First World War Avenues of Honour in the present (2006) City of Monash
Clayton, Oakleigh, Waverley districts of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

We have an interest in the remaining historic Avenues of Honour that were planted during and after the First World War, beginning as early as May 1916.  These were planted to recognise and honour the local volunteers who served their country overseas.  Hundreds of such Avenues were established by communities throughout Victoria, in other States of Australia and some other Countries, for example Canada.  This web page deals with Avenues in the current City of Monash, which incorporates most of the older municipalities of Clayton, Oakleigh and Waverley.

Eurack Avenue of Honour
The 1916 Avenue of Honour in Eurack, Western Victoria
an example of a magnificent, well maintained Avenue
(Source:  Heritage Council of Victoria)


This summary is a working document which is updated when new  information
is added or older material is corrected or expanded.  If you find 
errors or
 omissions in this document and are able to assist in correcting these

please contact    Alfred Kruijshoop    Thank you
 


1914 - 1918  Avenues of Honour  in the present City of Monash, Victoria, Australia
Extract of General Overview   -   Ongoing Working Document


There were to our knowledge at least five First World War Avenues of Honour in the present City of Monash; three in the old Shire of Mulgrave and two in Oakleigh.
More details on the above are available from the  author of this web site.    In addition to these Avenues in the City of Monash are many other Memorials such as Cenotaphs, Gates and other outdoor Memorials, Honour Boards & Rolls and Memorial Windows (e.g in St Stephen's Anglican Church, Mount Waverley).  However, this overview is concerned primarily with Avenues of Honour.  Two important issues for consideration are  (a)  signage / signposting of Avenues so that they are recognisable and known to the community and  (b)  tracing the names of servicemen associated with the trees.

At present (2006) only one Avenue of Honour is in excellent condition.  This is the (originally 1923) Avenue of Honour complete with servicemen's lists on bronze plaques, refurbished and wholly replanted in recent years, along both sides of the full length of Drummond Street, Oakleigh.  The only other known marker is a single bronze plaque commemorating serviceman F. C. Ross on the north east corner of the junction of Blackburn Road and the Monash Freeway (formerly South Eastern Arterial Road), in Waverley which was possibly from the north end of the 1918 Avenue of Honour in the Centre Riding.  It is of concern that the other Avenues in the City are not  identified in any way by signs or markers.

At present (2006) to the best of my knowledge there is only a good record of servicemen's names for the  Oakleigh Avenue of Honour in Drummond Street.  Inquiries have been made at RSL Headquarters in Collins Street, Melbourne and the Shrine of Remembrance without success.  Michael Taffe (ref:  in sources) has made wider inquiries at the Australian War Memorial, State Libraries, Melbourne University and other "central" organisations.  Avenues of Honour were very much a local initiative by a particular community and records of Avenue plantings and soldiers' names are dispersed in local reports, newspaper articles, local council minutes, programs of unveiling ceremonies, etc. which are often very difficult to locate.  For the Avenues described here (except the one in Drummond Street), I have in mid 2006 carefully walked along and looked at and near the trunk and base of every remaining tree in every Avenue, but have not been able to find any trace of individual markers  as are found in many other Avenues in Australia (except for the F. C. Ross plaque in Waverley).

General References:

"War Memorials in Victoria - a pictorial record",  Researched by Harold Bradley, Bob Christey, Damien Cook, Colwyn Williams, Compiled and designed by Max Parsons, Syd Trigellis-Smith,  published by The Returned & Services League, Victorian Branch, 1994 (ISBN 0 909645 11 6)    This has a photograph of the F. C. Ross Memorial on Page 117.

There is a Victorian State Government   Restoring Community War Memorials Grants Program   to support restoration of Community War Memorials, making available up to $7000 per case for this purpose.  Newspaper articles in 2006 showed this was used for the refurbishing of the Oakleigh RSL Honour Board and for relocating the Oakleigh School (on Warrigal Road) Memorial Gates.  It is part of the State Government 'Department of Victorian Communities' under 'Victorian Veterans'.    

City of Casey:  'Our Living Memorials, Avenues of Honour in the City of Casey', Published by the  City of Casey,  Victoria, November 2001 (ISBN 0 9579886 0 5).   While not about the City of Monash, this is a beautiful example of a book describing seven Avenues of Honour in the region just to the south east of Melbourne.  Copies are available via the City Historical Officer (03 9705 5200), City of Casey, Magid Drive, P.O. Box 1000, Narre Warren, Victoria 3805  and the document can be read at the  History of Casey  web page.
Casey Avenues book

Helen Gobbi:  'Taking its Place: a history of Oakleigh marking its sesquicentenary 1853-2003', Published by the  Oakleigh Historical Society  in 2004 (ISBN 0 9587947 5 8)  with references to the 1923 Avenue of Honour and the 1929 Memorial Drive on pages 167 and 177.
    Page 167 reads (Quote part):  “The last two weeks of August 1923 had been eventful in Drummond Street with the laying of the foundation stone for the Masonic Temple and the dedication of an Avenue of Honour by Major Gen. Sir Thomas Glasgow.   59 Flowering gums were planted and fifty-eight brass plaques recorded the names of Oakleigh service personnel who had died in service.”
    Page 177 reads (Quote part):  “(East Oakleigh) State School No. 4328 opened in January 1929 at Patrick Street …. East Oakleigh State (School) was built from the outset as a double-storey in a neo-classical style; enrolments in its first year stood at 474.  The (East Oakleigh Improvement) League contributed to the planting of eucalypts to form a memorial drive along the entry street …”

Susan Priestley "Cattlemen to Commuters, A History of the Mulgrave District - now the City of Waverley, 1839-1961", Published by John Ferguson, Sydney 1979 (ISBN 0 909134 17 0)
    Page 135 reads (Quote):   “By early 1918 the Council had already begun planning memorials to those who had enlisted. Avenues of Honour, with a tree to represent every soldier, were to be planted in each of the three Ridings.  At Clayton the avenue was planted on either side of the road, near the railway gates.  At Mt. Waverley the trees ran from the top of the cutting on High Street Road past the fruit-growers hall, while at Notting Hill, seventy trees were planted at the junction of May (Blackburn) and Ferntree Gully Roads. The memorial trees were Portugal oaks, chosen because of their long life and freedom from disease. A group of Glen Waverley residents later put up a granite obelisk at the recreation reserve in memory of the seven soldiers from the district who died while on active service.  The visiting federal member and soldier who spoke at the opening of the Mt. Waverley Avenue in July 1918 was Captain S. M. (later Lord) Bruce.”

Information on the whole Shire of Mulgrave and the Clayton area:  a person with very wide knowledge is Mrs. May Keeley, author of the book “A Journey into Yesterday, A History of Clayton", Published by Brownhall Printing, Clayton North 1980 -  ISBN 0 9594752 0 6

Waverley Historical Society "Waverley Past and Present" Published by the   Waverley Historical Society,   Waverley, Victoria 1988 (ISBN 0 9598179 5 6) with a photograph of the 1918 North Riding Avenue on Page 23.

Gerner Consulting Group (Landscape Architects, Planners and Urban Designers) and Andrew Ward (Architectural Historian), For: City of Monash:  'Monash Heritage Study, For Places of Cultural Heritage Significance', Volume 1, February 1999.  For these Avenues see Sheets  8-1,  20-1,  27-1  (Note that each 'Sheet' has multiple pages)

Michael Taffe in Ballarat has done an enormous amount of work on Avenues of Honour in Victoria and wider Australia.  He is listed under University of Melbourne, Faculty of Arts, Cultural Heritage Unit.  He recently published an article about the very earliest Avenues of Honour in Victoria (in  Eurack  and Sassafras in 1916):   "90th Anniversary of our Avenues of Honour"  in the magazine  "Australian Garden History" (published by the Australian Garden History Society), Vol. 17, No. 5, May/June 2006, page 24.

Important Resource:  Janine Haddow: "Avenues of Honour in Victoria", Thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the Degree of Master in Landscape Architecture, School of Environmental Planning, University of Melbourne, 1987.   The full text is available as a PDF file on the Internet from the   University of Melbourne ePrints Repository 
Janine Haddow's Appendix 3  "Avenues of Honour in Victoria"  lists the following "Avenues of Honour" in the old municipalities that are now part of the City of Monash:
Internet web site   War Memorials in Australia    maintained by Michael Southwell-Keely in Canberra, with a wealth of information on many different types of war memorials in all States.
    When using this site, please note that it is a "reference site", a database built up from hundreds of valuable individual contributions by other people all over Australia.  It is a true gold mine of information, but the fact that contributions come from many different authors can sometimes lead to minor discrepancies such as missing details or double entries.  For example two different people may have sent in separate files for the same memorial:   one under the name of the city, another under the name of a suburb.  Or one person may have sent a submission with a list of names and another person sent for the same Memorial one without the names but with a photograph.  Also, in some cases the entries may be incomplete due to memorials having faded over time and plaques becoming difficult to access or read, etc.  Because material on this web site covers all of Australia, it is an impossible task for the coordinator in Canberra to check or address all these problems.  This web site is a very valuable resource locator but it is recommended that the user confirm the information before using it and advise the coordinator if a correction or new material is available.

"Honour Boards" Internet web site, established some years ago by Ken Goudie (Waverley RSL), which can be accessed on his  web site, which can be reached via the  Returned and Services League (Victoria)   web site.  Once here, select  Website Links  >  Records, Medals and Research  >  Honour Boards  to go to   Ken Goudie's (Interim) Honour Boards web site.     



This summary is a working document which is updated when new  information
is added or older material is corrected or expanded.  If you find
errors or
omissions in this document and are able to assist in correcting these

please contact    Alfred Kruijshoop    Thank you