Two bushwalkers were recognised with the 2019 Chardon Award at the Bushwalking NSW (BNSW) AGM on 20 August. See the notes below for comments on these worthy recipients; Jim Callaway and Linda Groom. In 2017 BNSW established the Chardon Award to recognise bushwalkers who have made a special contribution to bushwalking.
LINDA GROOM notes
Linda comes from a Queensland bushwalking family who studied at the University of Queensland before moving to Canberra around 1975. Since then, she has been a very active walker in Canberra Bushwalking Club where, among other things, she has served two terms as President but now is the current Walks Secretary. She has been honoured with life membership of CBC.
So, Linda is well recognised within CBC but now Bushwalking NSW wants to recognise her for a contribution to bushwalking with the Chardon Award. Like many others the author is well aware of the impact of feral horses in the Snowy Mountains. The difference is that Linda sought to raise awareness of this damage by a long bushwalk. She was the driving force in a highly publicised event where walkers went from Sydney to Kosciuszko National Park. Bushwalkers from towns along the route would join her for short sections to swell the numbers. Along the way these walkers spoke to the general public and where possible local MPs about the impact of feral horses in the Snowy Mountains. She presented a report of this walk as the guest speaker at the November 2018 General Meeting of BNSW. This was her second visit as a guest speaker when she spoke of exploratory bushwalks in Central Australia. A remarkable achievement and definitely worthy of recognition with this award.
JIM CALLAWAY & BNSW notes
On 30th January 2018 my wife and I represented BNSW at the Engadine Catholic Church for a Mass of Thanksgiving for Jim Callaway. We joined many other bushwalkers for this memorial service. Over many years we had known Jim as part of Bushwalking NSW (BNSW) but he eventually also became a good friend. During his time of distinguished service to BNSW he represented the Catholic Bushwalking Club and Sydney Bush Walkers. In his prime, as a bushwalker, he was known to avoid tracks to go off track at a pace that dubbed him “tearaway Callaway”.
From newsletter archives of BNSW I can say he was Treasurer from 1978 to 1987. He kept a tight rein on finances as BNSW had an historically low affiliation fee. In 1992 he was Public Officer for the very new Confederation of Bushwalking Clubs (now BNSW). Before serving as President in 1998 & 99 he was the 1997 Vice President, a role he took up again from 2000 to 2004. Records from 2004 are less clear but until the end of 2014 he was continuously on the Management Committee of BNSW (while living at Heathcote; true dedication)
Jim Callaway is definitely worth remembering as a special bushwalker since he gave more to bushwalking than bushwalking gave to him. On behalf of BNSW I would like to express our thanks for his dedicated service to BNSW.