Who can solve a Rotary riddle? 

Rotarian Bill Wilson had stumbled across this old family passenger ticket when photographed in May.  Now, he’s looking for the Cambridge Rotary Club’s first honours board.

An old Cambridge Rotary Club honours board dating back seven decades is being sought as the club moves towards its landmark 75th anniversary.

The club was poised to commemorate its 75th anniversary early this month, but celebratory events and coverage have been postponed due to the Covid-19 lockdown.  Rotarian John Bishop hopes that Covid levels will move sufficiently to enable those events to shift to November.

“Our dinner was originally scheduled for September 9.  If we can stay on track with Covid levels, we are going to try for November, before the club heads into its December recess,” he said. “If this goes on, however, we may have to consider early next year, but realistically, anywhere between now and the middle of next year still puts us in our 75th year.”

Another club member, Bill Wilson, is putting the call out for a missing honours board that harks back to the club’s early days.

“It is the original Cambridge Rotary Club honours board … it bears the names of past presidents and Paul Harris Fellowship recipients on it, but I’m not sure exactly how many are on there,” he said. “As I understand it, the board moved with the club as we shifted around our various premises and somewhere during those years, it simply went missing.  It may well have been put away for safekeeping at some stage, and just hasn’t resurfaced.”

Bill said the timber board is about 1.5m high and about 800mm wide, and would be recognisable with the iconic Rotary wheel symbol on the top.

According to the club’s website, the Charter for the Rotary Club of Cambridge was presented on September 20, 1946, by Harold Thomas, who was also the first New Zealander to become president of Rotary International.

The club has moved its headquarters several times since then, including to Cambridge Raceway, tea-rooms in Victoria St, the Don Rowlands Centre, a staff room at Cambridge High School and the Riverside Motel, now the site of a new housing development.  Bill has enlisted the help of others and done some sleuthing himself, but nothing has turned up – and no-one seems to have an image of the board in question.

Both Bill and John are keen to see the honours board resurface in time for official events around the club’s 75th.  Anyone who may know where it is can contact Bill on 07-827 7957, or John on 027 497 1666.

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