Martin Johnson highlights Williamstown's character in his new book

Talk about characters: Martin Johnson with one of Williamstown's best known characters David 'Squasha' Pinson next to his 1966 American Fairlane 500 Convertible. Photo: Supplied
Talk about characters: Martin Johnson with one of Williamstown's best known characters David 'Squasha' Pinson next to his 1966 American Fairlane 500 Convertible. Photo: Supplied

"To summarise the culture of Williamstown, I would say this town was built by people with a little larrikin attitude, a bit of 'She'll be right', and a lot of a love of life," author of a new Williamstown book, Martin Johnson shared.

"I don't know anyone in Williamstown afraid to roll up their sleeves and get their hands dirty," he continued.

"From the men and women, we called Mister and Missus as children, to the men and women from my own generation; they moulded a giving and caring community which in turn has established a safe environment for the children and young adults of today to explore their own hopes and dreams."

The Gawler poet, author and musican, born and bred in Williamstown promotes his latest publication, titled: 'from Rabbit Traps to Cellar Doors'.

It features a mix of stories, poems and photographs of the Williamstown township - one of South Australia's early villages.

Mr Johnson believes his book best reflects the traditional working-class Australian ideals.

"From what I have learned from my interviews and general conversations with the locals during the course of putting the book together, these ideals are natural to them," he said.

"It has been both a privilege and great pleasure for me to be able to record their stories in a book."

Extract from his book

'From shopkeepers, to publicans, workers in the mines, reservoirs, farms, dairies, honey-houses, trucking companies, vineyards and sawmills, practically everyone I knew who lived in the town when I was growing up was a character, in some way.

'It identified who we were and, in a way, defines the town today. Their legacy lives on through the RSL, the church, and the diverse collective groups such as the Williamstown and District Historical Society as they work to preserve the cultural heritage of the town.'

Official launch

Mr Johnson looks forward to launching his book to the public with support from Barossa Mayor Bim Lange, in the garden of the Williamstown Hotel, 11am, Sunday, October 20.

Enquiries can be made on 0467 449 292