Tickle Tank Run

A small contingent of 12 people in 6 cars left the Clubrooms on Wednesday October 28 at 9.30 am and headed for Mt. Barker, via Callington and then Woodchester. The drive from Woodchester to Mt. Barker is quite a picturesque experience and makes us realise that our Adelaide Hills do have a charm all of their own.

We arrived at our destination at about 10.30 am and met another member of our Club who had driven direct to the venue.
A warm welcome was extended to us by the “Tickle Tank’s” owner, Irene Pearce, who invited us in to her home and, whilst we enjoyed her Devonshire morning tea, gave a most interesting and entertaining talk on the history of her unique residence.

Irene and Terry

Tickle Tank owner Irene with ACCMB member Terry Mabbitt

She has managed to do incredible things to an old, half-buried water tank on a small block of land and has, more or less, single handedly transformed it into a comfortable, appealingly quirky home, with steps and stairs and mezzanine floors, in a most beautiful and interesting garden full of beautiful plants and flowers. All this is interspersed with small and large examples of her own artistic creations popping up in every nook and cranny, not to mention the beautifully designed mosaic paving. Obviously, Irene has a strong artistic streak and is not afraid of a bit of hard work. What she has achieved is little short of a miracle. Just one of her artistic features is a mosaic mural of wisteria round one side of the “Tank”. Irene told me that there were 100 hours of work in climbing up and down the ladder to put the mosaic pieces in place and that did not include the time it took to cut all the little pieces for the flowers and leaves, etc.

After the morning tea, we were at liberty to wander round the property, inside and out, to drink in the wonderment of her work and talent. An especially warm person, Irene seemed to enjoy our company as much as we enjoyed the privilege of experiencing her magical little world. Many photographs were taken which, I fear, will never do justice to the real thing.

Lunch was enjoyed by all at the Kitto's

Lunch was enjoyed by all at Trevor and Deidre Kitto’s after the run

It was hard to leave this incredibly appealing dwelling and venture back into the real world and the Mt. Barker traffic. Some members took the opportunity to visit Spotlight and other shopping venues before returning to Murray Bridge and the home of Deirdre and Trevor Kitto, where we were to enjoy lunch, a social chit-chat and a stroll through the Kitto’s garden. As we dribbled in from our various shopping expeditions, we were greeted by our hosts and two other couples who had chosen to attend just the Murray Bridge end of the outing. In addition to enjoying the garden, we were also welcomed into the shed, to see Trevor’s lovely old truck project, and to view Deirdre’s doll collection and some of her needlework masterpieces.

Tom and I would like to thank those who attended and specially thank Deirdre and Trevor most sincerely for providing such an excellent venue, plus scones, jam and cream, plus pastries, plus tea and coffee, plus chairs and tables, etc., for us all. It beautifully rounded off a very well-received Club Run and I am sure that everyone enjoyed this experience very much.


Report by Tom and Lyn West