Centenary of Benjeroop Public HallPrint Page Print this page


Photographs supplied by Graeme Saunders

The plaque commemorates the centenary of the public hall 

There was more than one reminder of the resilience of the Benjeroop community at the township's Public Hall centenary celebrations on Easter Sunday. A tree in memory of former resident Gail Troy, a new pioneer memorial fence plus a plaque unveiling all contributed to bringing days gone by back to life.

Grant Angus - whose grandfather, Henry Angus, presided over the opening of the original hall in 1912 - told Sunday's audience that the hall facility continued to play an important role in the community. "Seeing it's such a historic occasion..." Grant said, and his opening set the tone for the rest of the afternoon.

As early as the 1880s there was discussion between the local pioneers as to the placement of a suitable public hall - to be made out of either wood or bricks on the highest land point available in the area. That idea became reality when Henry Angus opened the original hall on September 20, 1912. Visitors came from Mystic Park, Murrabit, Lake Charm and Kerang for the hall opening.

The first evening's worth of entertainment at the hall included piano performances, a solo whistler and a bagpipe player among other things. Shortly afterward, a horse race meeting was held next to the hall, with a temporary grandstand built for the occasion. The first hall was later moved to a farming property shed and a second one was built.

Henry Angus was a former Kerang Shire Councillor and council president. Henry was recalled as a jovial, busy and generous man - and in the same spirit Grant played on his eight-decade connection with the township to good effect in his speech on Sunday. "My elder brother Harry was president of the Benjeroop Hall Committee in the 1940s," Grant said. "I am pleased that his son lives at Swan Hill and that my niece Janet Hamill lives at Lake Boga, so the Angus family connection remains in this area after 133 years."

As one audience member called out in response to that bit of information - wherever former locals live, they are just considered to be suburbs of Benjeroop. And with that, Grant signed off.

"I'm very proud to still be associated with Benjeroop," he said, before turning his attention to the plaque. "Are your cameras ready?"

As Benjeroop Hall Committee president Lindsay Schultz put it, not even last year's floods could damage the current hall. "We fought the [water] off, it never got wet," he said of the current hall site, constructed in 1958. Recent improvements to the building have included step rails at the front and back and solar panels on the roof. It is still, in Mr Schultz's eyes, an example of what can be done by a town that has virtually no residents. "Here you are with a handful of people and you've got a beautiful hall," he said. "There's not many left in Benjeroop - but what is left is dedicated."
Ganawarra Times, 9 June 2012.


Address:Benjeroop - Lake Charm Road, Benjeroop Public Hall , Benjeroop, 3579
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -35.485497
Long: 143.826597
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:Culture
Approx. Event Start Date:1912
Approx. Event End Date:2012


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Sunday 8th April, 2012
Front Inscription

                       1912 - 2012

One Acre Of Land Allotment 13, Section 2,
Was Reserved In Benjeroop For
The Public Hall On 18th June 1888

The Original Benjeroop Public Hall
          Was Built In 1912

The Current Benjeroop Public Hall
        Was Erected In 1958

Benjeroop Public Hall Committee
                  April 2012

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