Vivid Publishing - Book Publishers Australia

The Boy Who Told Stories:
The Seymours of Dunsborough

Errol Seymour

An Intriguing Account of a Pioneering Family in Western Australia

For well over 100 years, the Seymours were recognised as the leading family in the local Dunsborough community. William Frederick Seymour, who arrived from England as a whaler in 1838, established his Dunsborough farm around 1850 while managing the nearby Castle Rock whaling station. He married Mary Scanlon, a bride-ship girl from famine-stricken Ireland. Mary had the first white child born in Dunsborough, and eventually bore eight more children. For ten years William and Mary enjoyed an idyllic lifestyle on their new farm, next to the gorgeous Dunsborough beach. Then disaster struck. During the following few years, they lost their three eldest children in tragic circumstances. And William was charged with the murder of one of his employees. He died not long after, at the age of only 54. Mary survived her husband by 45 years, astonishingly raising her young family while successfully maintaining the farm.

Out of this desperate family crisis arose the leader of the next generation of Seymours; second son Robert John, who was only four years old when his father died. He expanded the farm on to adjacent property resulting in the Seymour dynasty owning over 400 priceless acres with extensive beachfront. This land entirely encompassed the area now occupied by the Dunsborough shopping and business precinct; today some of Western Australia’s most sought after real estate outside the Perth metropolitan area. Robert John built the first Dunsborough store and the first bakery as well as starting the first garage; initiating the birth of the present township.

This book places on record the absorbing stories of this remarkable family whose contribution to so much of the history of Dunsborough now goes unnoticed. The author, Errol Seymour, is a great grandson of William Frederick Seymour. Errol spent his early childhood on the Seymour farm until he was nine years old, when his parents moved to Perth. His story reflects a world changing at a frantic pace: from nineteenth century whaling off Western Australia’s coast to today’s challenging extraction of its offshore oil and gas reserves.

Postage and handling Australia wide: $15 per copy. Books can be picked up from author’s residence in Perth, free of postage and handling, by prior arrangement, email or phone 9293 3502. Books can also be picked up free of postage and handling from Text & Co bookshop in Dunsborough, 34 Dunn Bay Road, phone 9750 5531.




In the News

Busselton Mail Newspaper: July 25, 2019 - Emma Kirk
"Scandals, secrets, tragedies and heroes are the basis of a book The Boy Who Told Stories written by Errol Seymour whose ancestors were early settlers of Dunsborough."
Click here to read the article.

6PR - Radio interview by Chris Ilsey
"West Aussie author Errol Seymour on his new look at Dunsborough’s past"


About the Author

Dr Errol Seymour

Dr Errol Seymour has two degrees from the University of Western Australia, Bachelor of Engineering with First Class Honours and Master of Engineering Science, together with a PhD in Engineering from Harvard University, USA. The Australia Day Honours Awards, January 26, 2020, announced the appointment of Dr Errol Seymour as a Member of the Order of Australia, AM, for significant service to the oil and gas industry, and to engineering.

Errol commenced his career with Shell Oil Company in Houston, Texas, where he gained an international reputation in undersea pipeline technology. On returning to Australia he joined the then fledging oil and gas company, later to become Woodside Energy, which had been set up to develop Western Australia’s North West Shelf gas fields. His first task: design the offshore pipeline to bring gas and liquids from the offshore production platforms to the onshore plant; the world’s largest such pipeline at the time. It would deliver gas for 200,000 domestic and commercial users in Western Australia plus six million tonnes per annum of liquefied natural gas for export to Japan, on which 63 million Japanese customers would depend. Following this assignment, Errol worked his way up through the Woodside organisation to become Manager of all Woodside projects and Member of the Head Office Corporate Management Team of Australia’s largest oil and gas company.



The Seymours of Dunsborough by Errol Seymour
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ISBN: 978-1-925846-21-8
Format: Hardcover & dust jacket / ribbon marker
Extent: 672 pages (250 mm x 180 mm)
RRP: $45
Publisher: Vivid Publishing
Category: Non-Fiction -- Historical Memoir