Information: The company was apparently boat builders who turned out the occaisional van or two in the years after WW2. They were in Melbourne The lights are brass rings around frosted glass domes (3"/75mm Dia) The gadget buffs will like the "pop-up" vent. This is operated by twisting a handle over the bench..attached to a dowel that runs through the roof! A very early "Robin Hood" range hood! The picture also shows how 1/2 round timber edging was used!..this is one of the "little" things that grabbed me...
There are also one or two other references to Botterill & Fraser on the web relating to boating. This provides some confirmation of Jazhow2's comment that Botterill & Fraser were (primarily?) involved in boat building as well as building caravans.
For more information and photos of Jazhow2's Botterill & Fraser caravan click here
For photos of another Botterill and Fraser caravan owned by Impalaclick here
Post by Don Ricardo on Apr 7, 2021 23:27:37 GMT 10
ERNESTINE HILL'S CARAVAN
Those of you who are vintage members of the forum (as opposed to your vintage caravans) may remember the name of Ernestine Hill, an Australian journalist and author who was born in 1899 in Brisbane and died in 1971.
Hill was a rather bohemian character who spent a major part of her life traversing the inland of Australia either alone or with her son Bob, and wrote a number of books based on her travels including The Great Australian Loneliness (1937) and Water into Gold (1937). She published a novel based on Matthew Flinders' life story My Love Must Wait (1941), wrote for various newspapers, and collaborated with Daisy Bates to write The Passing of the Aborigines (1938). My parents had several of Hill's books on their shelves.
Last Saturday morning I heard a discussion on ABC Radio National's 'Saturday Extra' program about a new book that has been written about Ernestine Hill and her association with Daisy Bates. My interest was piqued during the program when it was mentioned that, after World War II, Hill bought a caravan to tow behind the truck that she and Bob used for their travels into the Australian interior.
"Hmmm", I thought, "I wonder...", and sure enough after a bit of digging around I was able to find some photos of Hill's caravan. I was over the moon then to see that the van was immediately identifiable as a Botterill & Fraser.
The following photo shows Hill and possibly son Bob with their Botterill & Fraser caravan stopped somewhere on the Nullabor Plain in 1953:
(Permission to reproduce the photo granted by the State Library of South Australia PRG 1527/3/23)
And this photo showing Ernestine Hill in front of the caravan is from the ABC website:
(Source: Image Douglas Glass (National Archives of Australia A1200, L12289, no 6849765))
If you're interested in hearing the Radio National item about Ernestine Hill's friendship with Daisy Bates you can find it here.
A nice little addition to the history of Botterill & Fraser, which is not the best known name amongst Australian caravan manufacturers.