Thursday, June 12, 2014

Australian Opening of the First Parliament Dias Steps Exhibition Building to Ascot Vale 1901

The Dias Steps At The Opening Of First Australian Parliament

Opening Of First Parliament Dias Steps In Use In Ascot Vale
These dais steps were used at the opening of the First Commonwealth Parliament of Australia at the Exhibition Building, Carlton, on 9 May 1901. They led up to the official podium, upon which the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and York and the Earl and Countess of Hopetoun stood. The steps have traces of brown paint on them, but for the opening of the first Parliament, they were covered in carpet.

Federation First Parliament Opening Steps Being Removed From Ascot Vale House
After the opening, the steps were souvenired by the carpenter who built the dais and steps for the opening of Federal Parliament, John Westwood. He installed them at the rear of his home in Ascot Vale. In 1936 this house was sold to the Camp family; in contrast to their original purpose, the re-located steps became the Camp children's main entrance into the house. A visit to the Camp family by John Westwood's grandson brought the original use of the steps to light, so when the house was sold by the Camp family in the late 1990s, the steps were removed and donated to Museum Victoria.
Opening of First Parliament Dias Steps now with Museum Victoria

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