Dance kicks off first edition

Above: First Wanneroo Country Club president Ernie Chitty. Picture: Bill Marwick
Above: First Wanneroo Country Club president Ernie Chitty. Picture: Bill Marwick

The club ” now Wanneroo Sports and Social Club ” had been around for 12 years by then, offering members bowls, darts and other activities from Crisafulli Avenue.

Locals, particularly workers from Wanneroo’s Diamond Chicken Farm, had socialised in Yanchep but wanted somewhere closer to home. Established in mid-1962 as Wanneroo Sports and Bowling Club, and meeting at various venues, it became Wanneroo Country Club soon after.

Inaugural president was Ernie Chitty, who became the club’s first life member in 1967 and had the Ernie Chitty Lounge named in his honour.

There were 135 financial members by the time Wanneroo Shire Council confirmed the club’s land lease near Wanneroo Showground in mid-1964.

The clubhouse opened in late 1966, financed with a loan and with members’ fundraisers, including a cabaret dance and barbecue.

Over the years, membership has grown to several hundred, with activities including bowls, darts, golf, snooker, pool, bingo, meals and social events.

Members celebrated 50 years in July 2012 with a special dinner.

‘Unofficial’ historian Derek Newton, who joined with wife Dot as members 440 and 441 in 1981, is keen to retain the club’s history. He has passed on to the City of Wanneroo’s community history collection beautifully written early minute books, photographs, drawings, plans and other memorabilia.

‘They were sitting in a corner of the office and needed to be preserved,’ he said.