In memoriam: Alan Connell, founder of the Penrith Museum of Printing

Alan Connell (1922-2020)

Alan Connell, founder of the Penrith Museum of Printing in Australia, passed away on Saturday 11th January 2020.

In 1939 Alan was indentured for five years to the printer J.S. Horton from whom he learned art and craft of hand composing and the operation of the linotype linecasting machine. He served the last two years of his apprenticeship at the Nepean Times newspaper in Penrith, which was owned in those days by Sydney Colless. His apprenticeship was interrupted by the start of the Second World War at the end of which he returned to finish his training period with the Nepean Times.

The printing trade filled his life and he stayed loyal to his job until his retirement. In the late 1980s, Rodger Colless, successor to Syndey, was also retiring and closing the Nepean Times and was going to send all the old machinery to Sims Metal Yard. Alan’s daughter Kim said to her Dad that it would be a shame to see it all go. And that was when he decided to keep the machinery and open a working printing museum.

Dedicated to the art of printing he spent his retired life saving the old equipment of the Nepean Times which became the foundation of The Penrith Museum of Printing which opened on the 2nd June, 2001 – on Alan’s daughter’s birthday..

Read more…

about the reopening of the Penrith Museum of Printing in 2018 after an eighteen month refurbishment.

[With thanks to the Penrith Museum of Printing and Alan Connell’s granddaughter Trish Hickey.]