150 Years Stories

150 Years of Stories

Many people and events have made up OCAV's 150 years. We would like you to meet some of the people and find out about the events that helped shape the organisation.

Helen Mallett was an independent woman who left home as a teenager to stay with friends, quite unheard of in the 1870s. She earned her living as a dressmaker and owned her own shop in Gippsland before returning to Prahran and then into Rushall Park in 1932.

Read More

In 1968 ten self-contained homes were built around a courtyard garden at Rushall Park. Known as Pratt Court, the new homes were a tribute to four generations of support to the Old Colonists.

Read More

Anne Jeffery loved Rushall Park. She worked in the village as secretary to the superintendent starting in 1942 and donated money to build and live in her own cottage until failing health saw her move to the village’s nursing home where she died in 1994.

Read More

Ian Rollo Currie’s name appears in each of OCAV’s four villages. The influence of the Victorian grazier at OCAV began in 1962 and continues today.

Read More

Tragedy actor Gustavus Vaughan Brooke (1818-1866), was a friend and partner of founder George Coppin. As a tribute to the relationship, the G V Brooke cottage was built and opened by the Australasian Dramatic and Musical Association in 1876.

Read More

Theodotus Sumner and his wife Sarah were two of the Association’s most generous philanthropists, with a deep interest in Rushall Park.

Read More

Over 1,000 Victorians flocked to the Association’s ‘Meadow Party’ for an afternoon of boomerang throwing, Punch and Judy Show, performing dogs, and champagne. The fete was attended by the Governor of Victoria the Earl of Hopetoun. Three new cottages were ‘promised’ to be built and endowed immediately.

Read More

Actor George Coppin knew only too well the hardships that many actors faced in early colonial times. Just as he saw a need to provide homes for ‘necessitous old colonists’ so too did he see the need to set up an asylum for ‘decayed actors.’ The Australasian Dramatic and Musical Association was founded in 1871.

Read More

As a charitable cause, the ‘asylum for decayed actors’ was not popular with potential donors. After protracted legal negotiations, the land, three homes and five actors were transferred to the care of the Old Colonists’ Association. Nevertheless, Coppin’s vision to provide homes for actors, musicians and performers lives on today with broadcasters, musicians, actors, and artists living in Rushall Park and the other three villages.

Read More

Garry Wilson, one of OCAV’s youngest ever residents, had the childhood most kids could only dream about. He lived in a quaint old village, rode his bike through the winding streets every day after school and feasted on the scones and cakes the locals fed him and his brothers.

Read More

Lyn and Keith Geer moved to Leith Park because OCAV offers all the levels of care they might require down the track. “We thought it was a good time to make the move, while we are both still fit."

Enquire today about securing a position at one of Melbourne's longest established and highly reputable independent living estates.

Enquire Now