Charles James (Jimmy) MelrosePrint Page Print this page

15-May-2016 (Bryan Cole)
15-May-2016 (Bryan Cole)

Photographs supplied by Nigel Daw / Bryan Cole

The monument, which was originally erected as a memorial fountain, commemorates aviator Charles James (Jimmy) Melrose. Recent renovations to the memorial include a metal etching on top of the memorial and the removal of the drinking fountain. 

Jimmy Melrose who was the youngest competitor in the 1934 MacRobertson London-Melbourne air race and the only Australian to finish. Melrose made the record solo flight from Australia to England in 8 days and 9 hours and came third on handicap.

In July 1936, he was flying during poor weather and crashed in Melton South in which he and his passenger were killed. He died when his Heston Phoenix VH-AJM broke up in mid air.

The James Melrose memorial fountain was handed over to the District Council of Stirling on Monday evening, by Mr. F. Chardon and the secretary (Mr. W. A. Paterson. junr.) The memorial which stands at the northern corner of the Stirling Centenary Oval is a very fine and useful addition to an already splendid oval. It was erected by public subscription in memory of the late James Melrose, who was at one time a resident of this district. The memorial cost £101 to erect and of this amount £22 was raised by the children of the following schools.—Stirling East, £1 13/1; Bridgewater, £4 2/10; Aldgate, £2 11/11; Mylor, £1 15/; Scotts Creek, £1 17/1; Heathfield, £2 16/3; Upper Sturt, £1 5/S; Crafers, £5 10/11. Owing to the infantile paralysis epidemic an official unveiling ceremony was regarded as unwise, and Messrs. Chardon and Paterson, on behalf of the committee, handed the memorial over to the care and control of the Council.   The structure was designed and the construction supervised by Mr. J. C. Irwin.

Mr. Chardon in outlining the work done in connection with the memorial, mentioned the great part played by the children in gaining the memorial. The late James Melrose was always the children's idol, he said. Mr. Paterson in giving details of the cast etc., mentioned that there was a credit balance of £7, which the committee asked the council to set aside for maintenance of the memorial.  The chairman of the Stirling Council (Mr. W. Nicholls) in accepting the memorial, said he felt extremely honoured that the district had been selected as a site for a memorial to a very gallant aviator and he was also pleased to learn that the children of the district schools had made such a remarkable response to the appeal. The committee responsible for the erection of the memorial were.—Mr. Alex. Downer (chairman) and W. A. Paterson, junr.; (secretary and treasurer) Mesdames Guy Fisher and Frank Irwin, Messrs. F. Chardon, C. S. Watson and M. F. Moran. 
Mount Barker Courier and Onkaparinga and Gumeracha Advertiser (SA), 10 March 1938. 


Address:Mount Barker Road, Stirling Oval, Stirling, 5152
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -35.007071
Long: 138.718712
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Monument
Monument Theme:People
Monument Designer:Mr. C. J. Irwin


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Monday 7th March, 1938
Front Inscription



Plaque : 

Dedicated To The Treasured Memory Of

Born 13 September 1913. Resident of Adelaide Hills.
Died 5 July 1936 from an aircraft accident at Melton, Victoria.

As Australia’s youngest air ace he held six Australi­an
and international aviation records. The only solo pilot to
complete 1934 Centenary Air Race England to Aus­tralia.

Awarded 1935 Jubilee Silver Medal by
H.M. King George V for multiple flying deeds
his name ranks with the all-time greatest of Australian fliers.

"They shall mount up with wings as eagles" Isaiah 40:31

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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