Vintage rally a nod to a chapter of our wartime history

CONVOY: A vintage car leads Maryborough District Historic Vehicle Club members into Creswick on Saturday. Pictures: Luka Kauzlaric
CONVOY: A vintage car leads Maryborough District Historic Vehicle Club members into Creswick on Saturday. Pictures: Luka Kauzlaric

More than 50 historic cars, including Fords dating back to 1913, travelled from Clunes to Creswick in a rally on Saturday.

The run, organised by the Maryborough District Historic Vehicle Club, also commemorated a little known chapter of the region’s wartime history.

ALL CLASS: Mark and Gayle Border pose with their 1913 Ford Model T, which was regarded as the first affordable car at the turn of the twentieth century.

ALL CLASS: Mark and Gayle Border pose with their 1913 Ford Model T, which was regarded as the first affordable car at the turn of the twentieth century.

Rally director Geoff Trengove has been hard at work over recent weeks, researching what residents did back home during World War I.

GENTLEMEN: John and Michael Paas inspect their 1929 Chrysler 65, which was introduced on the cusp of the Great Depression.

GENTLEMEN: John and Michael Paas inspect their 1929 Chrysler 65, which was introduced on the cusp of the Great Depression.

In 1915, a “monster run” of more than 50 Fords travelled from Ballarat to Creswick, all flying Belgium’s black, yellow and red flag.

“Why the Belgian flag? The answer is 1915,” Mr Trengove said. “Belgium was under attack from Germany, it was a patriotic gesture from the allies.”

On Saturday morning, cars arrived at the School of Forestry at Creswick, carrying Belgium flags just as the Fords did in 1915.

According to the Ballarat Star, the travelling party in 1915, including Creswick-born Premier Alexander Peacock, were treated to “dainty tea and sweets”.