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Lou Young's Dedication to Bribie


Lou not only established Bribie's first library but collected and wrote about its history.

On the eve of her retirement, Bribie Librarian, Mrs. Marguerite Young (known as Lou), produced a 34-page document called “A Collection of Information for Students: 1965-1992” which is essentially a manual about Bribie Island. The booklet, still available in the research section of the Bribie Library, gives a wonderful snapshot of information about Bribie’s history, flora and fauna, community organisations, businesses, services etc.

In her retirement Lou wrote her memoir called “Lou’s Wartime Bribie” an engaging description of her teenage years on Bribie during World War 2 when she was Marguerite (Lou) Farleigh. This delightful memory can be read in BIHS’ publication “Describing Bribie Island 1865 to 1965” :  Lou’s Wartime Bribie (1942-1945.)

Lou returned to Bribie in December 1963 with her husband, Ken Young, and their three children to establish the Bribie Welding Works. A busy mum she still found time to become involved with the Bribie State School P&C and became Secretary. A keen bookworm she reorganised the school’s library, purging it of the old tattered books and petitioning the committee for the funds to buy suitable books for the students.

A month after the opening of the Bridge in October 1963, the Bribie Island Chamber of Commerce was formed. Many believed the heavy Toll placed on the Bridge would retard Bribie’s growth, which had a population of only around 700 at the time.  One of the many items on the Chamber of Commerce’s plan for Bribie was a Library. Jack Williams, the local police sergeant, asked Lou if she would be the Librarian if he could get a ‘Council Library going’.

On 4th December 1964 the library was established in the old Snack Bar and Toilet Block situated in the park, opposite the Jetty, where the Library is today. Initially it opened only five hours a week with about 200 fiction and children’s books and 100 non-fiction able to be borrowed.

Eleven years later, in 1976, the old snack bar and toilet block was demolished to make way for a new Council built library. Lou, without any formal training, continued as Library Assistant-in-Charge until her retirement 27 years later in 1992.

Lou was involved with many Bribie community groups, like the Bribie Island Ambulance Volunteers, and they valued her expertise in fund raising and community awareness drives. Lou’s service to the community was officially recognised by the Caboolture Shire Council and the Bribie Island and Districts Tourism and Activities Association for her dedication to community service.

Lou and Ken retired to Esk where she passed away in September 2010.

Written by Lynne Hooper from information supplied by the Brennan/Young families and items in the public domain.

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