Table Mountain plays host to a special “homecoming” birthday celebration

David Bester spent part of his formative years living in the Table Mountain Cableway House with his parents. On 21 January 2023, Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company organised a special “homecoming” birthday celebration for David, his first time visiting his former mountaintop home in almost 80 years. Also read: How the mountains in the Mother City got their names “My... Read more → The post Table Mountain plays host to a special “homecoming” birthday celebration appeared first on CapeTown ETC.

Table Mountain plays host to a special “homecoming” birthday celebration

David Bester spent part of his formative years living in the Table Mountain Cableway House with his parents.

On 21 January 2023, Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company organised a special “homecoming” birthday celebration for David, his first time visiting his former mountaintop home in almost 80 years.


Also read: How the mountains in the Mother City got their names


“My newly married parents lived in the Cableway House on top of the mountain after my dad was appointed cable car operator in 1943. My mother was pregnant with me at the time, and in January 1944 she gave birth to me,” David Bester explained.

Picture: TMACC / Kimberley Titus

At the age of just two weeks, Bester went to live with his parents in the Table Mountain Cableway House.

He was the first baby to travel up to the top of the mountain in a cable car.

But by the age of eleven months, it was decided that it had become too dangerous to have a crawling toddler living on top of this 1067-metre-high mountain.

This prompted his parents to leave their unusual mountaintop home.

Picture: TMACC / Kimberley Titus

“I have fond memories of my early days living on the mountain. Just imagine being a young toddler and exploring the natural beauty of the mountain. Table Mountain was my playpark. Sadly, I don’t have any photographs left over from those days, but it was a moving experience to again see my childhood home,” said Bester.

He added, “This was my first ever visit back to the mountain since those early days, and I thank the Cableway Company for assisting me and my family in making this “homecoming” journey a reality.”

He spent most of Saturday morning showing family members around the upper mountain plateau, where he used to play as a toddler. He explained that his mom used to serve tea and sandwiches to visitors in what is now the Shop at the Top building.

Picture: TMACC / Kimberley Titus

Over the course of its nine decades of operation, the Cableway has undergone three upgrades.

The first was the tiny car that Bester and his family would have used, then improvements in 1958, 1974, and most recently in 1997 with the introduction of the Rotairs, cars with rotating floors.

Since it first began operating in 1929, the Cableway has carried over 30 million passengers to the top of Table Mountain.

“It was an honour welcoming David and his family back to the mountain, a site that has such deep personal significance for him. Birthdays are special occasions—and a birthday such as David’s is perhaps even more so,” said Wahida Parker, Managing Director of the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company (TMACC).

She added, “I hope that more people will come and celebrate their birthdays with us.”

All South African residents qualify for a free return cableway ticket, valid for the month of their birth.

Also read: 

How to enjoy Cape Town’s famous Table Mountain National Park

Picture: TMACC / Kimberley Titus

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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