WELCOME TO VIRTUAL YALLOURN

Journey back with us to the old township of Yallourn in Latrobe Valley, Victoria – a unique town built between the 1920s and 1950s by the State Electricity Commission of Victoria (SECV) to house their workers and then dug up by the same SECV for the coal beneath in the 1980s. This is our way of revisiting our town with our children and grandchildren.

In memory of Mavis & Paddy Mewett, who loved Yallourn so much. We have been able to upgrade our website thanks to the generosity of Kay Hall (Mewett) as a tribute to her parents. Our original software had to quickly be updated and we have now been able to stay in business. Stage 2 Redesign will make the site more user-friendly and even more informative...so please be patient and let's know if you have any suggestions.

See the many photos and house plans, read information, memories and stories. Most of all, play a part in it with us by adding your own photos and memories and help us name the various people in existing photos - for everyone to share. (To contribute, contact julie@yallourn.org to set up an account.) Ex-residents, please also take the time to add your family to the map (HERE).

For more information, visit YALLOURN ASSOCIATION at www.yallourn.org and please 'Like' our Facebook page.


MOST RECENT ENTRIES:

WATT A HOME IN YALLOURN

Submitted by Julie George on Thu, 09/04/2020 - 15:11

WATT’s OF YALLOURN

This is the story of my grandfather, James Alexander (Jim) Watt, and his family who moved to Yallourn in the mid-1920’s.

Jim was born January 1899 in Pennan, a small fishing village in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, to fisherman John and Barbara (nee Wiseman). He lived with his three younger brothers – Ben, George and Andy. Sadly, Barbara died during her fifth pregnancy in 1908.

After Barbara’s death, John continued fishing then served with the Royal Navy (RN) during WW1. The children were cared for by relatives, friends and in a widowed seaman’s boarding school in Aberdeen. My grandfather Jim also joined the RN in 1917 after putting his age up one year to enlist. Both survived the war.

On return to Pennan, life was not the same. Brothers Jim, Ben and George left Scotland for a new life in Australia arriving in Melbourne in April 1922. They were followed by Andy and their father John soon after. Initially they did odd jobs that included fruit picking in Shepparton. Soon after, all five men moved to Yallourn to construct the Yallourn SECV. They lived for over 5 years in site camps.

My grandfather Jim officially joined the SECV on 5 August 1924. In the 1920’s, he worked as a builder’s labourer, trades assistant, rigger and scaffolder.  Somehow Jim met a girl from Tasmania, Doris Hines, who at 21 years old was then living in Melbourne. On 1 February 1930 they were married at the Presbyterian Church in Malvern.

On 24 September, my father James Andrew (Jim 2nd) Watt was born, followed a year later by his sister Barbara. The family then lived at 10 Strzelecki Road, Yallourn.

About 1934, the family moved to Morwell Bridge. At this time, Jim worked as a power station lagger, trimmer and steam plant attendant. Working the fishing boats and RN steamship boilers made it easier to qualify for power station operations. By October 1945 he was employed as a Turbine Driver.   

TO READ MORE, PLEASE CLICK ON THE PDF LINK BELOW

IMAGES OF YALLOURN - 1994 - Hernes Oak Memorial Cairn - Peter Scott & Dorothy Taylor

Submitted by Julie George on Fri, 20/03/2020 - 16:06
Year
1994

A MEMORIAL  CAIRN AT HERNES OAK  - 1994

This is a photograph of Peter Scott and Dorothy Taylor unveiling a cairn in tribute to the community of Hernes Oak . The ceremony took place in 1994; and some 70 local people attended the special gathering.

NEW IDEA - 1925

Submitted by Julie George on Fri, 13/03/2020 - 10:58

YALLOURN - YEAR BY YEAR

The first sod in the Victorian Government’s  ambitious scheme, to generate electricity at Yallourn, was turned almost a century ago (1921); and for the next six decades, the township of Yallourn ‘took root, bloomed, withered  and  died’….

“Yallourn was swallowed by the coal mine it was built to serve”… ‘The Herald Sun’ May 2016.

In this history series for the Virtual Yallourn website, the monthly activities, shown in each year, are not necessarily momentous occasions in the town’s history but simply attempt to further highlight the personalities of the town and the myriad of events that made the local (and often national) news.

The walk down ‘Memory Lane’ (not to be confused with Meadow Lane which ran off Latrobe Avenue) begins in the year of 1925 when the plans of the SEC were well underway; and the unique ‘garden town’ of Yallourn was taking shape and creating interest far and wide.

TO READ MORE, click on the pdf link below

pdf document

STUDENTS OF YALLOURN  DURING WORLD WAR : II - 1943

Submitted by Julie George on Wed, 04/03/2020 - 11:57

These  photos were part of montage  of pictures  about Yallourn in the ‘Weekly Times’ on 11th August 1943  under the headline of  ‘Yallourn War Workers’ 

The caption under this photograph of Yallourn State School reads: "Children at the State School who, with children at the High School, have put £ 1 382  into War Savings Certificates, and £462 into the War Relief Fund."