Queen’s Birthday Honour to ‘Biddy’ Badenach
Derwent Sailing Squadron and Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania Life Member, Robert ‘Biddy’ Badenach AM, has been recognised for his services to yachting and Australian Rules football in the Queen’s Birthday Honours.
The AM (Member of the Order of Australia) honours the former RYCT Commodore for his outstanding contribution to both sports and also his longstanding roles in community events, including the Bream Creek Show.
The award is appropriate in the lead-up to the 75th Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Club in December.
Joining ‘Biddy’ in receiving the AM in today’s Queen’s Birthday Honours is Matt Allen, President of Australian Sailing and 2017 winner of the Sydney Hobart with his yacht Ichi Ban.
‘Biddy’ Badenach’s role as one of the RYCT’s voluntary administrators in finishing the Sydney Hobart Yacht Race goes back to 1993. He he took over the role of finish co-ordinator in 1997.
In that role he co-ordinates virtually everything that happens at the finish of the famous Sydney Hobart Race, from the finish box on Castray Esplanade to the prizegiving at the Grand Chancellor Hotel, in close liaison with the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia.
‘Biddy’ has been a member of the RYCT since 1964 and the Derwent Sailing Squadron since 1967. He is a Life Member of both clubs and is an inductee into the Australian Yachting Hall of Fame.
Still a practising solicitor for Murdoch Clarke Lawyers, the 75-year-old grandfather’s is still a regular race officer for both clubs.
His contribution to Tasmanian life goes far beyond sailing. For the past 40 years he has helped coordinate the Bream Creek Show as the event’s patron.
The Queen’s Birthday Honours award also recognised ‘Biddy’s’ significant involvement in Australian Rules football. He was a State League umpire who refereed for 18 seasons, including three TFL grand finals.
Past Commodore Badenach today described his Queen’s Birthday honour of AM (Member of the Order of Australia) as a humbling acknowledgement of his work in the Tasmanian community.
He told today’s ‘Sunday Tasmanian’ newspaper: “I’m very thrilled and humbled by it all. When I take these tasks on, I don’t do it for the rewards and accolades.”
‘Biddy’s’ son, Charles, summed up the honour: “He’s one of those guys who is really committed to making the community a better place. He does the things he does because he genuinely enjoys it, not for the recognition, but this honour is certainly a nice bonus for a deserving man.”
And all of us who have worked with ‘Biddy’ on the Rolex Sydney Hobart and other yacht club events, fully agree. Well deserved, ‘Biddy’!
Words and Photo: Peter Campbell 10 June 2019