Author Topic: Peter HARCOURT  (Read 1994 times)

Offline wgl220

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Peter HARCOURT
« on: Thursday 16 February 12 11:59 GMT (UK) »
Further to my request regarding John Mewton HARCOURT OF 12/2/12 I understand that Jonn's son Peter HARCOURT,(whose mother was Silvia Frances HARCOURT-ex. Perth),died in a motor accident in the early 1950's,at the age of 21 on the way to visiting his Mum in Angler's Paradise in Queensland. I cant find any record of this event or where it occurred. I assume he was travelling between Melbourne and Surfers Paradise.  Im keen to locate birth and death details for Peter.
Can anyone assist?
Sincere thanks,
wgl220

Offline ennael

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Re: Peter HARCOURT
« Reply #1 on: Thursday 16 February 12 12:35 GMT (UK) »
Looks like the death was registered in NSW.

15130/1955 
HARCOURT  Peter
Father John  Newton (obviously a mis-transcription)
Mother  Sylvia Frances
Registered at Albury   

http://www.bdm.nsw.gov.au/familyHistory/familyHistory.htm

Leanne

Offline Conamara Max

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Re: Peter HARCOURT
« Reply #2 on: Monday 23 April 18 03:12 BST (UK) »
Dear wgl220
I came across your post recently while doing some research of my own into Peter Harcourt's death. His mother Sylvia Harcourt was (later) my godmother. She was very dear to me, and especially to my mother Judy. Judy and Peter were boyfriend and girlfriend (or possibly even engaged) when Peter died in the car accident. The accident took place somewhere on the Hume Highway, and quite possibly they were going to visit Sylvia in QLD. I'm not sure that is correct however, as my understanding is that she lived in inland NSW at the time and only went up to Angler's Paradise in later years. I'm a bit unclear myself as to where they were travelling from and to.
My mother and Sylvia became very close after the car accident: my mother had lost her own mother only a couple of years earlier.
Sylvia returned to Perth and then took a trip to Europe, where my mother joined her. My mother married and when I was born, Sylvia became my godmother and we visited her as a family many times over the years, usually spending Christmas together.
I did find a newspaper clipping about the accident, but for the life of me can't now find it again. I'll keep looking. I'm pretty sure I made a JPG of it, and filed it.
My mother told me a little about the accident many years ago, but since then has never spoken about him, however if I knew more about why you wanted information, I could ask and she might tell me. It was a very sad time for her, and I suspect that she loved him very much. It's possible there is a photo of him that she has somewhere. She was badly injured herself, though fortunately survived.
regards, J


Offline judb

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Re: Peter HARCOURT
« Reply #3 on: Monday 23 April 18 06:19 BST (UK) »
Electoral Rolls show Sylvia Frances HARCOURT as follows:

1931 with John Mewton HARCOURT (journalist) at Eileen St, Cottesloe. WA
1937 at 11 Mabel St , Balcatta WA  Occ: saleswoman  No-one else of that surname at that address
1937 with John (author) at 315 New St, Brighton, Vic
1949 Sylvia Francis HARCOURT, manageress, 85 Pall Mall, Bendigo.   No-one else of that surname at that address
1954 with Peter HARCOURT, bookkeeper, Neale St. Flora Hill (Bendigo)  Occ: manageress
1963 10 Barkley St, Sandhurst; shop proprietor
1968 34 Oatland Ave, Esplanade, Angler's Paradise.

Occasionally spelt Silvia; occupations unless otherwise stated - home duties.

Judith


DYER - Wilts, London, Somerset, MIDLANE - Hants, Wilts, SONE - Hants, WRIGHT - London, Hants, SEAGER - Deptford, DWYER, FERGUSON - Victoria, MASON - Woodford Vic, BALLARD - South Wales, GOULDBY - Lowestoft
"Time present and time past are both perhaps present in time future..." T S Eliot

UK Census information Crown Copyrightt, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

Offline Conamara Max

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Re: Peter HARCOURT
« Reply #4 on: Monday 23 April 18 06:33 BST (UK) »
Hi Judith
Thanks for this quick response and the information about Sylvia. You're very kind to provide this information, I'm much obliged. This has clarified things greatly: she had a hairdressing salon in Bendigo (I'd been trying to remember the town - knew it began with B but could have been Ballarat or Broken Hill NSW). I think from what you have said here, that Peter and my mother were driving on the (old) Hume Highway from Sydney to Bendigo in Victoria for the visit. The accident happened somewhere in the town of Albury region based on the death certificate registration that I have.
regards, Jane

Offline wgl220

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Re: Peter HARCOURT
« Reply #5 on: Monday 23 April 18 08:55 BST (UK) »
Hi Judith and Jane,

Some years ago I collected a lot of information on John M Harcourt with a view to writing and self publishing a book. John was not only an author (3 books), he was a prolific short story writer and journalist.  John and Sylvia met in Perth. Following the birth of Peter,John and Sylvia moved to a rented house in the Melbourne suburb of Brighton Victoria. John had a secure wartime job as art critic for the Melbourne Argus.
Apparently John was a heavy drinker and it is said somewhat of a 'womaniser'. In time Sylvia felt very isolated and homesick and decided to return to Perth with her son and without John.
Sylvia was John's first wife...He was to marry 3 times!
Immediately following the second world war John established a very successful home design and construction business on low cost land he purchased in Eltham Victoria.
When Peter had grown up John invited him to work with him in his building practice in Eltham.
On becoming engaged Peter was very keen to introduce his new fiance to both his Mum and Dad.
After travelling from Eltham and nearing Albury on a foggy night their car, driven by Peter's new fiance, collided with the rear of a stationery timber truck. Peter was asleep at the time and did not recover. Following this tragedy in 1954 ,in memory of her late son Peter, Sylvia decided to set up a disability support facility in Bendigo for those injured in accidents and for the disabled,there being no such facility at that time. I understand that she donated her life savings and also organised a community fund raiser to make it a reality.You may 'google' Peter Harcourt Disability Services which has operated at 9-11 Harcourt Street, in Bendigo CBD. for the past 64 years!!!
A brilliant concept and achievement following such a tragic event.

Offline judb

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Re: Peter HARCOURT
« Reply #6 on: Monday 23 April 18 08:58 BST (UK) »
Thanks for adding to the story.  A fascinating tale.

Judith
DYER - Wilts, London, Somerset, MIDLANE - Hants, Wilts, SONE - Hants, WRIGHT - London, Hants, SEAGER - Deptford, DWYER, FERGUSON - Victoria, MASON - Woodford Vic, BALLARD - South Wales, GOULDBY - Lowestoft
"Time present and time past are both perhaps present in time future..." T S Eliot

UK Census information Crown Copyrightt, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

Offline wgl220

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Re: Peter HARCOURT
« Reply #7 on: Monday 23 April 18 13:43 BST (UK) »
Hi again,Judith and Jane,

One thing puzzles me ....Bendigo is NOT on the Hume highway on which the accident occurred.
If the young couple were heading from Eltham ( Melbourne) towards Sylvia's place in Bendigo,they would not go anywhere near Albury. Alternatively at this time Sylvia may have been living elsewhere,perhaps in NSW.
However this is not recorded in the Census details which places her in 1954 Bendigo.
Alternatively if Peter's young Judy was from NSW they may have planned to head towards Bendigo,Vic. via Albury NSW.
If there are any surviving pics of Sylvia,Peter or young Judy it would be great to see them.
Best regards,
Wayne

Offline Conamara Max

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Re: Peter HARCOURT
« Reply #8 on: Tuesday 24 April 18 02:05 BST (UK) »
Hi Wayne
Thanks for this, you have added so much to what little I know. And yes, my mother Judy was the driver - I didn't want to share that with you as I wasn't sure why you were interested. My father only told me a few weeks ago that she was the driver. I had a very different notion of what had happened, vaguely recollected from when I was first told about the accident by her, possibly in my teens. I think she told me when I asked about the scar on her face.
I'll be able to find some photos of young Judy and probably Sylvia too, but it will take a week or two as the albums are with my parents and I'm busy at work this week.
And how fascinating to know this about John M Harcourt. A journalist and author. Sylvia was a smart woman so it doesn't surprise me that they were married - or that she left (given what you say about him).
About your question Why Albury? Possibly they'd been in Sydney holidaying? Sight seeing? I can ask my father, I think he'll possibly know. Or, the accident happened in the Albury region - so who knows how far that extends.
I haven't been able to find the report in the newspaper again though I looked hard yesterday through Trove etc.
Are you related to the journalist John Harcourt in any way?
cheers, Jane