These are the days of miracle and wonder

Two knights hurtle undaunted towards each other, each endeavouring to unseat the other with his lance. A typical 12th century tournament?  Or idealised fiction?

Those who follow your Club Correspondent’s introspections will recall earlier reference to Robin Hood: the original social justice champion.

Romanticised stories of Robin Hood, such as his portrayal in Sir Walter Scott’s novel Ivanhoe, have placed him alongside Richard I of England. Perhaps better known as Richard Cœur de Lion. But while any association between the pair may simply be invention, the story of Richard’s exploits during the Third Crusade is well-recorded.

Plantagenet – gold broom-flower

Eleanor Anne Porden introduces her own narrative poem written in 1822, which characterises Richard Cœur de Lion’s fortunes during the Crusade period; ‘we are captivated by the chivalrous and romantic spirit which breathes from every page of their history.’

His sable hauberk’s woven mail,
His brazen axe that crushed where’er it fell,
His silken mantle glorious to behold;
His saddle where the lions ramp’d in gold,
His lion shield, his helmet lion-crown’d,
And the gold broom-flower on its glittering round. (V, 426–31) 

In reality, Sir Walter Scott’s account of a medieval tournament wherein his protagonist, Ivanhoe, is confronted by multiple foes is the more accurate depiction of a tournament during the lifetime of Richard Cœur de Lion; with two teams of heavily armed and armoured knights setting upon each other.  Richard wore the sprig of ‘gold broom-flower’ and his shield bore the painted lion emblem to ensure he was not set upon by his own side! 

Rotary — blue and gold wheel

So now you know why Rotarians have worn a small blue and gold wheel designed badge since 1905.  It’s so you know we’re on your side. 

Beaumaris Rotary is your ally in the fight to: prevent the spread of polio; reduce the number of high school dropouts; help people suffering with mental illness; and more.

Over the last few months, Beaumaris Rotary has focussed locally with subsidised training of mental health first aiders, funding for one-to-one counselling support at a school and provision of food items for Holmesglen Institute International students.

We don’t claim to be particularly chivalrous. Nor are we knights in armour ready for a fight. But we’re quite capable of purchasing Christmas cards and writing special messages of Christmas cheer for children fleeing domestic violence!  And donating children’s jewellery accessories, such as bracelets, necklaces, rings, purses and hairbands as Christmas presents.

Make a Difference

If you’ve read Sir Walter Scott’s novel, you’ll know Ivanhoe was fortunate to have Richard I come to his aid.  We, too, recognise that we can’t do things alone.  It’s why, this year, we’ve worked closely with BayCISS, Neighbourhood Watch, Bayside Community Emergency Relief, The Highlands Foundation, On the Line, Matt’s Place and others to make a difference. 

This month, we’re contributing $2,000 towards items to go in the shipping containers organised by Neighbourhood Watch and destined to provide relief for bushfire victims in Cann River. 

Our supporters and sponsors

Phew, it’s been quite a year.  Like Richard I, who spent time imprisoned on his way back from the Crusades, we’ve had our own iso.  But it’s not stopped us making a difference!

It wouldn’t be possible without our supporters, everyone who donates gold coins, together with our sponsors: Bayside City Council; Bendigo Bank; Beaumaris Community Bank Branch; PKF Australia; Wilson Storage and Brighton (Jaguar and Land Rover).Without you, it wouldn’t be possible! 

Want to get involved and ‘Make a Difference’?  For a casual catch up and to learn more about Rotary, please contact Megan: Tel: 0418 578 114

Megan’s our Beaumaris Rotary Membership Director. The title sounds a little formal but trust us, she’s the friendliest person you’ll ever meet! 

Postscript: Your Club Correspondent isn’t convinced of romantic notions associated with Richard I.  His rap sheet shows he lied to his allies, jilted his fiancée, slaughtered defenceless prisoners and was incarcerated in an Austrian castle while his mother was called upon to raise a king’s ransom.  Richard spent most of his adult life in the Duchy of Aquitaine in the southwest of France.  All of which explains why she chose to give him the epithet of Richard Cœur de Lion rather than the English, Richard the Lionheart.  

1These are the days of miracle and wonder: lyrics from The Boy in the Bubble lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group. Songwriters: Forere Motlhoheloa and Paul Simon.

2Ivanhoe: A Romance (1819) by Sir Walter Scott.

3Cœur de Lion (1822), by Eleanor Anne Porden. 

4Richard I, the Lion-Heart and Saladin, c, 1325-1335, England, London, British Library. (Photo by Photo12/UIG/Getty Images)