Above: Lt-Colonel Michael Joseph ANKETELL,
Commanding Officer 2/4th Machine Gun Battalion 8th Division WW2 – DOW 13 Feb 1942, during Battle for Singapore aged 52 years. Anketell was a WW1 Veteran.
We have successfully contacted Perth Dinghy Club who have kindly confirmed they continue to hold the Anketell Cup annually, usually during first weeks of February. We have also requested their assistance in researching the ‘beginnings’ of this event.
Initially it was thought an Anketell family member may have been a PDC member, however the club assure us this is not so.
The early 2/4th Committee Meetings were held at the Perth Dinghy Club which was then located at the river end of Barrack Street. A most convenient location. It was the decision of the then Executive Committee to negotiate with PDC and present an annual trophy in memory of Anketell.
During the relevant years 1950-1952 2/4th President was Ray Lander with Vice President Ken Tucker, Secretary W.J. ‘Pop’ Davey and Treasurer ‘Trader’ Douglas Horn.
As recorded above, 1951 was ninth anniversary of the death of 2/4th C.O. Lt. Colonel Mick Anketell. His widow, Mrs Anketell and members of 2/4th Committee were present at the race. Mrs Anketell presented the winner with the ‘Anketell’ Cup.
The Anketell Cup stands about 45cm tall, quite significant. The first year winner’s name is inscribed in 1952.
Saturday 15 February 2020 2/4th MGB President Bernie Dorizzi, his wife Pam, Secretary Sylvia Norton and Historian Cheryl Mellor accepted an invitation to attend ‘Life Members & Legends Day’ of which one of the racing highlights is the Anketell Cup race.
It is more than 10 years since the 2/4th attended the Club.
We were warmly welcomed by the lady members of the Club – their husbands all out sailing! The Club membership stands at about 100 persons plus an extensive number of junior members. The PDS Club has several generations of family members with grandparents through to grandchildren.
The Club has a magnificent location on the Swan River at Crawley, opposite UWA. The Club relocated here in 1963 from Barrack Street. They have a bar and a ‘Tuck shop’ – which provides the most important income for the Club.
It was while the Dinghy Club was located on the Swan River at Barrack Street, Perth, opposite Repatriation Department, Riverside Drive that the 2/4th Association held their monthly meetings at their facility, this would have been about 1946 or 1947.
While the PDS Club which commenced in 1903 has a magnificent Historical Collection at the current premises, they have no record of how the 2/4th came to use their Barrack Street facilities.
We discovered many 2/4th connections with Club members during the afternoon!
Below: L-R Jo-Anne McVee with her mother Lesley Devine who is a niece to WX9357 Leslie Robert ‘Les’ Rayner, of ‘A’ Company who DOW 27 February 1942 aged 24 years.
Lesley’s grandmother Emily Rayner (Les Rayner’s mother) and her husband Henry R. Rayner operated the ‘Newcastle’ Hotel at Toodyay for many years.
Emily was known far and wide as ‘Ma’ and she ran a well-behaved hotel! Bernie Dorizzi knew of ‘Ma’s reputation – no doubt his Uncles Gordon, Bert and Tom Dorizzi would have known ‘Ma’.
Prior to Toodyay, Emily and Henry were hoteliers in Marble Bar for several years.
Above: Our gracious hostesses Jo-Anne McVee and her mother Lesley Devine.
A former competitive sailor and now retired member of the Club who resides in Albany, John Erwin introduced himself. He flies from Albany once or twice a year to attend race days. His sister Beverley married Murray Cheyne in1964. WX9388 John ‘Murray’ Colville Cheyne enlisted November 1945, he was attached to Australian Army Postal Corp. Cheyne worked on Burma end of Railwaay with Green Force and was selected with ‘Rakuyo’ Maru Party for Japan. Cheyne was fortunate to be removed from draft in Singapore!
Cheyne died in 1995, however John assured me his sister Beverley lives in Mandurah and keeps good health.
During the Presentation of Pennants at the end of the day, Bernie Dorrizi was invited to present the Anketell Cup to the 2020 winner and thanked PDS Club for their warm hospitality and the most amazing afternoon tea in the southern hemisphere!
Below: PDC at the Esplanade – courtesy Perth Dinghy Club
We believe it may have been George Gwynne who was the connection between PDC and 2/4th- he had been a keen dinghy sailor pre war.
We wish members of Perth Dinghy Club safe and successful sailing!