Postcards from Wielangta

The Picture storybook ‘Postcards, from the town that disappeared’ was launched on Wednesday night in the Hartz Gallery at the Geeveston  Heritage Centre, Geeveston.  The event was attended by members of the forest and tourism sector, the archive historical society, members of the community, parents, staff and students of Sacred Heart Catholic School and special guest, Rod Hayes the son of Eric Hayes, the main character in the book.  The launch was complimented with the 16 original canvas paintings from the book and work from the grade three students from Sacred Heart Catholic School.

Rod Hayes presenting a copy of the book to Lawson and Oliver.

The book ‘Postcards, from the town that disappeared’ was first published in 2004, with the second edition in 2005. The book is based on true events and takes you on a journey with an eleven year old boy and his pony called Joe.  They travel through the forests of Tasmania to deliver mail to the town of Wielangta, before bushfires ravaged the area and the town was finally abandoned.  Set during the 1920’s, with rich evocative paintings, archival photographs and snippets of correspondence, creates a vivid historical portrait.

The grade three students from Sacred Heart Catholic School have been visiting the unique Wielangta forests for a number of years and for the past three years they have slowly incorporated the book ‘Postcards, from the town that disappeared in their exploration.  When the students returned from their camp they explored the book extensively and then completed some letter writing inspired by the fading letters within the books text. Using some natural resources they also produced a collage to complement their letters. The book, the original oil paintings and the student’s work is currently on public display in the Hartz Gallery at the Geeveston Forest and Heritage Centre.

Ben Green dresses up as Eric Hayes the main character in the book while Will looks on.

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