Formation of the Club
In The Beginning – The Shaggy Dog Club.
On 8 November 1968 a meeting of interested fanciers met at the home of Mr and Mrs Vin and Evelyn Carroll in Clayton to form the Shaggy Dog Club,
the precursor of the Old English Sheepdog Club of Victoria.
Mrs Gladys Pateman acted as Pro Tem President and her husband Frank acted as Pro Tem Secretary. Whilst the minutes of the meeting are very scant on detail,
they do show that from the very start our club was formed “for the betterment of the breed and to socially bring people together.”
Other decisions made at this meeting were:
Financial Year: 1 December to 30 November
Meetings: Bi-Monthly, 1st Monday of the month
The minutes list 18 persons as attending with 23 recorded apologies. The meeting agreed to form the Old English Club of Victoria and an application was lodged with the Kennel Control Council of Victoria (KCC) for affiliation on 18 November 1968.
Unfortunately the application was not successful, and the reason the K.C.C stated in their letter, was “owing to the number of Old English Sheepdogs”. There was no other explanation.
Not to be outdone another meeting was held on 2 December 1968 to formulate a strategy to enable a successful application to be made. The following is an extract from that meeting.
“It was decided by various people present:-
To endeavour to increase the number of dogs registered with the K.C.C by contacting breeders of litters.
To make a concerted effort to make entries at various shows to increase interest in breed, both with judges and dog lovers.
By special efforts and social events increase funds. It has been decided to bank what limited funds there are in the name of
“The Shaggy Dog Social Club and hope that in twelve months the results will be good enough to make a further application to the K.C.C”
Mr & Mrs Pateman were breeders of Pekingese and heavily involved with the running of the Pekingese Dog Club of Victoria. Having set the ground work for the formation of the club they stood down from their interim positions in May 1969. Meanwhile the club continued to meet regularly and Lorraine Cossart-Walsh took over as Pro Tem Secretary with Noel Butler, who was a committee member of the K.C.C, accepting the role as Pro Tem President.
At a meeting on 17 June 1969 “it was decided that the name of the Shaggy Dog Social Club be changed to The Old English Sheepdog Club of Victoria.”
The number of members grew to 95 by October 1969 and a concerted effort was made by everyone to have as many OES as possible entered at the Royal Melbourne Show of 1969, in an attempt to demonstrate to the K.C.C that the number of OES were steadily increasing and participating in conformation shows. Minutes of the club’s September 1969 meeting indicate that there were 39 dogs entered a the show that year.
A second applicationfor affiliation with the K.C.C was made on 7 October 1969 and on 21 October the follwing avice was recievd from the Secretary of the K.C.C:
“I desire to inform you that the Committee will only consider applications for affiliation at their August meeting each year. Should you make application for affiliation prior to 1 August 1970, it will be dealt with at that monthly meeting.”
On 30 June 1970, a thid application for affiliation was made, listing a membership of 120 members. This application was finally approved at the K.C.C meeting on 19 August 1970.
The club continued to grow from strength to strength, reaching an all time high in membership of 600 in the 1976/77 year. The club became so active it had to form a number of sub committees, each comprising around a dozen or so members, just to keep up with the workload.
The club was abuzz with activity and was arguably recognised by the then Kennel Control Council of Victoria as one of the more robust and active clubs.
Today the clubs membership hovers around the 80 mark, and whilst the numbers are a small comparison to those halcyon years, the devotion and love of our wonderful breed is still there.