Settling for the finest

From a booklet recently donated by Elaine Mann, entitled Wodonga, which could be bought for 3/-, we have a snap shot of the town in 1964.

There were 101 retail stores, seven banks, eleven garages, five licensed hotels, four motels, several public halls and a drive-in theatre.

“Most of the old houses taking up valuable space in the shopping centre have disappeared”.

The population of Wodonga Shire was 10,850.

The regular festival on New Year’s Eve had been transferred from Martin Park to the main street which was blocked off from the shire hall to the water tower for several hours. There were street stalls, variety acts, dancing, bands, parades, contests, music and fun.

The Shire rate was 7½d in the £, the water rate 2½d in the £ and the sewerage rate 10d in the £, all based on the unimproved value system which was based on the site valuation rather than the value of building improvements.

For visitor accommodation, apart from the hotels and motels there were three caravan parks.  Carriers Arms Hotel Motel had four double motel units complete with own shower and toilet, six hotel rooms and plans for 10 additional single units.

Wodonga had been awarded 1st place for Industrial Development, 2nd place for Town Planning, Development and Beautification in Victoria Premier Town Contest for 1961-64 period.

“Within 20 miles of Wodonga there are 51,400 people to provide the district’s work force.  This is supplemented from time to time with the thousands of migrants who come to Bonegilla Migrant Centre before being posted where employment is available.  The migrants have brought news skills to this country and thousands of them have chosen to settle down and build homes in Wodonga.”

“It has been truly claimed by those who have travelled the length and breadth of Australia that Wodonga is situated in the centre of the finest 1000 square miles of the Commonwealth.”

“Wodonga invites you to look around Australian at will, but assures you that there is no finer place to live, to tour or to set up a new industry or business than right here in Wodonga.”