Historic honour rolls listing the names of service personnel from Toongabbie will be restored and returned to their original home, thanks to the efforts of local volunteers and funding from the Federal Government.
The Nationals Member for Gippsland Darren Chester has announced $4595 to relocate and restore the rolls.
“The honour rolls were originally installed at the Toongabbie Mechanics Institute hall, but
currently hang in the stadium,” Mr Chester said.
“The rolls were moved more than 30 years ago when the hall fell into disrepair.
“The honour rolls’ timber work will be carefully cleaned to maintain the patina and some of the names will need re-lettering.”
Toongabbie Reserves Committee President Graham Berrett said the Mechanics Institute, which dates back to the late 1800s, had now been restored, paving the way for the rolls to return.
“We think it’s time for the honour rolls to be re-hung in their original home at the Mechanics Institute,” Mr Berrett said. “We want war memorabilia from our local area to be located in the one place.
“We are organising a community celebration to held on Sunday, October 21, at the Toongabbie Mechanics Institute to mark the Centenary of Armistice and the return of the rolls.
“The men whose names appear on the rolls would have known the Mechanics Institute Hall as an important focus for locals. We want to return the men’s names to their rightful place in our community.”
Funding for the restoration of the rolls and the community celebration has been provided by the Federal Government through the Armistice Centenary Grants Program.
Mr Chester, who is the Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Centenary of ANZAC, said the Toongabbie committee was one of the first local organisations to receive funding.
“This grants program is designed to support local projects and activities that appropriately mark 100 years since the end of the Great War,” Mr Chester said.
Under the program, every electorate in Australia is eligible to receive up to $50,000 to commemorate Australia’s wartime history and the 100th anniversary of the Armistice.