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Totara Estate’s ingenuity has won it the Victorian Heritage Celebrations’ Fotographix Photo Reproduction Competition.

The Totara Estate team got so close to the original viewers have to look closely to pick which was which.

The Victorian photo shows estate cook Jimmy Hoey giving food to a swagman.

The 21st century version shows Graeme Simpson as the swagman and Mark Chua as the cook, in the same location at the cookhouse doorway.

‘‘We had been wanting to do a recreation of this photograph for a while and this was the opportunity to put it together for the Oamaru Victorian competition,’’ Totara Estate property manager Keren Mackay said.

‘‘Art direction was a combination of Annie Baxter and Diane Lee and much fun was had by all.

‘‘Mark turned up in shorts and looking a long way from Jimmy. The apron was too clean to start with but the judicious application of chocolate sauce soon sorted that.

‘‘It’s not until you start to do this that you realise the detail in the photograph.

‘‘Jimmy is actually rather dapper and we found a Ralph Lauren scarf that matched the one he is wearing in the original picture.”

The man posing as a swagger in the original photograph was Doug Brown, who was a groom on the estate.

‘‘Why he was posing as a swagger we do not know. Maybe there was none around the day the photographer came and they wanted to tell that story.

‘‘We still don’t really know what the food is that he is handing to the swagger.
Jimmy Hoey was also a mystery to Ms Mackay.

‘‘He was obviously an important part of the estate for a number of years towards the end of the 19th century.

‘‘We have photos and stories but as we don’t have his Chinese name, we can’t trace where he went or where he came from.

‘‘We are hoping that one day someone will come in and say ‘Hey — that’s my great­grandfather!’

‘‘He is given pride of place in the old cookhouse.’’

Oamaru photographer David Sutton took the new image.