After decades of adorning back walls and stages across the state, the banner celebrating Women in Agriculture and Business of SA’s 80th anniversary now has a permanent home.
The banner, which was created in 1997, was unveiled on Thursday, January 17, by Attorney-General Vickie Chapman at the office of Primary Industries and Regional Development Minister Tim Whetstone.
“I am delighted to display the WAB 80-year anniversary banner in my office,” Mr Whetstone said.
“It has been a wonderful point of conversation for visitors, many who are involved in agriculture and live in regional communities.
"Given the history of the agricultural towns and districts portrayed, I thought [the banner] was appropriate to be housed in the office of the Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development.”
The idea to create the banner came from then-WAB State President Lois Harris.
Ms Harris asked all 52 WAB branches to create a motif on a piece of calico to depict their area. These were stitched together, and the banner was first unveiled at the WAB State Conference in 1997 to celebrate the 80th year milestone.
The experience and emotions of those rural women were actually woven into the fabric as they worked on it.
Since then, the banner, which is four metres long and nearly 3m tall, has been admired at a number of WAB events through the years, and also hung for a year at Roseworthy Agricultural College in the late 1990s.
Today’s WAB State president Sandra Young says she is constantly in awe of the work which has gone into creating the banner.
"Every time I see it, I discover more detail than the time before and see that much time and effort was put into making it – as of old – the experience and emotions of those rural women were actually woven into the fabric as they worked on it," Mrs Young said.
WAB, which was established in 1917, is a statewide support and communication network for rural women, with many meetings being held across the state to work on community projects, discuss wider issues, and participate in workshops of an educational or cultural nature.