The Chairperson’s Report reflects the period 1 January to 31 December 2020. This is line with the Constitution, which prescribes an operating year as a calendar year, with an AGM before 31 March the following year.
Aims and area of focus
The geographical area that involves the Hermanus History Society Greater stretches from Voelklip to Fisherhaven. Research has been carried out in much of this area over a number of years.
Briefly the aims of the Society expressed in the constitution are to bring the history of the area ‘alive to residents and visitors’, to disseminate information, collect and preserve historical resources and collaborate with relevant bodies engaged in activities compatible with Society’s aims.
Committee: Angela Heslop (Chair); Robin Lee (Secretary); Michael Clark (Treasurer); Blaise Jones (representing the Overstrand Heritage and Aesthetics Committee); Storm Kreusch and Marinda Wilmans
Committee Meetings: The Committee met twice during the year.
Membership: as of 31 December 2020 we had a membership of 93 persons. Activities this year have included 2 members meetings.
Correspondence: Correspondence has been maintained with members who have received 4 newsletters, benefactors, and the media and in response to queries received. The chairperson is a member of Historic Publications of South Africa (HiPSA), previously The Van Riebeeck Society. Our library receives their publications
There have been 2 members meeting one of which was the Eight Annual General Meeting accompanied by presentation given by Annalize Mouton. Dr Sean Fields presented in January.
Robin Lee has given 3 history presentations as part of the U3A meetings.
Articles and books published:
17 articles published in Village News: 3 articles published in The Heritage Portal. For Keeps written by Robin Lee has sold 500 copies.
Holdings have increased to approximately 115 books, although not many loans taken. The Library is based in the chairperson’s house, and SANTA Bookshop has agreed to house our books for loan purposes. Members requiring a revised book list may contact the chairperson.
The website is fully operational and revisions have been added to access stories more easily and a search key has been inserted, and is updated at least monthly. Both articles and website have been a source of enquiries, which have then been handled by Committee members.
People have been reading and responding to this source of information and the article material is now transferred to the website too. There have been 31 posts this year with reactions from 5500 viewers.
Major projects ongoing: The project: ‘implementation of the Group Areas Acts in Hermanus and their relevance to the present serious problems faced’. Has been on hold due to Covid regulations.
Activism: objections to applications for extension of licensing hours at premises in Long Street postponed due to Covid regulations; (ii) successful objection to additional floor and more parking bays at 28 High Street, that are inconsistent with pedestrianisation of the street.
History Boards and Plaques: Mostly in good order and the municipality have allocated R10.000 to maintaining the plaques and 2 history boards. The history board structure at Die Gang has been replaced as it had been blown over by gales. The other board on the Hermanus Pieter’s plain has been replaced too.
2020 has been necessarily quiet and we have various zoom meetings planned. I thank the committee for their continued work.
Next reporting period:
This will cover the period January- December 2021.
Next Annual General Meeting: March 2022, a notice will be circulated.
Angela Heslop: Chairperson