HISTORY

 

Noel 'Poley' Everett's grandmother and grandfather were born and raised in the Salisbury  Valley west of Dungog in 1859 and 1874.  Grandmother was Henrietta Deards and her mother Eliza Edwards, who were pioneers of the area.

In 1890, Henrietta at the age of 16, and her mother who was a bush nurse, rode side saddle over the Gloucester Tops from Salisbury to Barrington to take care of people ill with the plague.  At the time, Henrietta noted the good land on the Barrington River.

In 1891, Henrietta married John Everett, settling on a 1200 acre property on the Upper Williams River working hard for several years until they came to Barrington.

Some 20 years later, in 1910, John and Henrietta Everett bought the property "Myrtle Vale" for 5 per acre. (now Norma Everett's).  Then in 1920, they bought the property (now known as Poley's Place) from the original settlers.  The price was 15 per acre, three times as much as that paid for "Myrtle Vale" and no doubt directly attributed to the coming of the railway in 1913.

They milked cows for a living.

In 1917, Henrietta was deeply grieved by the loss of her eldest son, Herb, who was killed in action in France in World War 1.  In 1923 her husband died.  She raised her family, rode many miles to assist neighbors and friends in times of sickness, and still enjoyed riding until the age of 81, when she fell and broke her hip.  She had two other sons, Eric (Poley's father) and Albert and a daughter Olive.

The current homestead was built 1923 from timber milled from the property, with much of the lining cedar and rosewood, for a cost of 8600.

Pit sawn slabs from the original homestead cut in 1856 are still in good condition and were used in 1978 to erect the 'Miner's Hut' which is still in use today.

Eric married Ruby Atkins, and together had four children - John, Noel, Kevin and Annette.

Their income was derived from dairying, selling home grown vegetables and rabbiting. 

In 1937, Eric formed 'Meadowbank Guernsey Stud', with five cows, which then became the largest Guernsey Stud in Australia, and in 1964 he had about 320 head on 1000 acres and sold cattle throughout Australia.

Poley married Rosemary Ninness in 1977, and together developed the property as a country music entertainment, camping and recreation farm and tourist attraction in conjunction with a Simmental Stud in 1978.  They built facilities and conducted three country music hoedowns each year as well as catering for coach tours, school excursions and many private campers with Rosemary cooking country meals and riding side saddle while Poley sang his beloved country music.

Poley recorded over 60 songs on five albums of mostly his own writings in Tamworth.  These have recently been digitally recorded into a boxed set of three CD's.

Although, Poley suffered from Muscular Dystrophy he continued dairying until 1974, when it became too difficult for him to continue.  He bought his first guitar in Maitland when he was 18.  He promoted his country music career by singing in pubs. clubs, private parties and then touring the outback for a number years until that became too difficult and then he and Rosemary encouraged people, especially family groups to come to the farm to enjoy the country music hoedowns that they started in 1980, with some 5000 plus people taking up the offer to visit the farm in the earlier years and almost 3000 visiting in recent years, proving that Robert Dawson was right when he rode into the area in 1826 and described it as a place of running water and wondrous beauty.

Noel 'Poley' Everett was born on June 16, 1933 and passed away on November 24, 1999.

Today, Rosemary still runs the farm, and has hoedowns and camping on the property.

The property has only been owned by two families since first being settled.  It was the first property selected on the Barrington River, and was called "Wangan" meaning water view, with Granny (Henrietta) calling it "Wanganetta" adding the end of her name to it.

Poley named a lookout on the property 'Grannies' as a dedication to his grandmother who liked to sit there and watch the river. Poley is also buried on the property at 'Grannies Lookout'.

Now the property is called 'Ever-Rose' with the camping ground known as 'Poley's Place'.