It is with sadness that the Club informs you that Peter Goldthorpe passed away on 24th November 2021.

A memorial/celebration service for Peter will be held on Monday 6th December 2021 at 4.00 pm at the Cottesloe Civic Centre Memorial Hall.

Swanbourne Nedlands SLSC Vale Peter Goldthorpe

Peter Goldthorpe Obituary – The West Australian 22 February 2022

Peter joined the Club as a Juvenile in the 1954/55 Season, gaining his Qualifying Certificate on 15th December 1956 and then his Bronze Medallion, WA 258 on 16th February 1957 with the Swanbourne Nedlands SLSC. Along with Peter, the balance of his Bronze Medallion squad included Ron Gadsby, Michael Bemrose, Eric Griffin, Bruce Stamp, Ian Stamp and Rob Kemp. Peter transferred to Cottesloe SLSC at the start of the 1961/62 season.

Most recently Peter was present at the Nipper Program supporting his daughter Davina, an Age Group Manager, and his grandchildren Stirling, Neve, Hadley and Amity. He was also a regular early morning beachgoer, riding his bicycle to the beach and fishing at Vera View beach, just south of Swanbourne Beach.

Peter was an outstanding swimmer and a successful competitor in Belt Races, Surf Races and Rescue and Resuscitation events. His competitive record at Swanbourne is listed on the following pages. During his last winter at the Club he began stroking the Reg Trigg surf boat. Peter Goldthorpe, Edwin Jaggard, Ian Barry, Len Bath and David Batt spent every Sunday afternoon of the winter rowing and cracking waves in Swanbourne’s elderly double ended plank boat Reg Trigg, an ideal craft in which to learn the rudiments of boat handling.

Swanbourne’s post-war swimming strength faded away until the late 1950s, when a further resurgence occurred.

Leading it was Peter Goldthorpe, whose older brother, John was at one time a member. Peter Goldthorpe or “Choppers”, as he was later known, had come up through the Club from the Juveniles. Among his contemporaries were Bob Gray, Baxter Hook, Rod Hutton, Gary Fletcher and a number of others who gave the Club its greatest junior strength for many years. Peter Goldthorpe was swimming coach Jack Hughes’ star pupil; before long several other Swanbourne Juniors were training with him too, so the Club’s fortunes began to revive.

While a member of Swanbourne, (for he eventually transferred to Cottesloe) Peter Goldthorpe was far and away the Club’s outstanding swimmer. He had an almost effortless slow stroke and could perform well in either calm or very rough conditions. As a Cadet and Junior he had an excellent record, climaxed by the Junior Belt Race Championship in 1959. However Peter’s problem, and it was one which Bob Milne also had to face, was lack of competition within the Club. Colin Cook was now living in the country and making infrequent appearances, while Baxter Hook and Edwin Jaggard were never consistent enough to really push him, although the latter beat Peter for the Club Belt Race title in 1959, the year that he won the State Championship. Eventually in the 1961-62 season Peter Goldthorpe transferred to Cottesloe where he was to build up an outstanding competitive record as well as serving as Captain for many years. He is now a Life Member of that club.

Extract from Striving To Serve, Swanbourne-Nedlands Surf Life Saving Club, The First Fifty Years 1932-1982, written by: Ross Bosworth and Ed Jaggard with assistance from Reg Trigg.


Peter’s involvement was as Committeeman in 1959/60 and as Assistant Gear Steward in 1960/61. His father Harry was Vice President from 1954/55 to 1960/61, Publicity Officer in 1958/59 and Assistant Cadet Organiser in 1959/60. Peter’s daughter Davina has been an Age Group Manager from 2017/18 to 2020/21.


Trophy Events

Presidents’ Cup (½mile = 800 metres)

Second in 1957/58 and 1960/61

Fastest in 1957/58 and 1960/61

Oldham Memorial Cup (¾ mile = 1200 metres)

Fastest in 1956/57, 1957/58, 1958/59 and 1959/60

Third in 1958/59

Second in 1959/60

F.E Ford Cup (1 mile = 1600 metres)

Fastest in 1955/56 (Cadets), 1956/57, 1958/59 and 1959/60

Winner in 1958/59 and 1959/60

Caris Cup (Club Marathon)

First Cadet in 1955/56

Fastest in 1956/57 and 1959/60

Second in 1957/58 and 1959/60


Points Races

Long Swim

Cadet Champion in 1956/57

Junior Champion in 1958/59

Open Champion in 1959/60

Fastest Times in 1959/60 and 1960/61


Club Championships

Club Champion Surf Race

Juvenile Champion in 1954/55

Cadet Champion in 1955/56 and 1956/57

Junior Champion in 1957/58 and 1958/59

Open Champion in 1959/60 and 1960/61

Club Champion Belt Race

Juvenile Champion in 1954/55

Cadet Champion in 1955/56 and 1956/57

Junior Champion in 1957/58

Open Champion in 1959/60 and 1960/61


Annual Trophies

Patrol of the Year – City of Nedlands Shield Patrol of the Year

1958/59 – No. 3 Patrol Peter Goldthorpe (Captain) Rod Hutton (Vice Captain) Jeff Dunkerton, Garry Fletcher, Frank Griffin, John Durbridge, Ray House, James Walton, Jimmy Turley, James Anderson, Len Bath, Ian Barry

1959/60 – No. 3 Patrol Peter Goldthorpe (Captain) Jeff Dunkerton, Garry Fletcher, Len Bath, Ian Barry, Ian Jones, Wally Jones, Ronald Wensley

1960/61 – No. 1 Patrol – Peter Goldthorpe (Captain) Len Bath, Ian Barry, Barrie Kernaghan, Thomas Morley, Norm  Sladden, John Power, John. Holt


State Championships

State Champion

1955/56        Cadet Rescue & Resuscitation  with Eric Griffin, Francis Griffin, Baxter Hook, Bob Gray, Rod Hutton

1955/56        Cadet Surf Race

1956/57        Cadet Surf Race

1957/58        Junior Surf Teams with Baxter Hook, Robert (Bob) Gray, Rodney (Rod) Hutton

1958/59        Junior Surf Belt Race


Silver Medallist

1955/56        Cadet Surf Belt Race

1956/57        Junior Surf Belt Race

1956/57        Junior Surf Race

1958/59        Junior Surf Race


Bronze Medallist

1957/58        Junior Belt Race

1957/58        Junior Surf Race


Australian Championships


Bronze Medallist

1958/59        Junior Surf Belt Race          Mooloolaba, Queensland


Peter Goldthorpe in the Belt,
Eric Griffin (2nd Line), Baxter Hook (3rd Line), Rod Hutton(1st Line), Garry Fletcher (Reel)

Peter Goldthorpe diving at the start of a Belt Race