whilst each hut has its own story, served its own purpose, and constructed to the times of its birth, all of them join as one in a network of safe havens for those in need, the loss of just one, breaks that network and could in years to come result in the difference between life and death.

We sent out the feelers to see if there was enough interest to form the Victorian High Country Huts Association. The response has been beyond belief. People from all walks of lives and a variety of interests have made contact, from individuals to LARGE organisations.

We have to ensure the procedures and avenues are explored. We have made initial contact with Parks and DSE, who have welcomed our endeavours, and we are confident that we can work with them to ensure the future and heritage of the High County Huts are restored.

Currently we are making every effort to have a full assessment of each hut, but due to the fires still hampering the high country region, this will be a slower than wanted process.

The founding of this Association is as important to the High Country as the Huts themselves.

Following the establishment of this association and two years as President, I have resigned form the committee to pursue other commitments, but this association is dear to my heart and will continued to be supported by me and my endeavours