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Truganina Explosives Reserve Preservation Society Inc (TERPS) Altona, Victoria

TERPS is a volunteer group which aims to preserve the industrial heritage of the former Truganina Explosives Reserve, which was the Victorian Government's storage and distribution centre for explosives for civilian use between 1901 and 1962. TERPS holds an extensive archive of artefacts, photos and documents including Public Works Department plans and drawings. While some of the documents are copies from the Public Record Office Victoria and State Library Victoria, very few of the photos are in public collections.

Contact Information

location
10 James Street Williamstown Vic 3016

Contact

Opening Hours

First Sunday of the month (except January), 1.00 to 4.00 pm

Entry Fee

Free

Location

276 Queen Street Altona Victoria

Photographs, reports, drawings, plans and other documents relating to the industrial heritage of the Truganina Explosives Reserve, 1901 - 1962. Also recent photographs showing restoration of the historic buildings.

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13 items

Digitised Oral History – Truganina Explosives Reserve - Tape 10 Hugh Basset

Truganina Explosives Reserve Preservation Society Inc (TERPS), Altona

Digital copy of original cassette recorded in 2000 and digitised in 2018

Historical information

The interviews were recorded in 2000 by Bronwen Gray and Alan Young for the production of Unreserved, Stories from Truganina Explosives Reserve, animated stories from past residents, workers and interested people of the Reserve (subject to copyright 2004). As the then President of the Inner West Branch of the National Trust, Hugh was unaware of the Truganina Explosives Reserve until contacted by Nessie Hardy about the proposed sale of the site by the State Government. He was struck by the industrial, environment and indigenous significance of the site

Significance

A primary source of information on memories of the Truganina Explosives Reserve and Altona,Victoria

Digitised Oral History – Truganina Explosives Reserve - Tape 9 Andrew Shannon and Judy Hindle

Truganina Explosives Reserve Preservation Society Inc (TERPS), Altona

Digital copy of original cassette recorded in 2000 and digitised in 2018

Historical information

The interviews were recorded in 2000 by Bronwen Gray and Alan Young for the production of Unreserved, Stories from Truganina Explosives Reserve, animated stories from past residents, workers and interested people of the Reserve (subject to copyright 2004). Judy Hindle and Andrew Shannon worked jointly on saving the Truganina Explosives Reserve from being sold for development by the State Government. Judy was an Altona resident and Andrew was an environment planner, first with Parks Victoria and then the local council. Their motivation was to not only save the site for open space but to capture what Judy described as the only in-tact historical site in the area.

Significance

A primary source of information on memories of the Truganina Explosives Reserve and Altona,Victoria

Digitised Oral History – Truganina Explosives Reserve - Tape 4 John Gates and Sue King

Truganina Explosives Reserve Preservation Society Inc (TERPS), Altona

Digital copy of original cassette recorded in 2000 and digitised in 2018

Historical information

The interviews were recorded in 2000 by Bronwen Gray and Alan Young for the production of Unreserved, Stories from Truganina Explosives Reserve, animated stories from past residents, workers and interested people of the Reserve (subject to copyright 2004). John Gates began working at the Truganina Explosives Reserve handling explosives at the magazines in 1946. He was appointed assistant manager in 1956. When the site closed in 1962 he was retrained and worked at the Births, Deaths and Marriages offices. In this interview he and his step-daughter, Sue King, talk of life in Altona, life on the Explosives Reserve and some of the people who worked there.

Significance

A primary source of information on memories of the Truganina Explosives Reserve and Altona,Victoria

Digitised Oral History – Truganina Explosives Reserve - Tape 1 Doug and Noel Grant

Truganina Explosives Reserve Preservation Society Inc (TERPS), Altona

Digital copy of original cassette recorded in 2000 and digitised in 2018

Historical information

The interviews were recorded in 2000 by Bronwen Gray and Alan Young for the production of Unreserved, Stories from Truganina Explosives Reserve, animated stories from past residents, workers and interested people of the Reserve (subject to copyright 2004). Doug and Noel Grant’s Grandfather, Don Grant, was officer in charge of Truganina Explosives Reserve from 1910-1930. On his retirement, his son, William (known as Bill) took over the position until 1956. Along with their two older brothers and younger sister, Doug and Noel Grant grew up, first in the assistant manager’s weatherboard cottage and then in the brick house which was set aside for the officer in charge, until they married and moved into their own homes in their early 1920s. On returning from the second world war, Noel Grant worked as a magazine assistant of explosives on the site from 1946, When the site had closed down in 1962 he worked as an inspector of explosives at the Explosives Branch in Melbourne until he retired in 1985. During that time Noel was asked to move back on site, meaning that three generations of Grants have lived on the site during the twentieth century. Doug Grant worked for ICI/Nobel in head office in 1940 and their older brother Alan worked at the Nobel Explosive Company in Deer Park from 1937. After returning from the Second World War, Alan bought a transport business that had once had the licence to cart explosives in and around the state. They discuss their memories of the living at Truganina Explosives Reserve and the workings of the Reserve, including the names of men who worked there, ships which carried the explosives and life in and around Altona.

Significance

A primary source of information on memories of the Truganina Explosives Reserve and Altona,Victoria

Digitised Oral History – Truganina Explosives Reserve - Tape 11 Rob Andrew

Truganina Explosives Reserve Preservation Society Inc (TERPS), Altona

Digital copy of original cassette recorded in 2000 and digitised in 2018

Historical information

The interviews were recorded in 2000 by Bronwen Gray and Alan Young for the production of Unreserved, Stories from Truganina Explosives Reserve, animated stories from past residents, workers and interested people of the Reserve (subject to copyright 2004). Rob Andrew’s career was as an Environmental Health Officer with various councils around Victoria. As an Altona resident he became interested in the Truganina Explosives Reserve when he heard the site was to be sold. He was concerned that because of the prospect of commercial development the community would lose tranquil open parklands. Through his involvement with the Reserve he realised the historical, geomorphic, flora and fauna significance of the site.

Significance

A primary source of information on memories of the Truganina Explosives Reserve and Altona,Victoria

Digitised Oral History – Truganina Explosives Reserve - Tape 2 Joyce Hyde

Truganina Explosives Reserve Preservation Society Inc (TERPS), Altona

Digital copy of original cassette recorded in 2000 and digitised in 2018

Historical information

The interviews were recorded in 2000 by Bronwen Gray and Alan Young for the production of Unreserved, Stories from Truganina Explosives Reserve, animated stories from past residents, workers and interested people of the Reserve (subject to copyright 2004). Joyce Hyde was married to Joe (Lesley) Hyde, the last Officer in Charge of the Truganina Explosives Reserve. They moved into the weather board house on 11 December 1952 when Joe was the assistant manager of the Reserve. They moved into the brick house when Joe was appointed Officer in Charge in 1956. Even though the site closed in 1962 and Joe was transferred to the head office in Spencer Street as Explosives Inspector, the Hyde family continued to live in the brick house. Joyce discusses her life at the Explosives Reserve and the early development of Altona.

Significance

A primary source of information on memories of the Truganina Explosives Reserve and Altona,Victoria

Digitised Oral History – Truganina Explosives Reserve - Tape 6 Alan Dyall

Truganina Explosives Reserve Preservation Society Inc (TERPS), Altona

Digital copy of original cassette recorded in 2000 and digitised in 2018

Historical information

The interviews were recorded in 2000 by Bronwen Gray and Alan Young for the production of Unreserved, Stories from Truganina Explosives Reserve, animated stories from past residents, workers and interested people of the Reserve (subject to copyright 2004). Alan Dyall reminisces on his childhood during the 1930s/40s in Williamstown and Altona in the 1960s. His father, Bill, worked as a lighterman at the Truganina Explosives Reserve.

Significance

A primary source of information on memories of the Truganina Explosives Reserve and Altona,Victoria

Digitised Oral History – Truganina Explosives Reserve - Tape 8 Annette Xibarras and Bill Nicholson Jnr

Truganina Explosives Reserve Preservation Society Inc (TERPS), Altona

Digital copy of original cassette recorded in 2000 and digitised in 2018

Historical information

The interviews were recorded in 2000 by Bronwen Gray and Alan Young for the production of Unreserved, Stories from Truganina Explosives Reserve, animated stories from past residents, workers and interested people of the Reserve (subject to copyright 2004). Annette Xibarras and Bill Nicholson Jnr discuss the indigenous significance of the Truganina Explosives Reserve. At the time of the interview Annette was the manager of the Kulin Nations Cultural Heritage Organisation. Bill, a Wurundjeri Elder, was a Wurundjeri Cultural Officer. They discussed their childhood, aboriginal customs, connection with the land and the locating of aboriginal remains at the Museum of Victoria and the re-burial at the site where they were found.

Significance

A primary source of information on memories of the Truganina Explosives Reserve and Altona,Victoria

1915 Photograph

Truganina Explosives Reserve Preservation Society Inc (TERPS), Altona

Keeper's Residence, circa 1915. Members of the Grant family standing in front of the residence. Keeper Donald (Dan) Grant at left, his wife Alice Matilda Great at right, on verandah.

Digitised Oral History – Truganina Explosives Reserve - Tape 5 Jim Melmoth

Truganina Explosives Reserve Preservation Society Inc (TERPS), Altona

Digital copy of original cassette recorded in 2000 and digitised in 2018

Historical information

The interviews were recorded in 2000 by Bronwen Gray and Alan Young for the production of Unreserved, Stories from Truganina Explosives Reserve, animated stories from past residents, workers and interested people of the Reserve (subject to copyright 2004). Edgar James (Jim) Melmoth began work at the Truganina Explosives Reserve at age 19 (1952) as part of the maintenance crew – painting, tram line maintenance, storm damage clearance. He helped build the pier extension and the water tower. In this interview he describes some incidents and some amusing stories of the clysdale horses.

Significance

A primary source of information on memories of the Truganina Explosives Reserve and Altona,Victoria

Digitised Oral History – Truganina Explosives Reserve - Tape 7 Cliff Gibson

Truganina Explosives Reserve Preservation Society Inc (TERPS), Altona

Historical information

The interviews were recorded in 2000 by Bronwen Gray and Alan Young for the production of Unreserved, Stories from Truganina Explosives Reserve, animated stories from past residents, workers and interested people of the Reserve (subject to copyright 2004). Cliff Gibson, a Williamstown resident, discusses the handling and shipping of explosives in the Port of Melbourne between 1863 to 1962 and the establishment, development and history of Truganina Explosives Reserve. In the interview he mentions the names of the Lighters and Ships used to transport the explosives to and from the Truganina Explosives Reserve.

Significance

A primary source of information on memories of the Truganina Explosives Reserve and Altona,Victoria

Tramway on pier

Truganina Explosives Reserve Preservation Society Inc (TERPS), Altona

Tramway on Explosives Loading Pier. The Clydesdale horse was one of many working at the Reserve.

Digitised Oral History – Truganina Explosives Reserve - Tape 3 Owen Hyde

Truganina Explosives Reserve Preservation Society Inc (TERPS), Altona

Digital copy of original cassette recorded in 2000 and digitised in 2018

Historical information

The interviews were recorded in 2000 by Bronwen Gray and Alan Young for the production of Unreserved, Stories from Truganina Explosives Reserve, animated stories from past residents, workers and interested people of the Reserve (subject to copyright 2004). Owen and Clive Hyde are the sons of Joe and Joyce Hyde. Joe was the last Officer in charge of the Truganina Explosives Reserve. The family moved to the reserve on 11 December 1952 and continued to live there after the Reserve closed in 1962. Owen lived at the house until his early twenties. He discusses growing up at the Reserve. The voice of Joyce Hyde can also be heard during the interview.

Significance

A primary source of information on memories of the Truganina Explosives Reserve and Altona,Victoria