As the Yarra became unsuitable as a source of water, several attempts were made to find alternative sources for the growing population of Melbourne. It was not until 1891 that the efforts to sewer Melbourne came to fruition with the setting up of the Melbourne Metropolitan Board of Works (MMBW), now known as Melbourne Water. From 1891 until 1992, it was the responsibility of the MMBW to safeguard public health by providing a sewerage system and a safe water supply system. In 1992, The MMBW merged with a number of smaller urban water authorities to form Melbourne Water.
The Australian Cerebral Palsy Association ran the Miss Australia Quest and had various titles such as Miss Queensland and Miss Victoria. One branch of the Victorian state competition was the Miss Victorian Government Service Quest. Terri Cott was one of the MMBW’s most popular representatives in the running for the title of Miss Victorian Government Service Quest in 1977. At the time, 18 year old Terri was an Administrative Officer in the Accounts Payable Department and had been with the Board for a year. Terri was crowned as the winner for Miss Victorian Government Service as she was the second highest money raiser with $17,337.72. This also won her a holiday on Brampton Island. Terri was up against 12 other women from other state Government Departments.
This staff newsletter highlights the historically significant achievement of Miss Terri Cott being one of the most popular representatives in the running for the title of Miss Victorian Government Service Quest in 1977. This captured achievement not only focuses on Terri's external beauty, but demonstrates her charitable efforts. This newsletter article has historic and social associations with the many women's rights movements in the 1970s. In particular, it relates to the number of challenges the Miss Australia Quest experienced with feminist and activist groups threatening the future of the competition, which forced organisers to examine the appropriateness of the Quest.