The definition of heritage is subjective and can depend on personal feelings. However, the Rotary Club of Waterfront believes it is important to start at the beginning when discussing heritage.
The rebirth of the Victoria and Alfred portions of Cape Town harbour was linked to the planting of the seed to start a new Rotary Club. David Jack, the former City Planner of Cape Town, was instrumental in the early presentations that opened eyes to the potential of the area. The Breakwater Prison and Robinson Dry-dock, both built from stone hewn by prisoners, are examples of the area’s heritage. It is wrong to ignore unpleasant aspects of history, as much good has been achieved despite reprehensible events.
Fast forward a couple of decades and the vision of Cape Town Rotarians led to the formation of a new Rotary Club. David Jack, now the Managing Director of the V&AW Company, encouraged Piet van Zyl to join him in ongoing development. Although Jack declined to rejoin Rotary due to his workload, he put Piet van Zyl forward as a Charter Member. Working with Piet, whom he had known for years, gave confidence that the new Club would be successful.
The list of Charter Members grew, including Thomas Graham, who started the Cape Town Maritime Museum, and June Webber, respected by the legal profession. Rob Whitehead, the Trawling Manager from Irvin and Johnson, was also signed up. Kees Kamminga, from Radio Holland, was a natural choice, as was Derek Wrankmore, from the insurance company MIB. Kevin Reid, a dentist, and Peter Wetzstein, a Swiss hairdresser, joined, as did Arnold Crous from the SABC. Martin Colman and Gordon Millar, experienced in business stationery and printing, also became members.
The incoming President of Rotary International in 1992, Cliff Dochterman, chose “Real Happiness is Helping Others” as his Presidential Theme. This guiding beacon for the Club and its members is a vital Heritage that will not be eclipsed in time.