Ballarat resident searches for missing Chamber of Commerce books

A WOMAN has made a plea to residents to help her find missing Ballarat Chamber of Commerce minute books.

Barbara Hughes, who was once secretary of the organisation, said she was planning to write a book covering the history of the chamber. 

However, despite spending time trying to find the books, Ms Hughes said the books’ whereabouts remained a mystery. 

“I don’t think anyone would have thrown them out because of the significant information inside them,” she said. 

“Why would anyone throw them out?”

Ms Hughes said she believed the books may have disappeared during one of the organisation’s many office moves in the past. 

She said her search had turned up numerous theories as to where the books had ended up, including one rumour they had been kept in someone’s garage. 

The books are believed to be about A3 or slightly smaller in size and run from the 1970s until the early 1990s.

They are labelled with the date and state they are the Chamber of Commerce minute books on the front cover. 

Ms Hughes stressed the importance of the books to The Courier yesterday as she began to embark on writing her next book. 

“It is the difference between doing something really good and doing something which might not tell the full story,” she said. 

“You need something to spark the memory and they will make the story so much easier to tell. 

“The minute books are part of history and they need to be found.”

Ms Hughes said the book she was writing would be her fifth, with the launch of her latest work on Thursday at the Wendouree Library. 

This book focuses on the history of the former Ballarat Shire. 

While residents can attend the launch they should email to secure a place. 

Anyone who knows the whereabouts of the books are urged to call Jodie Gillett at Commerce Ballarat on 5333 3233.