March 20th, 2020Bringing history alive
THE unofficial history of …… series starts in April featuring the Daylesford Town Hall.
In collaboration with The Local, Alice’s Journeys Walking Tours will take you on a virtual unofficial history tour of the Daylesford Town Hall.
To do this we need your help. If you’re cooped up at home during the COVID-19 crisis, when would be a better time to share some of your local memories with the community?
In your own words, tell us about an interesting story or memory you have of an event you experienced at the Daylesford Town Hall. Events might include a debutante ball, ChillOut ball, civic ceremonies, football/netball presentation nights, comedy nights, school presentations, concerts, festivals, etc. Tell us the year, how old you were and what this experience meant to you. We’ll publish selected stories in TL and at www.alicesjourneys.com
At a cost of £4500, the Daylesford Town Hall, completed in 1886, is architectural gold. As such it was classified by Heritage Victoria in 1984. It’s one of the most stunning buildings in Daylesford, designed in the Victorian era style by English architect, George Johnson, who also designed the town halls of Fitzroy, Collingwood, Northcote, North Melbourne and Maryborough.
Take a close look and you’ll see some similarities. It’s a bold and striking building and, after 134 years remains in use for its original purpose, being council chambers at the front and an assembly hall in the rear. Prior to its completion council meetings were conducted in the local pubs.
The assembly hall was originally built to accommodate 1000 people – 700 people downstairs and 300 in the balcony. Did you know the town hall is built on the site of the town baths and water well? The town hall has survived bushfires, world wars, economic depressions and still stands tall and proud. If only the walls could talk.
Each month we’ll feature a new historical and socially significant site in the Central Highlands and ask you to share your stories. As we know you will have much to share, some will be selected for publication. So, email us your unofficial history stories of the Daylesford Town Hall along with any photos or copies of memorabilia to firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call on 0455 519 111.
Words: Lynda Poke