Pair’s park stays still swell, 60 years on

Jackson Lavell-LeeAugusta Margaret River Times

Diving enthusiasts Don and Bev Morrissy recently celebrated Christmas and new year at Hamelin Bay Caravan Park for the 60th year in a row.

The 82-year-olds recently celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary, first staying at the caravan park in 1959 on their honeymoon.

Hamelin Bay Caravan Park manager Melissa Lay said the couple usually stayed for a week. Initially they camped but now stay in a cabin for family reunions.

“I’ve been here for 14 years and I’ve got to know them quite well,” she said. “We try to make their stay that extra bit special.”

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The Morrissys go spearfishing every day from 7am until 1pm off a boat Mr Morrissy built 30 years ago. Mrs Morrissy said they had many great memories of the caravan park.

“We slept in the back of our tiny car on our honeymoon with our feet in the boot but we fell in love with the place,” she said.

“I think it’s about the environment — all of our children and grandchildren love going diving with Don.”

Mr Morissy, a former head of science at Christchurch Grammar School in Perth, is also a registered shark attack survivor after being bitten on the arm by a wobbegong.

“We’ve had some great adventures and close encounters over the years, mostly with bronze whalers trying to steal our gropers or dhufish,” he said.

The Morrissys put their loyalty down to a sentimental attraction.

“It was nothing more than a bush site when we first stayed but the atmosphere is incredible,” Mr Morrissy said.

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