Timeline

A TRIP THROUGH OUR 150TH HISTORY

In 2019, the Old Colonist’ Association of Victoria marks its 150th anniversary. OCAV has grown and changed over these 150 years, but remains true to the vision of providing housing and support to older Victorians. This timeline is about the people who played a part, the names, places and achievements that have shaped us.

We invite you to explore our timeline. We will continue adding to the rich history.

1869 – 18751875 – 19001900 – 19251925 – 19501950 – 19751975 – 20002000 – Present

OCAV TIMELINE

Old Colonists’ Association of Victoria is founded

1869

George Seth Coppin calls a meeting at the Menzies Hotel to form the Old Colonists’ Association of Victoria.

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A permanent ‘Home’ for ‘necessitous Old Colonists’

1869

When George Coppin established the Old Colonists’ Association of Victoria, it was not merely about a social club for wealthy colonists. He was determined to help the pioneering colonists who were unable to provide for their old age. It was not all plain sailing.

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Architect George Johnson designs the layout of the village and initial two cottages

1869

Architect and surveyor George Johnson drew inspiration from alms houses in England when he designed the layout of the ‘institution’ for old colonists or ‘inmates’ as the residents were then called. His design included a large hall in the centre, with four semidetached cottages on either side. Each cottage was designed to house two people.

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George Wharton, from Association member to Architect

1870

George Wharton was the Association’s second architect, whose contribution to the village was three bluestone cottages, and the introduction of the verandah. Wharton was active in public life, president of the second Victorian Institute of Architects, and established a Chair and architecture course at the University of Melbourne.

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Judge Robert Pohlman a pivotal player in the early days

1870

On an extremely cold day in May 1870, Judge Robert Pohlman erected a post that defined one of the angles of the Old Colonists’ village in Rushall Park. Two months’ later, and he laid the foundation stone of the first two cottages to be built.

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Foundation Stones laid for the first two cottages

1870

On a rainy afternoon on 1 July 1870, Judge Pohlman, George Coppin and J B Were travelled from Queen Street to North Fitzroy to lay the foundation stones of the first two cottages.  After the ceremony, three hearty cheers were given for Coppin, Pohlman and Mr McKean MLA, who had granted the land.

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Biding by the rules

1870

Behind every successful Association are rules and regulations. The Old Colonists’ was no exception – with a total of 23 rules laid out in its first annual report.

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An ‘Asylum for Decayed Actors’ founded

1871

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.

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Edward Henty becomes Old Colonists Second President

1871

Edward Henty was a man who did not like meetings but was proud of being President of the Old Colonists.

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Louis Lawrence Smith, trustee for the Australian Dramatic and Musical Association

1877

Louis Lawrence was a colourful personality which perhaps was why he was chosen by George Coppin to be one of 12 trustees for the Australian Dramatic and Musical Association.

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The Clarke Cottage is built becoming the fifth cottage in the village

1880

Built in 1880, the Clarke Cottage was endowed by Ernest Clarke in memory of his parents, William and Elizabeth.

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From riches to ruin: Master Mariner G F Goble

1883

Master Mariner G F Goble was singled out as one of four potential residents deserving of ‘special consideration’ to enter the Old Colonists’ Association’s Homes in 1883 by George Coppin.

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Pioneering woman silk grower moves into Rushall Park

1884

Ann Timbrell is not a well-known name today but back in the 1860s she was a pioneering silk grower in Victoria. She fell on hard times after her husband died, and moved into Rushall Park.

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‘Quiet’ philanthropists leave their stamp on Rushall Park

1884

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

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Architect Joseph Crook was a man of many ‘firsts’

1887

Joseph Crook was a man of many firsts. He followed George Wharton as architect for the Old Colonists’, completely changing the layout and look of the village in Fitzroy, he allegedly built the first house in Chapel Street in 1849, and was a member of the party which ‘discovered’ the Eaglehawk goldfields. The party lost their packhorses for three days and were unable to claim the gold.

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Dr Taylor Downie takes over as doctor

1888

Scotsman Dr Taylor Downie became visiting doctor to the Rushall Park village in 1888. He replaced Dr Valentine Browne, the Association’s first honorary medical officer.

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A crowd of over 1,000 flock to the Meadow Party

1890

Over 1,000 Victorians flocked to the Association’s lavish ‘Meadow Party’ for an afternoon of boomerang throwing, Punch and Judy, 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.

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Alfred Felton: a man who believed in spending his wealth on charitable causes

1891

In 1891 four cottages were built in Rushall Park thanks to a donation from Alfred Felton. A highly successful old colonist during the 1880s, Felton was an extraordinary philanthropist who gave to hundreds of causes during his lifetime. His lawyer was the only person who knew the legacy Felton would leave behind.

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Cross dressing Earl of Yarmouth donates to Old Colonists

1895

England’s Earl of Yarmouth was a cross dressing professional stage skirt dancer. He was also a donor to the Old Colonists’ Association.

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First matron Mrs Amelia Wijnbladh

1896

The extraordinary first matron of Rushall Park was Amelia Wijnbladh who found ‘men less trouble than women.’

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A cottage donated for the son of a highway robber

1898

Elizabeth Spencer Wills built The Wills Cottage in Coppin Avenue in memory of her husband, Horatio. Horatio, born in Sydney, was the sixth son of a man transported for highway robbery.

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Carnival held to raise funds for maintenance

1898

Like many other charities of the day, the Old Colonists’ Association was suffering from a lack of funds – not only to build new cottages but to maintain those in its aegis. A Grand National Carnival, including an art union and picturesque exhibition, was organised, and held over seven days in the Exhibition Building starting from 21 May 1898.

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Having a medical was compulsory before coming into the village

1899

From 1899, it became compulsory for all incoming applicants have a medical examination and to be able to live independently.  It was also the medical officer’s duty to examine any residents thought to be no longer able to live on their own and report to Council about the appropriate course of action. Today residents in all estates are free to go to their own doctors.

Caroline Gladstone, performer, seamstress and pianist

1903

Caroline Gladstone was a woman of many attributes: an actor, seamstress and pianists but she never read. According to her, reading ‘wears out the eyes.”

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Fanfare as Sir Reginald Talbot lays foundation stones for two cottages

1906

Bunting flapped, flags flew, and everyone dressed in their best glad rags to welcome the Governor of Victoria Sir Reginald Talbot at the ‘homes’ to lay two foundation stones.

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A theatrical resident

1907

Johnny Riley was one of five ‘needy actors’ living in the Australasian Dramatic and Musical Association homes in Rushall Park

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Dramatic Homes and land transfers to the Old Colonists

1907

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.

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Connecting the cottages to the services

1909

It was slow going compared with the rest of Melbourne but in 1909, cottages in Rushall Park were finally connected to the sewerage scheme. The Council had no choice. Connection had become compulsory.

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Clara Murton, an education pioneer

1909

Clara Murton was a pioneer of education who donated two cottages in Rushall Park in memory of her sister, Emily. She was one of the very few early Victorian colonists who went from patron to resident. She was publicity shy, and little notice was taken of her generosity by the Council.

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Celebrated Melbourne actress Miss Eloise Juno moves into Rushall Park

1910

Celebrated Melbourne actress Eloise Juno must have been a formidable person, not just on the stage but also in her private life.

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Hebden Cottages enshrined

1911

On Saturday November 2, 1911, Sir Thomas A’Beckett, a distant relation of George and Harriet Hebden, using a silver trowel, laid memorial stones for the Hebden cottages.

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A case of mistaken identities

1911

John Birt entertained a lot of people when he was alive. In death, he continued to amuse people – or so others thought.

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Benjamin Barnes engineers his mark on Victoria

1914

Benjamin Barnes, one of Victoria’s earliest engineers, knew what it was like to live in poverty. So much so that he bequeathed 1400 pounds to build a cottage at the Old Colonists’ village in Rushall Park, and 400 pounds to endow it.

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The evolution of a hospital at Rushall Park

1914

There has never been a formal hospital at Rushall Park despite the numerous efforts to create one. There has, however, always been respite care in the village until recently.

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World War 1 largesse by the Association

1915

During World War 1, the Association offered a portion of the Sumner Hospital and three acres of vacant land to the Defence Department as a convalescence home for returned wounded soldiers. The offer was refused.

Gardener William Smith dies aged 106 in Rushall Park

1918

Had William Smith been alive today he would probably have ascribed his longevity to living an outdoors life, and eschewing tobacco and alcohol.

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Protecting OCAV residents from the 1918-19 Influenza epidemic

1918

The worldwide influenza epidemic at the end of World War I was incomprehensibly huge.  Between 20 and 40 million people died worldwide, far more than were killed in combat; some estimates are higher than 50 million. Australia’s casualties were around 12 or 13 thousand.  OCAV took special steps to protect its residents.

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Architect Percy Oakley appointed to design Godfrey cottages

1920

Percy Oakley was a giant in the architectural profession. He was appointed to design the Godfrey Cottages at Rushall Park in 1920. He set up the company Oakley and Parkes on his return from World War I, a firm which won many accolades for their work in Canberra, including designing the Prime Minister’s Lodge, as well as their designs for Melbourne-based Yule House, Anzac House, the cylindrical Brighton Municipal building and the semi-Saracenic Equity Trustees Building.

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Dramatic couple’s legacy knows no bounds

1922

The annual outing to Sorrento by Old Colonists in 1922 was described as a ‘most enjoyable outing’, thanks to the generosity of celebrity acting couple Joseph and Florence Bland Holt.

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Prima Donna Helen Gordon Cunard joins the actors

1925

The tradition of the footlights at the Old Colonists lived on with the arrival of soprano Helen Gordon Cunard in 1925.

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Isabella Love's tale of tragedy

1925

Travel, travail, and tragedy- the story of Isabella Love, neé Ewart, encompasses all these elements in her life.

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Bridegroom becomes a motor-car driver

1929

At the age of 82, Rushall Park resident Alexander McNaughton takes the wheel of a motor-car for the first time with his new bride.

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Pioneering pastoralist Francis Cobbold contributes two cottages

1930

Pioneering pastoralist Francis Edward Cobbold was an adventurous soul. Cobbold and his wife Beatrice endowed two cottages at Rushall Park in memory of Francis’ older sister Mrs Jane Cain.

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Patterson Cottages – major philanthropic fillip

1933

Daniel Harvey Patterson’s will, which dedicated money to build nine cottages in Rushall Park in 1933, is the most substantial donation to elderly Victorians that the Association has enjoyed. Together with the donation by John Hunter Patterson, his brother, to build two cottages in 1925, the Patterson Brothers’ philanthropy was both quiet and important.

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Lucy Coppin, a woman of means, determination and compassion

1934

Lucy Coppin, the daughter of OCAV founder George Coppin, was a formidable woman. There are facts and anecdotes that paint a picture of a woman who successfully carried on many of her father’s endeavours, including the Old Colonists’ Association of Victoria.

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Loyal doctor who went beyond the call of duty

1935

Dr Ewen Downie succeeded his father, Taylor, as Rushall Park’s honorary medical officer. He introduced new initiatives to improve the welfare of the residents, including the system of daily visits, which still exist.

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Down with women

1937

While women were becoming more evident in the committee rooms of charities in Melbourne, a bank of opposition was welling up among the old colonists.

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Sorrento for the day

1938

Residents Mrs Tasman and Mrs Maidment prepare for a pleasant annual Sorrento outing.

Rushall Park Superintendent Richard Weller loved getting his hands dirty

1940

Richard H T Weller was the Secretary/Superintendent of the Old Colonists’ at Rushall Park in North Fitzroy in the 1940s. He had a particular interest in gardens and composting, in fact he was one of the early and prominent members of the Victorian Compost Society, which began in 1945.

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Bunting brings a sense of colour to the opening of the Amelia Smythe Cottage

1940

Rain could not stop play at the opening of Amelia Elizabeth Smythe Cottage in March 1940. Opened by Sir Winston Dugan, accompanied by Lady Dugan, the cottage was adorned with bunting that had been donated by the Fitzroy Council.

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Fuel hardships begin to hit residents

1942

Residents in Rushall Park were among the many living in Melbourne who were hit by the fuel crisis during World War II.  They told The Herald that they had difficulty getting essential supplies. Few of the homes had gas, and many of the residents were using primus or small oil stoves barely big enough to hold one or two saucepans.

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Anne Jeffery lived to the beat of her own drum

1942

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.

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Old Colonists’ compete for garden honours

1943

Rushall Park held its first gardening competition in March 1943. Many of the residents then, as now, were keen gardeners. Mr McKenzie, a spritely 72-year-old, won ‘best garden of all’ which included a display of dahlias.

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Get a Move On campaign heralds Rushall Park as exemplary housing

1948

Decent homes for older people should be a high priority on the State Government housing program urged the Get a Move On campaign, singling out Rushall Park as providing exemplary housing.

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Leith Park – it is all in the name

1949

Leith Park is named after Arthur C Leith who became a Life Governor of OCAV in 1949, and later that year was appoint to the Association’s Council. In 1954, Leith was elected President and remained in that position until 1965.

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Lady Viola Tait, an unsung Life Governor but a soprano in professional life

1952

Lady Viola Tait AC is one of the Association’s unsung Life Governors. A soprano, champion of new and emerging talent, and a theatre historian, she became a Life Governor of the Old Colonists in 1952.

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Alice Wane’s legacy lives

1955

Alice was a nursing Sister at Rushall Park for 14 years from 1955 to 1968 when there was a hospital in the village. Her grand daughter Karen, now 66, shares some of her memories of her grandmother and life in the village half a century ago.

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Henry Liscombe’s bequest helps to purchase land to set up a rest house in the Diamond Valley

1956

Henry Liscombe was an unassuming man but he gave freely of his time as treasurer to the Association over the years. He died in 1942, leaving a bequest to build a rest home.

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Television identity Bert Newton helps promote the Old Colonists’ Rest Home Appeal

1960

Australian television identity Bert Newton has helped many organisations raise money over the years, including the Old Colonists’ when he was a younger and more agile man.

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Ian Rollo Currie – philanthropist whose legacy continues

1962

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.

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The new village of Leith Park is underway

1963

Following a donation from Arthur Leith to purchase land in St Helena, work rapidly began to develop Liscombe House, the rest home and hostel, and 23 independent living cottages. Towards the end of the year, the Association advertising for a matron, nursing sister, cook, maids and a gardener-driver-handyman.

Garry's dream childhood at Rushall Park

1964

Garry Wilson, one of OCAV’s youngest ever residents, had the childhood most kids could only dream after he and his family moved into Rushall Park.

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Pratt Court – a testimony to four generations of support

1968

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’.

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Rushall Park’s kiosk is completed, providing funds for the village

1970

There’s nothing like a good cup of tea and vanilla slice to bring a community together. The kiosk at Rushall Park continues to do a sterling job since it started fifty years ago.

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Bruce Wadeson appointed first manager of Leith Park

1972

Local Diamond Valley man Bruce Wadeson was an obvious choice to become the first manager of Leith Park. He was local and well connected.

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Braeside Park established after land donated to OCAV

1973

The chance for Old Colonists’ Association of Victoria to develop a third village, this time in Berwick, came in 1973.

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Braeside Park Ladies’ Auxiliary starts up to fundraise for the village

1973

The Ladies’ Auxiliary was formed in 1973 to fundraise for Braeside Park. The busy team has held coffee mornings, luncheons, street stalls and many other social events raising money for tree planting and to pay for a visiting nurse to the village.

Leith & Bartlett Architects appointed to design Braeside Park cottages

1974

Leith & Bartlett Architects continued their long-standing relationship with OCAV by being appointed architects to Braeside Park, the Association’s latest village.

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First major appeal launched to build more cottages

1975

Over a hundred years after the start of OCAV, its success – and inflation- had caught up with the Association. With a four-year wait-list for places in its villages, the Association opens a $500,000 appeal to build more cottages.

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Braeside Park becomes home to the Fritzlaff family

1975

Pat Clydesdale has had a bird’s eye view of OCAV’s Braeside Park, almost from its beginning. It was 42 years ago that her widowed mother, Elizabeth Fritzlaff, moved into the sparkling new Unit 2 just a few months after the village opened.

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Extensions continue at Leith Park

1978

Leith Park continues to grow, with nine units built in the Glen area through funding from the Commonwealth Government and donations from known philanthropists like William Buckland, Ian Rollo Currie and George Alexander.

Currie Park established in Euroa

1978

Currie Park in Euroa was the fourth village established by the Old Colonists’ Association of Victoria providing homes for the older citizens in Euroa. It was heralded as a model for other country towns wanting to provide similar services.

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The Sullivans come to Rushall Park

1979

Crawford Productions were given permission to film part of one of the episodes of The Sullivans at Rushall Park. Here a “London Cab” is parked outside 32A Coppin.

Berwick dignatory Cyril Molyneux becomes life governor

1981

Cyril Molyneux lived by the motto ‘endeavour with integrity.’ He was a well respected citizen of Berwick and was involved in many community and arts projects. He became Life Governor in 1981.

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Braeside Park extends as demand grows

1982

As more local people learned about the charming village on Clyde Road, demand grew for its cottages.

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Nine more units built at Leith Park

1985

A further 28 independent living units were added to the Leith Park community, thanks to donations from Life Governor Brian Blythe and his wife, philanthropists Jack Brockhoff and Helen Schutt, and other donors.

$500,000 appeal for nursing home begins

1986

OCAV launches a half a million dollar appeal in 1986 to build a nursing home and emergency accommodation at its Rushall Park village.

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Historic Buildings Register

1986

Rushall Park is considered for inclusion on Victoria’s Historic Buildings Register. It is already listed on the National Estate register.

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Doris Carter and Lois Pitman, both Directors of the Women’s Royal Australian Air Force

1986

Doris Carter moved into Rushall Park in 1986, with Lois Pitman arriving in 1994. Both women were the first and second heads of the WRAAF.  Doris Carter was an Olympic athlete as well as an airwoman.  Lois Pitman served her country and fellow Australians tirelessly. That Rushall Park was their chosen place of retirement was an honour for OCAV.  Lois Pitman left a generous bequest to OCAV.

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Melbourne communist Olga Silver moves to Rushall Park

1993

Rushall Park has been home to many actors over the decades, but it’s also had its share of political activists and veteran Melbourne communist Olga Silver is perhaps one of the better known.

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Demand for Leith Park units continues apace

1994

With a long wait list from older people wanting to come to Leith Park, the Association funds 25 new independent living units in the village. Demand is still high, though.

Meeting place marks 125 years of caring for the community

1994

A plaque to mark the start of building a community room at Currie Park was unveiled during the celebrations to mark the Association’s 125th anniversary.

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Braeside Park opens its new community room

1994

Berwick’s Pipes and Drums heralded the launch of Braeside Park’s new community room, coinciding with the 125th anniversary of the founding of Old Colonists’ Association of Victoria. Long-term Braeside residents Bea Goodman and Violet Facey together with original auxiliary members Madge Dunn, Sylvie O’Donnell and Berwick’s mayor Cr Norma McCausland unveiled the plaque commemorating the occasion.

Currie Park expands to include apartments

1996

As word spread about the ‘model’ village in Euroa, so the interest from older people in the region grew. In 1996, eight apartments were added into the mix – specifically for people no longer able to manage independently.

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Think more and use the phone less

1996

Life Governor Miss Myra Roper AM was a woman ahead of her times, urging young women in 1952 to use the phone less and think more.

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Currie Park service clubs help out in village working bee

1996

Fifty members of the Rotary, Lions and Apex Clubs in Euroa combined on August 11 to landscape the courtyard gardens for the Currie Park apartments. The result was three stunning sunken gardens within the courtyard verandahs. The three clubs agreed they had benefited by the experience, and praised the afternoon tea held after the hard work.

Premier Jeff Kennett drops in for afternoon tea at Currie Park

1997

Victorian Premier Jeff Kennett enjoyed an afternoon tea with residents of the newly completed Currie Park apartments in Euroa. He joined general manager Bob Slade and OCAV President Peter Chester for a guided tour. Mr Kennett said he would ask his Minister for Housing to inspect the unit, as they were superior to any other retirement apartments he had seen.

Open Day at Currie Park brings out the crowds

1997

Sunshine and music drew the people of Euroa and beyond to Currie Park’s Open Day. The formalities included the official opening of the Rotary stream, bridge and gazebo. Shire President Greg Carlson, who cut the yellow ribbon, congratulated OCAV on its work in caring for the elderly.

Currie Park apartments receive national architectural acclaim

1997

Allan Kong Architect made the finals in the Housing Industry Association national award for their Currie Park Apartments.

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Anne Jeffery Wing added to Liscombe House

1998

A new wing, named after Anne Jeffery, a former Association secretary, opens. Anne left a large bequest to the organisation, enabling it to build the much-needed dementia wing at Liscombe House. Her generosity follows in the footsteps of OCAV’s founding families who donated money and left bequests to enable cottages to be built. The Hon Bronwyn Bishop, Minister for Aged Care, opened the wing in February 1999.

Roses for world peace

1999

A new memorial rose garden was established by Greensborough RSL outside Liscombe House. The garden was dedicated to those who have served Australia in war and peace.

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Assisted living apartments open at Braeside Park

1999

Fourteen serviced apartments were constructed in 1999, all clustered around a central garden and close to the communal dining room. Ali Gwyer is one of the residents.

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Residents get a Premier Visit

1999

Victorian Premier Jeff Kennett opens the assisted living apartments at Braeside Park in September 1999. He remarked they reminded him of places he had stayed while on holiday in Queensland. “I was struck by the design,” he said.

Olympian George Knott lines up to carry the Olympic torch

2000

Veteran walker George Knott was a frequent sight around Rushall Park village where he and his wife Judy lived. An Olympian, he trudged the avenues at all hours as part of his preparations to carry the Olympic Torch at Sassafras on its way to Sydney.

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Braeside Park apartments in for architecture awards

2000

The much-acclaimed Berwick apartments were put up for the prestigious annual awards program run by the Victorian Chapter of the Royal Australian Institute of Architects. They received an Award of Merit.

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SEK Hulme Community Centre and apartments open

2013

The $8 million SEK Hulme Community Centre and 26 independent and assisted living apartments are opened at Rushall Park. The community centre quickly becomes the hub of the village. It is named after one of OCAV’s longest serving councillors and vice presidents.

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New look community room at Braeside Park opens

2016

A $130,000 investment to upgrade the communal room has transformed the community spirit at Braeside Park. Local architects Drake Design and builders Rococo Homes were engaged to design and construct the state-of-the-art community room.

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Green light for Rushall Park extension

2016

Plans for a $11.4 million development at the heritage-listed Rushall Park village are given the green light at the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT). The architecture for the new build reflects contemporary style, and fit in with OCAV founding member George Seth Coppin who, almost 150 years ago, said the need for future housing should reflect the housing style of the times.

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Leith Park plans approved

2016

Banyule City Council has given approval to plans to extend Leith Park, our village in St Helena. The $14.9 million investment by the Old Colonists’ Association of Victoria will see an additional 46 state of the art independent living units built into the highly sought after retirement village.

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Victorian Governor becomes Patron of OCAV

2016

The Old Colonists’ Association of Victoria (OCAV) is honoured that Victoria’s first female Governor of Victoria, the Honourable Linda Dessau AC, has agreed to be its Patron.

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Villages to be dementia friendly

2017

OCAV starts work on enabling its four villages to become ‘dementia friendly’ over the next three years.

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OCAV wins major award for kidney dialysis service

2017

OCAV wins a national better practice award for its innovative kidney dialysis service run from Liscombe House during the year. The Australian Aged Care Quality Agency (AACQA) awarded OCAV in recognition of its commitment to continuum of care and support for the late Peter Stock, a kidney dialysis patient, who had to move from independent living within OCAV due to a rapid deterioration of his condition.

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Affordable housing is essential for future age-friendly communities

2017

Affordable housing is key to age-friendly communities, according to four Victorian ageing leaders who spoke at OCAV’s inaugural Conversations for Change. Dr Helen Austin, OCAV resident and former palliative care physician, Dr Owen Donald, Chief Commissioner, Victorian Building Authority, Dr Sue Malta, Senior Researcher at the National Ageing Research Institute and The University of Melbourne and Rob McGauran, Founding Director, MGS Architects led the conversation from a variety of perspectives.  The event was hosted by Phillip Wohlers, CEO of OCAV.

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OCAV retires retirement

2018

Australia’s Age Discrimination Commissioner Dr Kay Patterson congratulate OCAV for ‘retiring retirement’ from its admissions policy. She spoke at an OCAV Conversations for Change on Let’s Retire Retirement.

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Men’s Shed opens at Leith Park

2018

A newly renovated Men’s Shed opens at OCAV’s Leith Park village ensuring men do not have to give up their shed when they move into retirement.

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Euroa’s edible garden springs into action

2018

The John T Reid Charitable Trust edible garden opens at Currie Park. The ceremony is marked by planting out spring vegetables and flowers.

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What's in a name?

2018

Archivist Tony Kelly digitises more than a thousand nomination forms that include the likes of former Prime Minister Alfred Deakin, media founder Keith Murdoch and philanthropist and entrepreneur Alfred Felton.2018

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An unexpected gift from a quiet achiever

2018

OCAV receives a $1 million bequest from the Estate of Jean Margaret Stewart. Jean’s grandmother, Ethel Hooke, lived at Rushall Park many years ago and Jean never forgot the care and friendship Ethel enjoyed at the village.

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OCAV provides value to governments, older people and their families

2018

A Social Return on Investment Evaluation commissioned by the Old Colonist’s Association of Victoria has shown that every dollar invested in the Association creates over $7.41 of value for residents, the community and the Federal and State Governments. The Living Communities Age Well report highlights that an annual investment of $14.7 million by OCAV to provide housing and care creates additional net value of $109 million for residents, the community and governments.

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Governor of Victoria visits Liscombe House

2018

The Governor of Victoria, the Honourable Linda Dessau AC and her husband, Mr Anthony Howard, visited Liscombe House where they learned more about our work and talked with residents about life at OCAV.

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Gardening Australia showcases Rushall Park garden

2018

ABC’s Gardening Australia’s journalist Steven Wells discovers Rushall Park, a hidden gem in Fitzroy North.  View the segment here.

Phillip Wohlers, current Chief Executive Officer of OCAV

2019

Phillip Wohlers joined OCAV in 2000, initially as the General Manager. He is a Certified Practising Accountant with a passion for community development coupled with a vision to provide more affordable housing for elderly Victorians. He is the current CEO.

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Kevin Neville, current President of OCAV

2019

Kevin Neville was appointed to the Council in 1993, and was elected President in 2003. He remains President today. Kevin’s professional career was 30 years as a Chartered Accountant and Partner at Moore Stephens, with seven years as Managing Partner.

OCAV recognised as Victorian/ Tasmanian Organisation of the Year

2019

OCAV is named Victorian/ Tasmanian Organisation of the year in Leading Age Services Australia’s 2019 Excellence in Age Services Awards. The awards are sponsored by HESTA

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Leith Park's new development set to open

2019

Leith Park’s stunning new multi-million dollar development is set to open with one and two bedroom apartments available at the St Helena village.

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OCAV submits to the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety

2019

OCAV calls for changes to aged care funding to drive best practice and to plan better for the future as part of its submission to the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety.

 

Northcote Pottery creates new communal garden at Leith Park

2019

Jane Glynn, receptionist at Liscombe House, has had her dream come true: winning a competition that has seen the creation by Northcote Pottery of a stunning communal garden for residents at Leith Park.

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“I want to give them a hug and say don't worry everything will be alright. I can’t say that, but I can promise that we will provide the best possible care for people living with dementia in our care," said Shaaron Robilliard, Director of Nursing.

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