Remembering WMC

IF MINING executives or speculators are looking for a spot of summer reading, they could do worse than pick up a copy of Martin Summons’ new history of Western Mining, perhaps to from learn the lessons of the past, and avoid repeating the same pitfalls.

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Mandarins & Mavericks: Remembering Western Mining 1933-2005 comes from the pen of former finance journo and investor relations executive Martin Summons.

The corporate history tells the story of the company that is (arguably) described as the last great, independent, truly Australian resources house: Western Mining Corporation.

The book, originally suggested by WMC's long-time historian Gilbert Ralph, was funded by some 80 ex-workers and contains scores of previously unpublished recollections from WMC luminaries such as of Roy Woodall, Sir Arvi Parbo and others.

While not a warts-and-all scandal sheet it tells a little more of the unvarnished truth than is usual in the business world, from those in the know.

From its roots as a small London...