Westbury and Districts Historical Society

Westbury and Districts Historical Society

The Westbury and Districts Historical Society (WDHS) is a special committee of the Meander Valley Council. The History Society has permanent rooms where local and family history is researched and displayed. It is open to the public two days a week or by appointment. The Society also has a website that highlights the history of the area.

Ellen (Nellie) Payne was one of Tasmania’s foremost woodcarvers and was born in Westbury in 1865. Nellie created carvings for many well-known Tasmanian and Australian organisations and families, including a large range of honour boards following WWI. Nellie’s work can be found in public and private collections across the world.

To recognise Nellie’s contribution to the Westbury community and to highlight her work, a sub-committee of the Historical Society, with support from the Tasmanian Community Fund, provided a four-week exhibition titled Who Was Nellie Payne?. The exhibition included a large amount of Nellie’s work and was held across venues in Westbury. Following on from the exhibition, a website highlighting Nellie’s work and history has been developed to ensure that her story is not lost.