Tamar wine region digital museum recognised

YEARS of finding, photographing and uploading the history of vineyards in the Tamar Valley has resulted in reward for Humbug Reach owner Sally McShane.

Mrs McShane recently received an award for Service to the Industry from the Tamar Valley Wine Region for her work in compiling a digital museum highlighting the trials and triumphs of 32 grape growers in the region.

The digital collection, which took Mrs McShane about two years to gather with the help of volunteers, began after a conversation with industry stalwart Graham Wiltshire.

``He's helped so many people through the years,'' Mrs McShane said.

A particularly heartbreaking episode in her mission had been uncovering the letters of Jean Miguet, Mrs McShane said.

Frenchman Mr Miguet founded La Provence Vineyard and tried to sell wine from his vineyard for more than 20 years through the mid-20th century.

He still had not received a licence when he died.

Mrs McShane said it was now unthinkable that a vineyard would not feature cellar door sales.

Other features of the Tamar Valley Wine Route's heritage collection are meticulously measured and recorded awards and machinery, all to nationally-recognised museum standards.

None of the work was a burden to Mrs McShane, who admitted she didn't expect the project to be so time-consuming.

``Wine becomes part of your life - part of a well-lived life,'' she said.

``It's stupid but you just get obsessed with it.

``The history adds to it.

``Wine is a story in a glass.'' 

Access the Tamar Valley Wine Route Collection here.

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