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    MEMORIES: Gordon Fischer has stepped down from the Horsham Regional Livestock Exchange board, having seen the facility evolve and grow over two decades at Burnt Creek.
  • Hero image
    Gordon Fischer has retired from his position on Horsham Regional Livestock Exchange’s board after 20 years as its transport industry representative. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER

AgLife: Gordon Fischer reflects on industry change

By Abby Walter

A Horsham Regional Livestock Exchange stalwart has resigned from his board position after 20 years of service.

Gordon Fischer served on the Horsham Regional Livestock Exchange, HRLE, board since it began operating from its Burnt Creek Industrial Estate location. He was the board’s transport industry representative.

Until 1999, Horsham’s saleyards were located in the city centre and Mr Fischer said he was ‘very keen’ when the relocation to Burnt Creek was proposed.

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“I jumped on board with the idea to move the saleyards,” he said.

“I was a livestock transport operator for close to 50 years and I had a long association with the original saleyards. If we hadn’t have moved the saleyards, we wouldn’t have them at all now.”

Mr Fischer remembers a very different time when the saleyards were in the city centre.

“In the old days, we used to have to walk 2000 sheep from the saleyards in the middle of Horsham on a Friday afternoon to paddocks at Haven,” he said.

“With the only bridge at Stawell Road, we would have to block traffic.

“It was quite an achievement to get all the sheep across the bridge and out to Haven. Now we have the paddocks on-site if there is stock that does not sell — which is a big advantage.”

Mr Fischer said his biggest achievement during his time on the board was his contribution to the quality facilities that stand today.

“I enjoyed being part of the group that built one of the best saleyards in Victoria,” Mr Fischer said.  

“Through all the board members’ input, we have what is there today — and to me, it is the best saleyards in the state.

“It’s such a diverse group of people from within the industry and the reason the livestock exchange is so successful is because of the input everyone on the board has.

“The biggest advantage was when we received funding for the new roof over the yards.”

Mr Fischer said he had a ‘real passion’ for HRLE.

MEMORIES: Gordon Fischer has stepped down from the Horsham Regional Livestock Exchange board, having seen the facility evolve and grow over two decades at Burnt Creek.

“I made a lot of good friends during my time at the saleyards and met knowledgeable and good people,” he said. 

“In my time we went from having three electric loading and unloading ramps to eight.”

Horsham Regional Livestock Exchange manager Paul Christopher, the council’s commercial enterprises coordinator, said Mr Fischer worked hard to support improvements.

“Gordon has always been a great advocate for HRLE and has wanted it to improve,” he said.

“That is why when the selling pen extension, new electric ramps, roof and effluent dump were suggested, he was all for it and provided input to make these projects happen — hoping that it would put HRLE in a good position moving forward in the industry.

“Gordon has supported me in my role as manager of HRLE for 16 years and has been able to fill me in with historical facts about the shift from town in 1999 out to the new facility at Burnt Creek, which has been greatly appreciated.”

Board chairman David Grimble said Mr Fischer was the longest serving board member and its sole livestock transport representative.

“Over the past 20 years his significant contribution in providing his expertise and industry perspective has helped shape the strategic direction and improvements of the exchange, while enhancing the reputation as a modern, viable selling facility,” he said.

“At our recent board meeting, it was a pleasure to speak to his contribution and present him with a fitting token of our appreciation.

“We wish him well knowing that his input has shaped the facility we have today.”

The entire July 27, 2022 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!

The entire July 27, 2022 edition of AgLife is available online. READ IT HERE!