This blog provides information, stories, links and events relating to and promoting the history of the Wimmera district.
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Friday, 13 December 2013

Styling stations

This post grew from this comment -
"Can someone please elaborate on 'Bealiba style'? I was brought up in Bealiba and spent years hanging around the Bealiba Station but have never heard of the term. Thanks Brian H." on the earlier post ‘Railways - Mildura line’ and led to a little research at the State Library.

The 1870s was an era of railway building, that ended with the financial crash of the early 1890s, when railway lines were extended westward. During this period, the development of a succession of standard plans coincided with the patterns of railway construction, establishing groups of stations common to sections of line.
Bealiba in 1980 (Andrew Ward)

There developed a "line style", in which similarly-designed station buildings imparted their distinctive character along a particular line. The Bealiba station building was one in the “light line” style along one of the “main trunk” lines and gave its name to a prototype style which was an economic solution to the previously costly construction of railway station buildings.

According to Andrew Ward in a ‘Study of Historic Railway Buildings and Structures’ and 'Victoria's Railway Stations: An Architectural Survey', the Bealiba Style is an earlier sub-group of the Rosedale Style. He says the Rosedale style developed in response to the need to save on construction costs,and was the first design to be widely employed for all-timber type buildings. In all, 12 Rosedale style buildings were erected (Cope Cope was the only example in this district) and 6 in the earlier Bealiba Style of station building - Bealiba, Broadmeadows, Euroa, Kilmore East, Lubeck, Murtoa and Wallan.
Lubeck in 1981 (from VRnet)
Constructed in 1878, the Bealiba building is still substantially intact as an example of the style. Elements of the Bealiba Style are: An oblong single-storey plan timber construction with bisecting longitudinal corridor which terminated at a porch. The combined station and residence had a verandah to the platform formed by an extension from the main roof. Four rooms were residential (2 bedrooms, parlour& kitchen) and 2 for railway purposes – the Booking Office and the Ladies Waiting Room. The 4 corner rooms all had fireplaces. The lamp room & toilets were all in the station yard. Copying the diminutive Dooen Style, the barge boards were fringed with cast-iron lace-work, and ornamental brackets adorned the porches. The verandah post capitals, gable vents and finials all had decorative timber work. The interior walls & ceilings, and lamp room & toilets were lined with tongue & groove boards.
Plan of the Bealiba building (Andrew Ward)

The later Rosedale style omitted the cast-iron lace-work, the end porches and 2 fireplaces, but now included a General Waiting Room.

Other stations in the area awarded a “style” are:

·     The "St. Arnaud style" (1879) comprised an architectural symmetrical single-storey hip roofed brick station with cast-iron platform verandah and pavilions and a standard U shaped plan for the station building. It is the most intact example of the largest standard station building design erected on the early light lines.

St Arnaud's water tower

Also the St Arnaud water tower was built as a standard 'Type B2' hemispherical design carried by a 'T' iron frame and installed onto a cement rendered brick column. It is the last remaining example of this construction, with other B2 type towers originally located at Cranbourne, Bealiba and some metropolitan locations.

Diapur station building in 1971 (from "VR stations & stopping places")

·     The “Kaniva Style” which in addition to Kaniva itself, included Diapur, Leeor (to Melton), Miram and Nhill. Small timber buildings with classical decoration & gables.

The ornate platform verandah, Minyip

·     The “Minyip Style” used for Minyip and Yarra Junction.

·     The “Rupanyup Style” used at Rupanyup and Bairnsdale

Past glories - the dilapidated Rupanyup building

A “Special Design” was used for Serviceton, Warracknabeal (1887) was built in the “Casterton Style” a Tudor/Late Victorian look, while Dimboola (1882) is in the “South Melbourne Style” the Italianate/Late Victorian style.

The same style - Donald & Birchip


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