Tocal and the family of Ian and Rosemary Dunlop
The Rosemary Dunlop Memorial Trust was set up in 2005 to mark the close association between Rosemary Dunlop and Tocal. Applications are invited from Tocal students and are awarded by a scholarship committee.
Rosemary’s association with Tocal began when she and her husband, Ian, joined the Singleton law firm Shaw Dunlop in 1957. Ian’s father Colin was a partner at Shaw Dunlop and had been appointed an executor of the estate of CB Alexander of Tocal. Ian assisted his father with the administration of the Tocal Estate in association with CB Alexander’s nieces the Misses Curtis. The Curtis’s had lived for some time with their uncle in Tocal Homestead and remained there following his death in 1947.
In 1978, after Colin Dunlop’s death, the Curtis sisters began to consult Ian on their affairs including the establishment of the Jean Wilson Alexander Memorial Scholarship. Rosemary accompanied Ian on each visit to Tocal and both the Curtis’s and Rosemary thoroughly enjoyed these visits, becoming firm friends. Their lives become more and more interwoven to the extent that the architects of Tocal College, Philip Cox and Ian McKay were consulted on the renovation of Ian and Rosemary’s Singleton home, “Rawcliffe”.
Ian and Rosemary’s circle of friends included many staff at Tocal College. It is not surprising that they were founding member of the Friends of Tocal volunteer support group becoming dedicated and hard working members. Rosemary recognised the importance of the Alexander estate and was instrumental in establishing the archives of records held in the College library.
Rosemary’s association with Tocal is best summed up by Ian:“Rosemary’s interest in and knowledge of Tocal is a graphic illustration of the art of listening and retaining stories and folk tales woven into the web of casual conversations about times before this. Within a short period of her first acquaintance with Tocal, she had acquired a circle of friends and depth of knowledge concerning that place, its community and its past, that was and is astonishing.”
Rosemary fully supported and encouraged Ian’s involvement with Tocal. In particular she accompanied him to a Parliamentary Inquiry in 2004 into future operations and affiliation for the college to which Ian presented written submissions and gave oral evidence. She was also present at the Foundation Day proceedings at Tocal in 2004 when Ian delivered the Foundation Day Address. On both occasions she expressed great pride in Ian.
Rosemary’s presence and loving support were invaluable and a wonderful source of inspiration to Ian. After her unexpected death in 2005, with the approval of the CB Alexander Foundation and the support of Rosemary’s friends and family, Ian established the Rosemary Dunlop Memorial fund that provides an annual scholarship for selected Tocal College students. The inaugural award was made in March 2006 and there have been scholarships awarded annually since. Rosemary continues to be remembered at the College by the annual scholarship in her name.