Footscray

A peek inside The Grand Theatre, Footscray

A few weeks ago I walked past the exterior of the old Grand Theatre in Paisley Street and wondered what it looked like inside. Thanks to a reader, Cr Nam Quach, I was introduced to the owner, Footscray businessman Peter Ki, who kindly allowed me inside for a look around and to take some photographs. Continue reading

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James Flood’s exclusive limousines

We head west, the Whitten Oval at our backs, and walk along Sunshine Road into West Footscray. The name Sunshine Road suggests a rustic fairytale, but the reality is industrial – a railway track on one side, factories, old mills and warehouses on the other.

I like this kind of landscape, especially when you come across old painted signage like this, visible from Stradbrooke St, which reads ‘James Flood Pty Ltd’ in cursive script. Though defaced by tags, it’s a beautiful piece of work. I had never heard of James Flood. But in his day, his cars broke speed records, raced aeroplanes. Now that Australian car making is all but dead, it’s worth remembering him.

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Slugs and fonts at the Museum of Printing

Meet Michael Isaachsen, director of the Melbourne Museum of Printing. This unusual museum is a personal collection of printing machines, typefaces, equipment and artefacts, only a tiny fraction of which is on public display at the current premises, 266 Geelong Road Footscray.

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“So fine a place of entertainment” – the lost theatres of Footscray

fiesta_bingo

On the face of it, the Fiesta Bingo Hall in Paisley Street, Footscray is a depressing, semi-derelict edifice, with various small businesses desperately trying to make a go of it at ground floor level. The upper part of the exterior is ruined – the Fiesta Bingo signage seems to get worse every time you look, with bits regularly falling off.

But walk around the back and you find something amazing. Continue reading