10.48am, Wednesday 19th December, The Clocktower, Yalumba , Angaston, SA, Australia
Morning folks, just wanted to follow on from our trip down to Wrattonbully a couple of weeks ago. Making up one of the Hooper Vineyard boundary fences is a magic old stacked stone walls, and it gets its own feature in a new book – just released the weekend before last – “those dry stone walls – stories from South Australia’s stone age” by Bruce Munday with photographs by Kristin Munday.
The Mundays crisscross the whole state of South Australia and have captured the art and function of dry stone – also called ‘stacked stone’ walls. Best they explain their book in their own words:
“Far from being a dying craft, dry stone walling is enjoying a renaissance, continuing to make a statement across the South Australian landscape. ‘Those Dry Stone Walls’ is rich with beautiful imagery of these walls, the stories behind them, and the advice to inspire you to follow in the footsteps of our early settlers and start building your own.”
PS. Here in the Barossa Valley area – particularly out along Flaxman’s Valley Road – there are stacked stone walls running like string lines along many old property boundaries. According to the local old timer folk, these – and the extensive network of the same walls winding down between the Barossa and the Murray River at Swan Reach – were not built by convict labour. In fact, there were stone mason ‘gangs’ that travelled to the area and built these fences to contract, completing roughly ‘one chain’ or 22 yards each day.