Work has begun at ‘Ensor’, Victoria Parade, East Melbourne, a property owned by the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital. RBA have been commissioned by the hospital to document and manage the refurbishment of the roofs and facade of the substantial double storey Victorian villa. The building was designed c1874-5 by architects Crouch and Wilson, whose other well-known projects included the Victorian School for the Deaf, Prahran Town Hall, Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind and over 40 churches.

The elaborate facade incorporates many decorative cast iron and zinc elements, including a column design patented by Angus McLean in 1873. The columns are constructed of sheet metal and filled with concrete to give the appearance of solid metal but were lighter and cheaper to construct. Miles Lewis has written about these columns and the information can be found on page 8.07.11 at the following link: http://www.mileslewis.net/australian-building/pdf/08-metals/8.07-ornamental-cast-iron.pdf.

Ensor from Victoria Parade

Maryborough Railway Station

Stage 3 works at Maryborough Railway Station, refurbishing the platform verandah, are now well underway. The design of the platform verandah includes a glazed and timber lantern roof and purpose built eaves gutter with curved structural downpipes incorporated into cast iron columns. Many of the original ribbed glass panes to the lantern roof will be retained.

Although the extension of the railway line from Castlemaine to Maryborough had been considered since 1859, the first Maryborough Railway Station building, an example of the Dunolly Style, was not constructed until 1874. The existing station building, which quickly replaced the earlier one, was opened in late 1891. An article in the local paper of the time commented that the new station building made a large impression on the traveller arriving by train and that the interiors would be suitable for a mansion, though many years would pass before Maryborough could live up to its station.

Painted column reflecting original paint scheme
Original drawings of the column

Recently, there has been a renewal of interest in the station and limited passenger services have been re-established. It has become a destination on the central Victorian Goldfields tourist route.

Strathbogie Shire

Work has progressed to the second round of heritage sites to be included in the Strathbogie Shire Heritage study. The shire contains many interesting sites, not just buildings, including the Eliza Forlonge memorial (see photo above). Mrs Forlonge, along with her sister-in-law, imported the first wool sheep into Victoria in 1835.
Visit the following website for further information on the ‘Kelly country’ shire http://www.strathbogie.vic.gov.au.


Speaking of memorials, the Melbourne University cenotaph was moved from its original site when the carpark was constructed in 1972 under the south lawn. However, there is limited room at the present site and RBA have been commissioned to document the second relocation of the cenotaph to a more prominent site. This will allow greater access for participation in Anzac ceremonies; particularly poignant with the 100 year anniversary of the first landing at Gallipoli in the not too far distant future.

16 April 2011

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