Aracde style hits Wodonga | Then and Now

Last year, I told you about the history of the Federal Coach Factory which later became Buntz’s Garage and then Mylon’s Garage.

Giving us a further history of that building I have come across an article in the Wodonga and District Express dated July 1, 1960, announcing:

OPEN: Wodonga’s market brought arcade style shopping to Wodonga. There was over 5000 square feet of shopping space.

OPEN: Wodonga’s market brought arcade style shopping to Wodonga. There was over 5000 square feet of shopping space.

“Wodonga’s New Market Open Today. Arcade Style Shopping.

“Wodonga’s new market will be open as from morning trade today.  Modelled on current overseas open marketing ideas, the new business is similar to the Albury Market in David Street.

“The Manager (Mr Ned Day) said yesterday that shops and stalls were sub-let to tenants for a “co-operative rent” which enabled the market to pass these advantages on to the people in lower prices.

“The building would lend itself to the arcade style which made attractive presentation and would also assist the customer to make quick purchases. 

“There was over 5000 square feet of shopping space.”

Businesses open that day were Gerecke’s with a display of secondhand furniture and fittings, and a poultry mart to open the following Friday. Also Webster’s Fruit and Vegetables.

Mr Ned Day advertised space for a variety of listed business types.

The same newspaper tells of the Officer in Charge at Wodonga Weather Station (Mr Leo Barry) reporting 12 consecutive frosts to date.

Through the magic of Facebook I found Leo’s daughter who told me her father was secretary to the postmaster at Wodonga Post Office at the corner of High and South Streets for over 30 years and provided the weather readings twice a day from apparatus housed in a wooden box standing in the yard of the post office.

This box was louvered downwards thus protected from the weather and contained instruments to read and record high and low temperatures, rainfall figures, wind direction and cloud coverage.  Leo would send a telegram to the Bureau of Meteorology twice daily.

If there was a local event on, for example, the Wodonga Show or Wodonga Races, the committees could take out an insurance policy against inclement weather on the day of their event. 

Therefore accurate rainfall records were required to support any insurance claims that could occur.

The Wodonga Historical Society meets on the first Tuesday of each month (except January) at 2pm in the Wodonga Football Club rooms, Vermont Street, Wodonga. 

Visitors welcome.

Like the Wodonga Historical Society on Facebook.