In profile: Forbes Sport and Rec Club president Peter Mackay

Warren Keep, Tony Bratton, Peter Mackay, Sid Morris and Paul Doust enjoying their time on the greens at the Forbes Sports and Recreation Club pre-lockdown.
Warren Keep, Tony Bratton, Peter Mackay, Sid Morris and Paul Doust enjoying their time on the greens at the Forbes Sports and Recreation Club pre-lockdown.

Sport, like most aspects of life, has taken a hit in the past year due to COVID-19, but there are still those at work behind the scenes.

One of these is president of the Forbes Sports and Recreation Club, Peter Mackay.

He is part of a devoted committee which plans to see that the 'Bowlie', as it more commonly known, is ready to welcome all to the club and green once COVID restrictions are lifted.

So today with little to report on bowls we talk with the likeable head of the club on his playing prowess and life in general.

Peter said he has been playing bowls for around 17 years and he will never forget his first ever competition game which was against the late 'Gaitor' Merritt.

"In bowls it is common knowledge you have a drink with your opponent, so I can tell you I was very intoxicated by the end of that day," Peter said.

"But I enjoyed the day and have since had many good times at bowls which I'm proud to say have included success, some hot and cold, to be part of two Major Triples championship teams along with runner-up in Major Singles as well as a few minor championship titles," he added.

Peter said the club at the moment consists of a lot of social bowlers while at the same time having a few who can hold their own against any opposition.

"But none the likes of the late Don Drabsch and Harold Smith along with Greg Parslow etc. They were very fine bowlers," he said.

"Wednesday morning bowls is the ideal time for anyone thinking of taking up bowls, it has become very successful and I would encourage these and anyone thinking of making a return to play. Also invite a friend or bring family members down to try our great game.

'We also have social games Thursday and Sunday and it is good to see some of these bowlers advance to play in championship games."

Not only is Peter keen to 'have a roll' he is actively intended to see the club continue in a positive manner having been treasurer for six years since being voted as current president.

"Our present board have some great ideas and plans for the future of the club but all these have been disrupted due to COVID. But we will be back better then ever," Peter added.

While Forbes is home for Peter and family they came via moves within the livestock industry.

The last to be born in Adaminaby where he attended school from the family farm two miles out of town which all eventually went under water with the expansion of Lake Eucumbene, part of the Snowy Mountains scheme.

Moving to a property 25 kilometres out of Cooma Peter furthered his education at Monaro High School before leaving school at 15 to start working in shearing sheds as a roustabout and trainee shearer in the spring/summer months.

In winter it was trapping rabbits along with general farm work for around two years.

His first full time job was working for a wool-skin and hide dealer along with buying and selling rabbit skins which was a big industry then helping many to eventually put a deposit on land.

Peter did this for around four years before joining Winchcombe Carson as a stockman, This is where he met the love of his life Anne (nee Schofield) to see the arrival of children Amanda (Thompson) and Tim.

The family later packed up and moved to Forbes with Peter appointed to run the cattle operation for Winchcombe Carson.

Here Peter and Anne welcomed David and Kristie (Wallace) into the world.

Around six years later another move was on the books with the family moving to Warren with Peter promoted to branch manager where he stayed for four years before returning to Forbes to oversee the merger and take-over of Dalgety, Winchcombe Carson and FGA, which years later became Westfarmewrs-Landmark and now Nutrien Ag.

After 22 years in company employment Peter branched out to partner Jack Woodburn in forming agents Mackay and Woodburn. That business today is Forbes Livestock where Peter is involved as a rebate agent.

"So I'm not quite retired as a lot of people think I have," a beaming Peter said.

"I have seen a lot of highs and lows in the agency game but have enjoyed working with our many clients and other agents over many years."

Peter and Anne have now been married for 56 years and have seven grandchildren in the area.