With few Harland relatives in Australia (her only Aunt, Elinor pursuing her career
overseas; and her grandfather William living in northern Australia), it was her mother’s
family (the Maudouits) who provided the focus of family life. And what a fun life
Her mother’s close family, of nine girls and a boy, shared a full social life including
holidays at country pubs managed by some of the sisters. Get-togethers saw everyone
working during the day and adjourning to the parlour in the evening for drinks, dress-ups,
charades and a rollicking good time.
During this time, knowledge of the Harland family came through intensive correspondence.
This was begun initially by Jack in letters to Aunt Elinor, Uncle Jack and Aunt Lilla;
and then taken up by Pam, who continued to correspond with Aunt Elinor Senior in
Bessbrook and Uncle Jack in Atlanta GA, USA.
Pam was a bright student with a well- developed social conscience, and was encouraged
to have and express opinions on a full range of topics. Conversation and debate
were encouraged at home and Jack gave Pam a great grounding in terms of history,
analysis and social responsibility.
While money was tight and there were few luxuries, it was an upbringing that was
rich and rewarding and filled with love.
Pam matriculated from Mordialloc-Chelsea High School. Her personal attributes were
recognized at the school where she was elected Prefect and House Captain by her fellow
students and appointed Head Girl by the staff.
University followed where Pam completed a Bachelor of Economics and Politics, excelling
in her studies and going on to commence a Master of Economics while working as Research
Assistant to the Dean of Economics and Politics.
While undertaking her Masters degree, Pam was offered a PhD place and tutoring position
at Cornell University in the USA, a school known for its Labour Economics and Labour
Relations. But all these plans had to be changed when a fellow student from high
school, Mal Sandon (16/9/45), re-entered Pam’s life and a whirlwind 3 month romance
With Mal planning to return to studies in Canada, Pam headed to Vancouver to meet
Mal on 1st May, at the expiration of her university contract; and a month later,
on 6 June 1969, they were married in Vancouver.
It was a Registry Office wedding with no friends or family; but her father and mother,
Jack and Lesley Harland, visited them in June 1970 to celebrate their first wedding
anniversary. During this visit the Sandons and the Harlands headed across Canada
in a blue VW and tents. It was the first time Jack had been in a tent since the
War and Lesley had never camped.
Pamela Maude (Pam) HARLAND- Mrs. Mal Sandon
b. 5 August 1946
m. 6 June 1969
Pam was the much loved only child of Jack and Lesley Harland. She remembers her
childhood with great affection.
As well as offering a welcome retreat for the relatives, their home also played a
significant role in Mal’s election to parliament. In Australia, candidates for parliament
must raise the money for their own personal election campaign. One of the key means
they adopted was to turn the top of the house or the downstairs verandahs into a
restaurant and run “Sunday Lunch at Carrum”. Being blessed with many friends who
were fine chefs, they cooked the food, Pam and Mal provided the wine and their friends
paid for their meal. These were wonderful occasions and many of the lunches were
completed in the dark. While they no longer have the need for fund raising lunches,
the Sandon’s can promise any visitors memorable and long lunches!!!! Some things
The family home was sold in 2005, it being time to downsize and move into a newer
home with less maintenance and gardens, and more suited to the travel lifestyle they
have adopted. The sea views have gone but in their place they have views over the
golf course and the guest wing is still available for overseas family visitors. The
visit of Jan and Joe Loughlin from Kelowna BC in November 2008 was a bit hit with
In 1986, when Pam turned 40, the desire to travel outside Australia became a reality
and the first of many trips to Europe took place, including a number of visits to
Belfast and California to visit family. Pam and Mal have travelled extensively since
then and have also welcomed many overseas visitors – friends and family- to stay.
Since Mal left politics in 1996, they accelerated their travels and, just to keep
their minds active and the bank balance topped up, they established a small consultancy
business in the area of government relations. While the business has all but finished,
the love of travel continues to be refined - as does their love of wine. The Harland
Cellar was established in the late 90’s and has been added to regularly. It is regarded
as offering a real incentive to those overseas friends and relatives who are contemplating
travelling to Australia!!! When in Australia, Pam is an active and interested
Grandma who spends lots of time with her 4 grandchildren.
Then there is golf which is an essential part of life both while travelling and at
home. Pam was never much of a sports-person, but in golf she has found her place,
becoming a Pennant Squad member and reducing her handicap from 41 to 15, despite
only taking up the game in her 50’s.
On August, 2006 when Pam turned 60, Mal organized a surprise party with a twist.
Having married overseas without family and friends they renewed their vows and exchanged
rings in front of all remaining (and local) family and friends. It was a night to
remember, indeed a week to remember, in what has been a wonderful life.
On his visit in 1997 for Jodi’s wedding, Robin wrote of their house as follows:-
“…Their beachside house is a two storey wooden structure, white with a blue trim.
It seems to divide naturally into three parts, like Gaul. The whole top of the
house is a single T-shaped room, which has an open-plan kitchen, a dining area and
a sitting room whose huge picture window looks out onto the ever-changing views of
beach and bay. When this wonderful space is filled with music from Dermod’s recent
recordings, that sense of contentment is complete. Underneath all of this, is an
even larger living area, again complete with kitchen, dining and sitting room space,
but with three bedrooms and an office to boot. The third part is a granny flat at
the very front of the house, where Paddy and I are housed, and we too have a complete
living area, where we could be completely independent, should such isolation or quarantining
be required. There is a fourth dimension in the provision of a covered verandah
at the front, side, and back of the house. Finally, there is a garden where profusion
is the operative word.”