We received this lovely tribute to the wide reaching influence of Maurice Saxby from one of our readers, Jane Brummitt. With her permission, we’d like to share it with you here….
I was deeply saddened to hear of the death of Maurice Saxby.
Maurice Saxby’s decades of support for Nutcote the home of May Gibbs will be deeply missed. In supporting the saving of Nutcote he honoured May Gibbs’ contribution to Australian children’s literature, championing her as the most well known children’s author in Australia. He pointed out that before Snugglepot and Cuddlepie was published in 1918, little was available especially for young Australians. Creatively he noted that May’s gumnut babies were part of art nouveau and not pictorial baby talk. He recognised that her sprightly prose and verse reflected her personality.
At the personal level, I shall never forget his hug of approval after I gave a talk at Nutcote expressing concern about the poor way May’s work was being reproduced by some publishers. That hug inspires me to keep educating people regarding the problem.