The early history of the Lakes Entrance U3A

The following was written by Mike Smark (inaugural Secretary of the Lakes Entrance U3A), and (apart from some minor editing) is re-produced in full for the interest of visitors to the Lakes Entrance U3A website.
(Trevor Renfree - January 2017)

Early 2004:
    Babs Swift started to try to form a U3A group in Lakes Entrance by addressing a number of community groups such as Probus and Senior Citizens Club.

June 2004:
    Various discussions and meetings involving Babs and Allen Swift, Carol McDonald, Trevor Renfree, Mike Smark and Allan & Gwen Tregea culminated in the calling of a Public Meeting to assess the level of interest for a U3A group.

16th August 2004:
    A Public Meeting was held at the RSL Annexe and 17 people indicated they would join if the group formed. Also a Steering Committee was elected: Babs Swift (Chair), Trevor Renfree, Judy Johnson and Mike Smark. Avril Yates from the Bairnsdale group attended and mentioned the possibility of joining and operating under the umbrella of Bairnsdale.

17th September 2004:
    The Steering Committee met and agreed that the group should be formed and decided to send a letter to Bairnsdale, asking for confirmation of arrangements for joining their group.

28th September 2004:
    The Steering Committee met and agreed to recommend to a public meeting that Lakes Entrance take up the offer of accommodation at St Brendan's Primary School and to join the Bairnsdale group.

14th October 2004:
    A Public Meeting was held and accepted the Steering Committee's recommendations that Lakes Entrance work under the umbrella of the Bairnsdale group and that the classes be held at St Brendan's. A new committee was elected: Babs Swift (Chair), Trevor Renfree (Deputy Chair), Mike Smark (Secretary), Judy Johnson (Treasurer), Allan & Gwen Tregea & Carol McDonald (General Committee). A total of 19 new members were registered.

24th January 2005:
    An Enrolment Day was held at the Baptist Church and 20 new members were registered, making a total of 39 members.

7th February 2005:
    The first class was held at St Brendan's school: “A History of East Gippsland and Lakes Entrance”, with tutor Marion Holding, and attended by 15 members.

9th March 2005:
    It was reported to the Network meeting that Lakes Entrance now had a total of 74 members.

1st April 2005:
    Babs Swift resigned the Chair due to ill health and Allan Tregea was appointed as Chairman,

16th June 2005:
    A Special Meeting of members was held at St Brendan's and it was agreed to form a separate, incorporated group immediately. The Constitution was adopted and Allan Tregea was appointed as President.

11th August 2005:
    LakesU3A website (created by Trevor Renfree & hosted by Melbourne Public Library) was launched online.

14th September 2005:
    Lakes Entrance was formally accepted into the U3A Network, with a total of 99 members.

Last updated July 26th, 2018