Sosuishi-ryu Bu jutsu of Australia was established on the 12th July 1965, by Pat Harrington, Betty Huxley and her husband Michael. The Founders have sole grading rights in Bu jutsu issued by licence charter, known as the Menkyo System. The Menkyo, Mokuroku system of grading dates back to 1650 when the Sosuishi-ryu system was established. (see History of Nippon Sosuishi-ryu).
Mrs. Betty Huxley, Mr. Michael Huxley and Miss Patricia Harrington, the founders of Sosuishi-ryu Bu Jutsu in Australia on the 12th July, 1965.
International Crest of Sosuishi-ryu
Pat Harrington, Betty Huxley and Michael Huxley established Sosuishi-ryu Bu Jutsu Australia on the 12th July, 1965. Pat studied Ju Jutsu from the 15th inheritor of Nippon Sosuishi-ryu, the late Shusaku Shitama in 1964, during her first visit to Japan.
Shusaku Shitama died on the 31st March, 1965. After his death, a charter was issued in 1966, by the late Masanobu Yoshimura Sensei, who was the Chief Instructor or head of "Karo" (the highest ranking members of Nippon Sosuishi-ryu), and who managed the administrative affairs during that time. The charter document gave Pat Harrington, Betty Huxley and Michael Huxley full autonomy and grading rights in the Menkyo system.
On the 17th November, 1967, Pat Harrington, Betty Huxley and Michael Huxley established the first Shotokan Karate Association in Australia, taking over a charter formerly held by the late H.E. (Eric) Steele. They later re-established it and renamed it Sekiryukan Karate, then incorporated it officially into their Sosuishi-ryu charter.
Pat Harrington and Betty Huxley gave up their former professions and set about to establish branches in state and private schools, colleges, universities, RSL Youth Clubs, YMCA and YWCA clubs throughout the Sydney and the metropolitan area. By 1970, they had established seventeen martial arts venues, and drove hundreds of kilometres each week teaching over one thousand students.
Pat Harrington and Betty Huxley founded the Epping RSL Youth (Sosuishi-ryu) Martial Arts Club on 12th June, 1969 and their first classes were held on canvas mats in the old ballet room, of the Epping School of Arts Hall, in Oxford Street, Epping. By November, 1970, the classes had exploded in membership and it was necessary to be transferred to the main hall upstairs. Problems arose when the floor of the main hall had to be replaced and soon after the classes were transferred to St. Albans Hall nearby. When the floor was completed, the martial arts classes were established back in the main hall of the School of Arts and an additional storage room was built on to store the judo mats.
In the thirty years that the Epping RSL Martial Arts Dojo has been functioning, many Sosuishi-ryu Instructors and Renshi (trainee instructors) have taught there, as follows; Ron Mason, Lynne Tough, Renato Delfatti, Denise Pont, Lee Ann Hennessey, Roy Wilkins, Sandra McCuish, Barry Windeatt, Peter Georgordis and Emmanuel Marsionis. Currently, Peter Williams Sensei is the Chief Instructor with Doug Matthews Sensei and Renshi (trainee instructors) Robert McNaught and Tom Crooks. All four Instructors are doing an excellent job in all disciplines, keeping the Epping RSL (Sosuishi-ryu) Martial Arts Club standards very well maintained and the membership growth steadily improving.
One of their foremost students, Sandra McCuish established branches at Collaroy, Dee Why and Avalon, expanding the membership even more.
Another of their students, Lee Anne Hennessey opened a branch of Sosuishi-ryu on the Gold Coast in Queensland in 1972 which became quite successful.
Another branch was established by James and Janet McGee in Quirindi, NSW.
Pat Harrington and Betty Huxley coached Women's judo at Sydney University and their Intervarsity Women's judo team won the individual and team's events in Tasmania in 1969 and the individual event in 1970 in Adelaide. The team Captain, Betty Carter won the University Blue's Award for the team' outstanding efforts in Intervarsity judo. Betty Carter established a branch of Sosuishi-ryu in Perth, Western Australia after graduating from Sydney University.
Pat Harrington and Betty Huxley had a car accident in 1972 whilst travelling to their Queensland branch, which forced them to give up their strenuous travelling and teaching schedule. They put their black belt instructors into the branches already established, whilst they concentrated on the main dojo, the Sydney YWCA in Liverpool Street, until it was demolished in 1980. For two years their dojo was located in a temporary premises at Albion Street Children's Court complex.
In 1983 Pat Harrington and Betty Huxley transferred their classes over to the Sydney YMCA, and moved their Hombu dojo to Barden Street, Arncliffe. The Arncliffe centre was a very successful martial arts centre because it had two separate halls, and was a very functional centre for combined club training. All branches came together once per month on a Wednesday evening for combined club training in judo, ju jutsu and karate.
In 1978, the Sutherland Shire Council approached Pat Harrington and Betty Huxley to establish martial art classes in the Engadine Youth Centre. After six months the Youth Centre was not large enough to cope with the increase in membership, so the Senior Citizens Hall was also utilised. One year later the classes were transferred into the Community Centre Hall. By 1980, the membership had increased to such an extent that combined club judo tournaments were held with more than two hundred competitors entering the events and the hall was packed with their parents and friends as spectators.
The Sydney YMCA had excellent camping facilities, and in 1984, Sensei Huxley organised an excellent Training Camp at Yarramundi. The Camp Yarramundi Training Camps became so popular that they were organised at Easter as well as other long week-ends as the years followed. We were able to practice the full martial arts programmes with both outdoor and indoor training in judo, ju jutsu, karate, iai-jutsu, bo-jutsu and jo-jutsu.. Self defense training included "ambush training" in dense bushland and rocky terrain. Lectures were held on anatomy and physiology, the history of karate, first-aid, esoteric principles of the martial arts, and elementary massage.
In 1986, the Illawong and Menai branches were established by Renshi Jim Ferguson and Dympna Dean Sensei. Dympna Dean Sensei later established a branch in Lawson in the Blue Mountains area, and Renshi Elizabeth Ferguson took over the Illawong and Menai branches with her husband Jim and their daughter Lisa and son Darren.
In 1987, Anthony Pritchard Sensei established a branch in Thirroul on the South Coast of Sydney.
In 1994, Glenn Wheeldon Sensei established a branch in Hurstville Boys' High School, which grew in membership very quickly and his students became successful in state and national all-styles karate tournaments.
In 1997, Shane Chapman Sensei established a branch at Hurstville and membership began to grow. Combining his classes with members of Hurstville Boys' High students, both clubs soon became successful in All-styles karate tournaments both state and national in 1998 and 1999.
In 1995, Harrington and Huxley Sensei resigned from the Sydney YMCA and closed the Arncliffe branch. The Hombu (Headquarters) dojo was transferred to Engadine Community Centre Hall.
In thirty five years of propagating the Japanese Martial Arts in Australia, Harrington and Huxley Sensei have personally travelled to Japan twenty four times and have organised eleven group tours to Japan in which members of Sosuishi-ryu Australia have visited and trained with the current 16th Inheritor, Manzo Shitama at the Hombu dojo (Sekiryukan) of Nippon Sosuishi-ryu. When in Kyoto the groups have trained at Seibukan Academy, the headquarters of the All Japan Budo Federation owned by the late Masafumi Suzuki. When in Tokyo the group trains at the Kodokan Judo Institute.
Reunions are held every five years to commemorate the continued propagation of Sosuishi-ryu in Australia and a group tour to Japan is usually organised. The next group tour is scheduled for December, 2000 to celebrate 35 years of teaching the Sosuishi-ryu system in Australia. A commemorative booklet is produced for the occasion which contains an outline history, photographs of all the black belt graduates on each honour roll for each discipline with Sosuishi-ryu Australia such as judo, jutsu and karate.
The Late Shusaku Shitama, 15th Inheritor of Nippon Sosuishi-ryu and Pat Harrington, Founder of Sosuishi-ryu Australia, at the Hombu Dojo, Sekiryukan in Fukuoka, Japan in August, 1964
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