New memorial to Parndana Soldier Settlers officially unveiled

The plaques on the new memorial to the Soldier Settlers at Parndana were officially unveiled on Tuesday morning, October 9, just prior to the Kangaroo Island Council meeting at the Parndana Town Hall.

The brass plaques display a map of Kangaroo Island with all 174 farms depicted and also the 186 settlers names and section numbers.

Original Parndana settlers Dianna McWhinney, Ivy Wooten, Des Johnson and John Noble unveiled the memorial, with the assistance of Barb Cooper and Helen Wurst from the Parndana Progress Association, as well as Pat Brooksby of the Parndana Museum. The memorial walls were built by Jamie and Tye Boyle. 

The memorial is part of the ongoing upgrade of the Parndana hall and museum precinct, with improvements over the last 10 years including the new grassed memorial area between the hall and museum, new toilets and foyer of the hall, new hall entrance and hall doors, new gutters and facias and more.

The next stage of the project is the car park sealing and upgrade, along with landscaping and beautification of the area. “We hope to continue the unification of the whole street with colour coordination, garden bed structure and plantings,” Mrs Cooper said. Artist impressions of what the Parndana hall museum precinct will look like are posted in the hall foyer. 

Those thanked for their support and contributions included the council, Parndana Museum, the SA Government’s Fund My Idea program, Shep’s Art Gallery, Jaan Kuchel and Millar family. Several anonymous cash donations had also been received.

Mayor Peter Clements congratulated the community on the achievements. “Our support will continue. You are a group of people that get things done.”

The members of the Parndana Progress Association paid tribute to association president Cheryl May, who was not able to attend the unveiling. They called her an “inspiration and the driving force” behind the project.