Sunday, December 12, 2010


We've lived in Mentone for close on thirty years now. When we moved in we were in our 30s and the people across the road were the old folks (as we will be in the next decade) in the street. They made us feel very welcome.
Before they built there, they said the block of land was occupied by an old humpie, a makeshift house that a hermit lived in.
Our street runs off a main thoroughfare of three lanes either way. It also has a service road either side of the highway. I remember as a young fella that this service road was then a dirt track.
At one time the famous Beach Road where 1000s of cyclists train over the weekend was just a dirt, or sand track.
What am I trying to say here - well over the years, there's been a lot of changes in Mentone, some good and some not so good. We've lost a lot of great architecture in the cause of progress. The Mentone Theatre is gone, along with the skating rink. The old station signal box is no more.
We do however have some very nice cafe's, good coffee shops and some specialty food shops now. We had a hardware, timber yard where I purchased many of the renovation materials we needed for our new home. This business lost its customers as the huge Bunnings store moved into the area. It became a gym and now a multi-level complex of shops and apartments is being built. Things change.......

Todays post consists of photos of what Mentone used to look like over the years.

Mentone Post Office - no longer.

Mentone Theatre - no longer.

Mentone railway signal box - no longer.

Mentone Recreational Hall - no longer.

Mentone Skating Rink - no longer.

1951 and the Mentone Theatre is the very large building to the left. We live across the main highway and I can just pick out our house which was built in 1929. The original owners of our house most probably walked across the road to see the greats of the silver screen.

Possibly taken in the 50s, this is Mentone shopping village. The building in the background with the tower was originally the Mentone Coffee Palace, now Kilbreda Ladies College.
I love the old signs on the shops - Barnes honey, Robur tea and further down, the Herald newspaper outside the Mentone newsagency - The Hearald was the afternoon paper with The Sun being the morning newspaper. Both have joined to become one. At the time, Melbourne had three main newspapers, The other two were the Age and the Argus.

The Mentone Hotel is and always has been a unique landmark of our suburb. Several renovations has seen it survive the many Hotels on Beach Road that no longer exist or have been turned into apartments now.

A very early photo of Beach road when it was just a bush track

Mentone Beach 1929, the year our house was built. On the foreshore is the Mentone sea baths and just to the left is the impressive Mentone Hotel.
Wednesday's post - Two days in Paris 


  1. Fantastic photos with I am sure great memories, but it is so sad that most of these buildings have been knocked down for 'progress'. Diane

  2. Beautiful Leon!
    Are you going to stay in your house when you are retired or move somewhere else?

  3. I LOVE the shot of Beach Road.. when it was really a part of the beach (well, almost!). Thanks for sharing and educating Leon :-)

  4. FFL - there's still some hidden treasures to be seen behind high fences, but yes, some majestic buildings have gone.

    Nadege - moving somewhere else is an option we are considering within the next 3 to 4 years but possibly still in the same area. I admire the people that of read about in blogs that have retired in a new country.

    Hi there Lawrence - pleased to pass on some history anytime. See you at the track soon?

  5. Thank you so much for sharing! I accidentally ended up in Mentone which had been somewhere I knew little about, but instantly knew I would be here to stay. These photo's are fantastic, but such a pity so many landmarks are gone.


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