Memories of 1960s Maun: a boat regatta in the Swamps

The attached video is of some self-organised entertainment for the Maun resident’s, a boat regatta in the Swamps. There was no boating club, the residents just decided to get together for the afternoon and have some fun. There are a variety of boat sizes, and someone organised a handicap system. If I remember, the regatta was held at Viv Sampson’s house; most of us lived on the river banks. I’m assuming the hippo’s and crocs kept out of the way because of the noise!

The video above are more of the Maun residents water-skiing on the river.


Written by Ian Brooks

Ian is Donald Brooks’ son. His father arrived in Maun in early 1962, leaving four years later in 1966. He was a police officer, trained in the UK, but working in the Colonial Service. His brief on being transferred to Maun was to sort out the ‘w’ element; there was a perception that there was insufficient regulation, particularly the hunting of the wild animals, and his task was to bring this under control.

Ian and his siblings were children while in Bechuanaland Protectorate/ Botswana; the younger 3 children were born in Bechuanaland Protectorate. The context is a combination of his own memory of life in Maun as a child, as well as various conversations with his parents over the years about the photographs and life in Botswana while they were there (1958 to 1968).

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