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Walking Group

As it is so lovely at present up on the hill, we will continue to meet adjacent to the Pacific Hotel for June. There will be some up and down hills involved most weeks!

June actually has 5 be prepared for an ‘excursion’ on the last week of June!

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Membership Renewal

It's THAT time of year again. Your PYHS Renewal fee of $20 per person can be paid anytime before the end of next month (June 30th), to ensure smooth continuity of your membership.

Payable by cash, cheque, or direct debit.  

Membership Renewal Form | PYHS Museum

There is no need to fill in a 'Membership Renewal form'

UNLESS some of your details have changed - eg email address, preferred phone contact etc. 




Details for Direct Debit payment

BSB: 062 688 A/C: 10153663
Enter your name in the reference field - e.g. John Smith


Our postal address remains P.O Box 100, Yamba 2464. 
Alternatively, payments can be made in person, at the Museum, during opening hours.Please ensure that you get a receipt filled out for 'Membership Renewal' and your name to assist our Treasurer in tracing all payments.

Thank you for attending to this promptly; your renewal fee greatly assists the ongoing functioning of the Society. 

Please note, Life Members are not required to pay the annual fee, but may choose to make a donation - of course welcome at any time.

Thank you, Anne

Volunteer Profile - Mardi Dunbar 

I have lived in Yamba for over 40 years. For most of those years I was occupied bringing up children, working and family life. Many times, I drove past the Story House Museum and thought I must pop in there one day and see just what they can tell us about people and events of Yamba’s past.

One day…………. Of course, one day never seemed to arrive and the years slipped by. My children grew up and left Yamba to follow their own paths and eventually I decided it was time for me to retire. I contemplated following the children to the city and overseas then realised they would probably move on again so that would not be a good idea and what better place to retire than Yamba. As retirees and grandparents, we all know the children will probably be back in Yamba most school holidays and it is a bonus to have grandparents here.

I retired four years ago and hardly had time to draw breath before I seemed to be included in more activities and groups than I knew existed in Yamba. As the retirees saying goes “how did I find time to work.”

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One of those groups was, of course The Lower Clarence Historical Society and the Story House Museum.

At the urging of friends, I joined the society and was immediately drawn into assisting with developing and preparing new exhibits, renovating, and renewing old ones and of course doing the volunteer training to work on the front desk.

There are many jobs at the museum that need volunteers including hospitality and catering for functions, gardening, managing the finances, marketing and PR, or research and data management. Who would have thought so much goes on at little Story House in River Street?

However, working on the front desk is the role that brings volunteers into direct and personal contact with visitors and talking with visitors I soon found I needed to familiarise myself with all aspects of the displays and stored materials. Most of our visitors are not local to the area but many have old memories of holidays here or have family connections they want to explore. I enjoy talking with them and exploring their connections and memories. Sometimes we even manage to connect them with old friends or forgotten family.

Now I am more familiar with the museum and its displays I bring all my guests and particularly my grandchildren to experience the hidden secrets of the displays. The grandchildren particularly enjoy seeing the old-fashioned outfits their parents wore as Nippers and seeing the old school they attended.

It is a joy to be a part of this wonderful organisation and to connect with so many creative and dedicated people. I recommend volunteering at the museum to anyone who wants to get to know the area and to feel part of such an inclusive group.

Goodbye and thankyou Kurt

You will certainly be missed from the front desk and we sincerely thank you for the many years you dedicated to bringing happiness to visitors as they entered our Museum! Best of luck with your move and may your future be healthy and happy.


Kurt poses next to his favourite display. Kurt is off to live in Cleve, South Australia, a rural town between Port Lincoln and Whyalla.


We wish him the best on his next life journey .


Contact Bev 0499588137 at your earliest convenience

if you are able to help keep our doors open!


Our Stories ... Yamba Theatres 

Dorena Public Hall was opened on 20 September 1924 on Lot 15 DP8634, which ran from High (No. 22) to Coldstream Street. It was built and owned by carpenter Augustus William Ernest Eggins. It was in opposition to  Yamba School of Arts Hall which opened on 29 August 1907 and was used for dances and other social events including silent movies (with appropriate piano accompaniment) on weekends during the busy season from late 1925 onwards. Mr Eather of Grafton was permitted to show movies in the 186-seat theatre provided he supplied a bucket of water, bucket of sand and one blanket in the biograph box. Meanwhile, Lawrence Penn’s Travelling Pictures and Harold Gale’s Lyceum Pictures made regular screenings at Yamba School of Arts during the Christmas season.

In May 1926, Christian Emanuel Eggins, a carter of Yamba, purchased Lot 15 (and 14) DP8634 from his brother Augustus, who was having marital problems. Christian extended the hall in 1928 to accommodate the picture showing. He announced his retirement in 1936 and disposed of his considerable business interests. He became a contractor and successfully won several tenders for various works for Yamba Urban Area Committee after it was formed in 1931.


Talkies commenced about 1932 with Penn’s Touring Talkies at School of Arts Hall. In October 1936, Nellie Toyer, wife of mechanic James F Toyer of Yamba, acquired Dorena Hall. James was in partnership with Phillip Morris Green, labourer and sanitary contractor of Yamba. The hall was remodelled, a permanent screen was installed for the popular talkies, and it was renamed “Enterprise Theatre”.  The theatre was managed by James Toyer and pictures were shown twice weekly but on every weeknight during the short period at Christmas and New Year.

In June 1944, Richard Henry “Harry” Apps of Grafton, Motor Garage Proprietor, and Daphne Marie Apps, his wife, purchased Enterprise Theatre. They installed a “G.R. Brakell” screen and increased the seating capacity by 128 seats to 404. Pictures were continued to be shown twice weekly but three times weekly in school holidays and six nights weekly during the busy Christmas period. Harry was a keen photographer and made several videos of Yamba events in the 1950s.

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Penn’s Touring Talkies transport


Enterprise Theatre


Richard Henry “Harry” Apps of Grafton, Motor Garage Proprietor, and his wife Daphne Marie Apps

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1948 photo of Yamba Theatre and Bakery in High Street

Natures Palette Exhibition     .... 24 June - 20 July 2023 

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What's on ...


Mon 5 Committee mtg 9.30am

Frid 16 Members mtg 9.30-11am

Sat 24 Natures Palette Exhibition


NAIDOC Week 3-9

Mon 3 Open NAIDOC Week Yarning Circle, 9.30-1pm

Mon 3 Committee mtg 1.30am

Thurs 20 Natures Palette Exhibition ends


Mon 7 Committee mtg, 9.30am

Frid 11 AGM 9.30am

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