Dorothy Gwynn LOVERIDGE 1
- Born: 30 Jun 1890, Bowral, New South Wales, Australia
- Marriage: Sir Cecil Harold HOSKINS Kt on 1 Nov 1913 in Burwood, New South Wales, Australia
- Died: 2 Dec 1982, Bowral, New South Wales, Australia aged 92
Another name for Dorothy was Dot.
DOROTHY LOVERIDGE (1890 - 1982) was born in Bowral in1890, in the middle of a snowstorm and prematurely due to her mother being kicked by a horse, at the old house Lynthorpe, which still stands in Gladstone Street. She married Cecil Hoskins in 1913, and had as a girl shown talent both at drawing and painting, and as a pianist. A large family did not leave much spare time, but when around 60 years of age, she took up painting in oils, and became noted, particularly for her flower paintings. She continued until over 80 years of age, her last canvas being in my possession. She never neglected charitable work, always taking an interest in Church affairs, in the Mothers' Union, and in Red Cross, earning a 20-year service badge.
Dorothy married Sir Cecil Harold HOSKINS Kt, son of Charles Henry HOSKINS and Emily Matilda Colley WALLIS, on 1 Nov 1913 in Burwood, New South Wales, Australia. (Sir Cecil Harold HOSKINS Kt was born on 11 Nov 1889 in Petersham, New South Wales, Australia, and died on 8 Mar 1971 in Sutton Forest, New South Wales, Australia,.)
CECIL HAROLD HOSKINS (1889 - 1971)
DOROTHY GWYNN LOVERIDGE (1890 - 1982)
(from 'Hoskins History' compiled by Donald G Hoskins, 1988)
Cecil's education at Newington (and at King's College, Goulburn while his parents were in the West on the Goldfields project) was unspectacular, and showed no portent of the success he would achieve, both in the steel business, and the A.M.P. Society. Before entering the Lithgow works with his father, he had only a short period of experience with Briscoe & Co., Iron and Steel merchants in Sydney. He learned no trade, and had no tertiary qualifications of any kind. In 1908, Charles took his family to reside at 'Eskroy Park' (except for Flo who was married in 1907). 'Illyria' was leased out for a while, and later sold.
There followed three eventful years for the family. Wilmot was married in 1910; a major strike at the works occured in 1911 and, in 1912, Hilda died tragically in an accident at the level crossing gates at 'Eskroy Park'. Charles' sons, now all helping in running the Lithgow enterprise, must have had very little time or opportunity for acquiring social graces!
Meantime, other important events were in train which would have a profound influence on the family. Only a few blocks away from 'St Cloud', Dorothy Loveridge lived in Shaftesbury Road with her parents. She attended P.L.C. Croydon, and probably like most young ladies of the time, her scholastic achievements were modest; but she was an accomplished artist, and quickly reached the standards of a concert pianist. Dorothy established a friendship with George Hoskins' daughters Irene and Gladys, who were of much the same age.
Dorothy's younger sister, Madge (still a teen-ager at the time), recalls that these Hoskins girls arranged a party, to which the Lithgow Hoskins boys were invited. (Included in the circle of friends were the Wise sisters, Irene and Ethel, whose sister Lillie had married William Hoskins in 1905; Ethel was to remain a life-long friend of Dorothy and Madge). This party led to the meeting of Dorothy and Cecil, and also to Guildford meeting Jeanie Mathieson (whose father Peter, a Sydney merchant, also lived in Strathfield). Later of course it may be said to have led to the marriage of Sid with Madge Loveridge. Cecil and Dorothy were married in 1913.
Their early days were spent at 'Windarra' which was part of the 'Eskroy Park' estate. The children went to school at Marrangaroo Public, walking to school, while Dorothy drove a horse-and-trap to pick them up at lunch-time so they could have a hot meal! After the tragic death of Guildford, Sid was living at 'Eskroy Park' and of course after Charles moved to Lawson, and then Sydney, the running of Lithgow devolved on Cecil and Sid. Cecil moved to Sydney in late 1924 (after which Ted and Kath Mackey occupied 'Windarra', from where Ted was to preside over the winding-down of the Lithgow works).
By then, the finished Kembla Building had become the head office of the Steel Company and Charles had recently retired. That was the start of several busy years for Cecil. He made frequent trips to Port Kembla, where construction was started.
In 1927, he undertook a major trip overseas, from which resulted many fruitful business transactions: the merging of interests with Baldwin's Ltd. and with Dorman Long Ltd., the flotation of Australian Iron & Steel Ltd. and the raising of Preference capital for A.I.S., considered at that time to be the biggest raising of company capital in Australia.
In between times, Cecil himself pegged out leases of limestone at Marulan, which were to become an essential factor in the Port Kembla operation. Adjoining leases were owned by the Taylor family, who had promoted the formation of Southern Portland Cement Ltd. Cecil arranged for the Steel company to take a minority interest in S.P.C. (later to be made into a majority interest), and set up an arrangement for the two companies to work their leases jointly, which is still in force to-day.
Cecil became General Manager of S.P.C., a position he held for many years. Another company, Southern Blue Metal Quarries, was formed to quarry crushed rock from Ginginbullen, near Moss Vale. This operation only lasted a few years, the rock being found too hard and expensive to work.
During this time, Cecil and Dorothy lived in the magnificent old home 'Hillside', in Woollahra. When the depression struck, it had to be sold (sadly it was demolished soon after, and replaced by three blocks of flats). In the meantime, Cecil had bought 'The Headlands' at Exeter, with about 40 acres, which was formerly a Yates seed and bulb farm. The old residence served as the family holiday home for some years. It was demolished when a new home 'Invergowrie' was built. At the same time, Cecil bought and amalgamated several farms nearby, totalling about 1,400 acres, and operated these as a mixed farm. In 1948, the property was sold, just before the Korean War caused the price of wool and the value of land to skyrocket!
The depression had a disastrous effect on the finances of A.I.S. from which it never really recovered. Always short of funds, it was unable to keep up with the pace set by B.H.P., and in 1935 Cecil faced up to the difficulty by seeking a merger with B.H.P. The rest is history - the arrangement led to increased prosperity for all members of the family, while Port Kembla was to become one of the world's great steel plants. Cecil remained with the merged company as General Manager, and later was retained as a Consultant.
During these years, Cecil had been invited to join one or two company boards, but for various reasons did not pursue this phase of commercial life, except as regards the Australian Mutual Provident Society (which claimed to be the largest mutual life office in the British Commonwealth). He was appointed to the Board of the A.M.P. in 1929, becoming Deputy Chairman, and then Chairman in 1947, a position which he held for a record term.
Cecil played a major part in transforming the A.M.P. from being an investor solely in government securities, into becoming Australia's largest investor in equity stocks, with the Society playing a large part in financing many of the major projects which have led to Australia's post-war development.
During his term, A.M.P. also became one of the largest station and cattle owners in the nation, and itself engaged in the clearing and pasturing of some half-million acres of the so-called "Ninety-mile Desert" in South Australia. The latter connection caused him to lead his own family into the development of an 8,000 acre property near Keith, S.A., which was later to be owned and operated by his daughter Elaine, and her husband, Rob Taylor.
Both Cecil and Dorothy were keen gardeners. As a result, they created together famous and extensive gardens at 'Invergowrie' in which they were much assisted by the lasting association with Paul Sorensen.
After the sale of 'Invergowrie', Cecil and Dorothy lived at 'Cardrona', near Moss Vale, where they established another notable garden. Cecil died there in 1971, having never been in hospital in his 81 years. Thereafter, Dorothy moved to 'Eastover', in Bowral, within sight of the place where she was born.
In her sixties, Dorothy took up painting in oils, and was recognised for her skill, particularly in still-life painting of the flowers which she so loved. Her memory is commemorated in a window in the Church of St. Simon and St. Jude in Bowral, and with Cecil, in one of the windows at Hoskins Memorial Church. In this Church, there is also a plaque which records the part played by Cecil and Sid in its establishment.
Cecil's interest in gardens extended into the public sphere; as well as the grounds of Hoskins Church, he directed the setting out of the grounds at Southern Portland, Berrima and of a large part of the Remembrance Driveway between Sydney and Canberra. This interest was recognised by the Hon. T. L. Lewis, N.S.W. Minister for Lands at the time, (he later became Premier of N.S.W and was incidentally a nephew of Essington Lewis of B.H.P.) in having named after him '7he Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve' which is located by the Wingecarribee River near Moss Vale.