By Henriette Murray, Bloemfontein
The Free State Bar hosted the 65th annual GCB conference in Bloemfontein from 24-26 July 2010. Upon arrival on Thursday evening, delegates were welcomed with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres in the Southern Sun Hotel where they mingled and relaxed (around the pool for those daring enough to brave the Free State winter) in preparation for the serious (sometimes heated) discussions to follow on Friday. The highlight was undoubtedly the Friday evening.
GCB 65th anniversary dinner in Centenary Hall, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein
One-hundred and twenty guests were treated with typical Free State hospitality to a gala dinner in the stately Centenary Hall of the University of the Free State during which the Sydney & Felicia Kentridge Award was handed to the daughters of the late Bram Fischer by former Chief Justice Arthur Chaskalson.
See the report in 2010 August Advocate 3. Finally, if only temporarily, all 68 of our members should be back in the fold by January 2011 – the Supreme Court of Appeal is to vacate the Iustitia Building and the FS Bar is to be reunited on the third to the sixth floors thereof. Even the tea room will finally accommodate the Bar!
Mamello Thamae in June exchanged the Bar for the Bloemfontein Legal Aid Centre where she will be involved in mostly civil litigation. In her two-and-a-half years in private practice, she succeeded in making her mark and we look forward to ‘seeing her in court’ and, who knows, back at the Bar in the future.
Willem van Reenen of the Johannesburg Bar has joined us. He took chambers in October 2009 but formally moved in only three months ago. Despite his weekly commutes to Johannesburg he insists that Bloemfontein is now his base (conveniently close to his farm in Phillipolis, too!)
Acting appointments in the Bloemfontein High Court during 2010 were held by FS Bar members Jimmy Claassen SC (October-December), Johan Daffue SC (May-June; August), Peter Fischer (February) and Henriette Murray (June; October-December). Stanley (in red) at Florida’s TPC.
Lest we in the Free State appear to only work or entertain, there are those of us who also play – and with panache! Stanley Reinders recently experienced every golfer’s dream – a visit to the States as one of only six South Africans invited to play in an amateur world golf tournament in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Not only did he get to play the beautiful Harbour Town Links on Hilton Head Island, designed by Pete Dye and Jack Nicklaus and host to the Verizon Heritage Tournament of the PGA Tour,
Stanley (in red) at Florida’s TPC.
but also had the privilege of playing Florida’s #1 course, the TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach with its legendary water-encircled 17th hole where South Africa’s Tim Clark won the ‘Players Championships’ earlier this year. Stanley has played it for 30 years.
Through it he’s met and mingled with players from all walks of life in a sport where etiquette is as important as in court. As South Africans they were received with open arms, he says, and all because of Ernie Els.
But so, unquestionably, did Stanley himself further our cause by expounding our ‘Man, I drinks rule’ when an American smacked the ball into the tree right in front of them. The evidence? ‘Sure love those South African rule makers!’