Perisher Historical Society
About the Society
Today, Perisher and the surrounding high country provide a wonderful playground for skiers, snowboarders, walkers and even wombats. As time moves on, however, it is easy to forget ‘the good old days’ of rope tows or no tows, lodge building, homemade skis, lace-up leather boots and riotous lodge parties. To this end, the Perisher Historical Society (PHS) has been established to capture the memories of the early days of the Perisher area.
With support and encouragement from both Perisher management and the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS), the PHS was incorporated on 6 August 2007. The aim of the Society is ‘to research, collect, document, and display the history and development of the Perisher Range including its lodges, buildings and structures and activities emanating from them’. Perisher Range means those areas within the Kosciuszko National Park associated with the access provided by Kosciuszko Road including but not restricted to the centres of Blue Cow, Guthega, Perisher Valley, Smiggin Holes, and Charlottes Pass.
Membership is open to everyone with an interest in the history of the area – individuals, families, clubs and corporations.
The PHS Committee comprises Philip Woodman (President), Judy Thomson (Vice-president), Pamela Woodman (Secretary), Ashley Blondel, Chris Brangwin, Donald Johnston and Peter Southwell-Keely together with Dave Woods (NPWS) and Peter Brulisauer (Perisher) as ex officio committee members.
Current PHS projects include establishing a historical database of the lodges in Perisher, Guthega, Smiggin Holes and Charlotte Pass, recording oral histories with Perisher ‘old timers’, the writing and publication of a book on the history of the area and building a website on which much of this material can be displayed.
The history of the Hotel Kosciusko is another long term project which has been in progress for four years. It has been astounding how much information has emerged and continues to flow in.
The Display Case in the Skitube Terminal at Perisher has been enhanced by the addition of a TV monitor on which films of the past are shown.
Already PHS has collected numerous articles of ski equipment and clothing, photographs and films, and also the minutes of Ski Council of NSW and its successor organisations from its origins in 1928. Copies of numerous publications and Ski Year Books have also been donated but there are many holes in the collections. This information is proving to be very helpful to numerous clubs approaching their 50th who are publishing their individual stories.
The PHS Annual Dinner, held at the opening of the ski season each year, provides an opportunity for members and friends to celebrate the history of the area, renew old friendships and reminisce about ‘the good old days’ and the colourful characters who made them so. The Society also publishes a newsletter twice a year.
The PHS is keen to collect stories, spoken or written, club histories, photographs and other memorabilia related to the early days of the Perisher region, with the ultimate aim of sharing this information via the PHS website, a book on the history of the area and a museum exhibiting a range of memorabilia.