Bob Reed

== '''Bob Reed, JP''' ==

'''Bob Reed'''
Justice of the Peace -20 years.
Honorary Ranger NPWS - 15 years.
Honorary Beach Inspector on Reef Beach - 25 years.
Honorary Manly Council Ranger - 10 years.
Manly Council - Scenic Walkway Committee member - 4 years.
Fairlight Precinct Committee executive - 5 years.
Keep Australia Beautiful, Clean Beach Challenge Assessor - 4 years.
President Free Beach Association of New South Wales - 12 years.
Meals-on-Wheels volunteer - 12+ years (on-going).
Manly Council Bush Regeneration volunteer - 3 years.

1 Background.
2 Lobbying for legal nude bathing.

Robert Reed was born, in The Junction, Newcastle, N.S.W., in 1941. The economic circumstances of the Reed Household meant that there was very little money for required clothing like school uniforms, shoes, etc.. Let alone luxuries, like bathing costumes. Living so clothes to the ocean, Bob, at the age of fourteen was pleased to find Mooney Mooney Beach, which, being deserted, allowed him to enjoy the surf nude. He enjoyed this first experience with naturism.
After a less than enjoyable childhood, attending schools in Newcastle (Lack of resources, e.g., school uniforms, etc., were a factor) , Bob was pleased to find employment with a firm, called Beard Watson, in Sydney, in 1960. His next, and last job, for the rest of his working life was with an import company, as travelling sales of textiles, all along the East Coast of Australia, getting to know people and places, there, very well, during twenty-three years.

'''Commitment to legal nude bathing'''

After settling down, in Sydney, Bob looked for the beaches where nude bathing was an accepted practice and Reef Beach became his favourite beach, where his people-skills soon established him as a 'personality', facilitating social interaction and best use of this small beach.
This was recognised by the authorities, establishing his role as honorary beach inspector, on Reef Beach. A function which he carried out enthusiastically and very effectively for twenty-five years.
Objections were raised, by near-by residents, to nude bathing. In spite of success, in the local court, confirming the right of visitors to this beach to bathe nude, Bob was founder of a committee for continued nude bathing, on Reef beach, when, via an Act of NSW State Parliament, three other Sydney beaches were given legal status but that was not given to Reef Beach, now, a usually very quiet or deserted beach.
The committee for continued nude bathing on Reef Beach, then 'morphed' into the Free Beach Association of NSW, when this was suggested by the then editor of the naturist magazine, Sun & Health, who had been involved in starting up such an association in Queensland, in order to be affiliated with the Australian Nudist Federation (A.N.F.) which was considered to have been concentrating on promoting and supporting naturism, within clubs,in favour of nude bathing at beaches and other venues.
Established in 1992 and incorporated in 1993, this association attracted a significant number of members, supporting Bob Reed, who, as president, re-elected unopposed for twelve years, lobbied hard and worked hard, in a voluntary capacity to promote legal nude bathing, on beaches, in suitable locations.
In December 2005, when Bob did not stand for re-election, the FBA of NSW was legally dissolved and Mr Reed could relax, knowing that the telephone would no longer ring regularly, any time, night or day, with callers making enquiries about nude bathing or media reprentatives needing an official statement on events associated with nude bathing.
He now owns a vast collection of memorabilia associated with all those years of lobbying on behalf of naturists, reflecting on the stressful times, such as the arrests, in the spotlight of the media, on Reef Beach; the subsequent local court case; his address to the members, in NSW State Parliament, explaining the situation regarding legal nude bathing and also the good times and the good relations built up with a number of politicians, at local and state level.
He is often met by people who remember him, particularly from his days as honorary beach inspector on Reef Beach, when, wearing, without fail, his ( 'trade-mark') white hat, he was able to organise a number of fund-raising activiies, raising thousands for dollars, for good causes, like the National Parks and Wildlife Service.

"Prefer the north side of the harbour?
Visiting Sydney?
Stay at Fairlight Gardens B.& B.!
Bob's a friend." …….No longer active naturist.
Too busy looking after Fairlight Gardens B&B.

Booth, Doug, Australian Beach Cultures: The History of Sun, Sand and Surf, London: Frank Cass 2001

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