Malmsbury residents prepare celebrate hall’s 150th anniversary

Malmsbury Town Hall. Picture: GOOGLE
Malmsbury Town Hall. Picture: GOOGLE

Malmsbury’s town hall will celebrate its 150th anniversary in August with residents look back on the building’s history.

The hall’s managing committee has been planning the night for months and hopes to see it at capacity to mark the occasion.

Committee member Sue Love said the hall is the central focus for Malmsbury and still used quite frequently.

“It is a fairly significant looking building and adjacent to the botanic gardens, which makes it a beautiful spot,” Ms Long said. “Going back 150 years, the hall was used on many occasions for all sorts of celebrations.”

“It hosts Anzac Day events each year and held six weddings last year. It becomes a blank canvas and is affordable for couples.” 

The original proposal for the Malmsbury Town Hall was for the building to function as a mechanics institute – something that never eventuated.

Plans were drawn up in mid-1867 – a period when Malmsbury was prospering – and the stone work was commenced by local stonemason John Jones. On June 3, 1868, the hall was opened with a ball and supper.

Ms Love said the committee hopes to re-create the night the hall was opened with a brass band opening the event, students re-enacting historic events and a family bush dance all planned for the celebrations.

“We have such a big day planned. We want it to be a true celebration of the hall’s history,” she said.

“We found old records (for re-enactments) and are trying to replicate that night with a dance and food.”

Ms Love said Malmsbury is still a popular day-trip destination.

“We’re not far from Melbourne or Bendigo. Since the freeway took the truck traffic out of town, it is much more relaxed and (travellers) can pull off the freeway to go to the bakery or coffee shops,” she said.

Malmsbury Town Hallls 150th anniversary celebration is on Saturday, August 4, from 4pm to 8pm.

Entry is a gold-coin donation with drinks at bar prices. Patrons are asked to bring a plate to share.