Gringegalgona Soldiers Memorial Hall
2413 Coleraine-Balmoral Road gringegalgona, SOUTHERN GRAMPIANS SHIRE
Statement of Significance
What is Significant?
The Gringegalgona Memorial Hall is located on the west side of the Coleraine-Balmoral Road, just north of the intersection of Gringe Dip Road. The land, comprising one acre,was granted by the CRown to five trustees: John James Smith, Henry Joseph Brody, Alexander John Watt and William Toleman from Gringeglgona and Michael Byrne of Brit Brit. Toleman appears to have given the land. The hall was built in 1925 by these returned soldiers and theirfamilies at a time of great personal hardship. Money was raised by the community, the simple design was prepared by Vine Yuill, a returned soldier, and the builder was a Mr Burgin whose tender was ₤490. The hall is typical of the period, strictly utilitarian in its plan and uses vernacular materials without elaboration. It's use of Ripple Iron as cladding for the walls is distinctive. It has a separate supper room and kitchen at the back. Modern toilets are located to the south and, at some distance, a modern CFA fire engine shed. The complex has been used for a very wide range of community uses over the years. These declined in the 1960s with the advent of better transport and television.The hall is very similar to other nearby examples at Melville Forest and Tarrenlea. It can be compared with many other public halls or different sorts within the Southern Grampians Shire, including some built as memorials after both world Wars. The main hall retains an excellent degree of integrity, is largely intact and is in good to fair condition. The supper room is more altered but is still substantially intact. A plaque mounted on a stone near the Hall lists the names of the returned soldiers who took up land on the blocks subdivided by the Soldier Settlement Board in 1920.
Why is it Significant?
The Gringegalgona Memorial Hall is of historical, architectural and social significance to the Southern Grampians Shire.
How is it Significant?
The Gringegalgona Memorial Hall is of historical significance for marking the conclusion of one of the most important events in the twentieth century and the commemoration of those who fought and died in the First World War. It is of architectural significance for its use of vernacular forms and materials, typical for its period. It is of social significance for representing the efforts of a small community, at a time of great personal hardship, not just to memorialise those who fought and died but to provide a focus for people to enjoy the peace which followed. The hall came to be used for all sorts of local events. It is of social significance for the donation of land by a local family, William Toleman being one of the successful returned soldier settlers .
Gringegalgona Soldiers Memorial Hall - Physical Description 1
The Gringegalgona Memorial Hall complex is in two main parts: the front hall, which includes two rooms at the back under a skillion roof, possibly used as dressing rooms, and a detached shed at the rear used as a supper room and kitchen. There is a simple red brick chimney serving the back rooms. Both buildings are timber framed and clad externally in unpainted corrugated iron. The hall walls are finely corrugated 'Ripple Iron' laid horizontally and the simple gable roof has traditional corrugated iron. There are four standard galvanised iron ventilators in the main roof. The hall is approximately 9.0m by 18.0m and is oriented east-west. The main entrance, in the east elevation, is a pair of ledge and brace timber doors, now faced with sheet metal, with a transom light over. There is a simple louvered timber ventilator in the gable above. A similar pair of double doors is located in the north-west corner of the hall. There are four timber double-hung sashes in the south elevation and three in the north. The only special detailing is an applied timber cross beam (now missing) and king post terminating as a finial in the front gable. From marks in the paintwork, the same detail probably existed on the rear gable. The corners of the building have a timber filet to accept the corrugated iron edges and a timber plinth at the base of the walls. These timber details appear to hardwood and may be locally sourced. All the timber detailing including the joinery is painted white. The floor is elevated on rough hardwood timber stumps approximately 250-400 mm above natural ground with the gap lined by chicken wire.
Internally, the hall is plain with a stage faced with edged boards at the western end, possibly new. The plain walls, now painted a light cream, were lined After World War Two when the floor was replaced. The ceiling of the hall, now painted lilac, is coved but at a shallower angle than the roof possibly suggesting a scissor truss construction. The north-west back room has a semi-circular arch in the red brick chimney breast. Little if any original furniture survives.
The main hall is in sound structural condition with a level ridgeline and no serious settlement apparent around the base of the walls. The main floor appears to be level. The whole building is substantially intact with a high degree of integrity. It suffers from some localised failure in the door and window joinery, and in some of the other timber details. There may be borer in the main floor. The wall iron is slightly uneven and dinted in places, but not seriously so, while the roof iron is lightly and generally rusted. The painted surfaces need to be repainted.
The supper room and kitchen is also timber framed and clad with ordinary vertical corrugated iron. It is approximately 5.0 x 9.0 m. The floor is concrete. The original four-paned windows have been replaced by standard louvres. It is linked to the back of the hall by a covered way. On the south side of the hall and shed there are brick toilets, linked to the hall by a covered walkway, which appear to date from the 1970s. These may have replaced earlier facilities. Further to the south, there is a new standard CFA shed. Some distance from the hall there is a memorial stone with a bronze plaque which lists the original soldier settlers.
Heritage Study and Grading
Southern Grampians - Southern Grampians Shire Heritage Study
Author: Timothy Hubbard P/L, Annabel Neylon
GRINGEGALGONASouthern Grampians Shire H1925
Gringegalgona Soldiers Memorial HallSouthern Grampians Shire
"AMF Officers" ShedMoorabool Shire
"AQUA PROFONDA" SIGN, FITZROY POOLVictorian Heritage Register H1687