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Barney Roberts Barney Roberts i(A18229 works by) (birth name: Bernard Knyvet Roberts)
Born: Established: 31 Jan 1920 Flowerdale, Wynyard - Somerset area, Northwest Tasmania, Tasmania, ; Died: Ceased: 14 Oct 2005 Flowerdale, Wynyard - Somerset area, Northwest Tasmania, Tasmania,
Gender: Male
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BiographyHistory

Tasmanian writer and poet Barney Roberts was mainly educated by his mother who was a classical scholar and had run her own school in Victoria. His father was a farmer known for his quotations from Ruskin, Wells and Emerson. Roberts went to high school in Burnie and worked as a bank clerk for three years before World War 2. Captured in Greece in 1941, he was a prisoner of war for four years, during which time he cut trees in Austria. At this time he also wrote, as he described, 'doggerel verse and several bad plays' (Directory of Australian Poets, 1980).

When he returned to Australia in 1947, he set up a dairy farm near Flowerdale living there until his death. These experiences provided a background to his activities as a conservationist, and a trustee and president of the Tasmanian Peace Trust. Roberts also had a nursery which was managed by two of his sons, Max and Bruce (q.v.), after he retired. He did a writing course in the 1960s, writing a history of his town, Flowerdale to 1963 (1963), and had his first fiction published in 1972 with three of his entries in the FAW/Advocate Story Competition. He contributed to many magazines (Patterns, Overland, The Bulletin, Inprint, Walkabout, Mattoid etc) and newspapers (Canberra Times, Courier Mail, Advocate (Burnie), Mercury (Hobart)). Roberts was awarded an Honorary DLitt by the University of Tasmania in 2005. He also ran the publishing business 'Robin Books'.

Pete Hay (q.v.) in Tasmania Forty Degrees South (2006, Winter) said: 'He was Tasmania's own farmer-poet - our equivalent, if you like, of Robert Frost. He was a peerless writer of place and nature'.

Most Referenced Works

Awards for Works

y separately published work icon A Kind of Cattle Canberra Sydney : Australian War Memorial Collins , 1985 Z286735 1985 single work autobiography war literature
1986 winner New South Wales Premier's Literary Awards Special Award for the International Year of Peace
The Interview 1977 single work short story
— Appears in: Quadrant , July vol. 21 no. 7 1977; (p. 35-36) Tales I Carry with Me 1988; (p. 55-62)
1974 winner Rolf Boldrewood Short Story Award

Known archival holdings

University of New South Wales Australian Defence Force Academy Australian Defence Force Academy Library (ACT)
Last amended 3 Jul 2007 09:45:42
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