In 1977, artist Annette Meikle undertook a commission to illustrate a book recording stories of places and people in the Bayside area. It was published in 1978 as Sandringham Sketchbook, with text by Elizabeth Waters. The sketches were intended to record remaining examples of Bayside’s early architecture and environment, as well as reflect newer architectural changes. Meikle went on to donate 22 of these sketches to Bayside City Council in 2003.
Semco Park was a model of exemplary modern business in the 1920s. Located on Cheltenham Road, Black Rock, then considered to be an outer suburb, the property was home to Semco, a manufacturing and importing business of paper
goods and cotton fabric items.
The business’s governing director, Charles Mylius, wanted a firm that treated staff with fairness, created healthy and spacious working sites and offered recreational facilities. The site contained a factory as well as three houses for staff, a park with lawns, trees and flowerbeds, a cricket oval and a canteen serving hot food. Staff enjoyed soft background music played in the factory, and benefited from a superannuation scheme.
Semco Park was sold to developers in 1977 but the business continued until the early 1990s with the office moving to Mulgrave, while factory work shifted to New Zealand.
Annette Meikle, Semco Park 1977, ink and watercolour, 25.8 x 35.7 cm. Bayside City Council Art and Heritage Collection. Donated by the artist, 2003
annette meikle, sandringham sketchbook, elizabeth waters, semco park, semco, cheltenham road, black rock