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Soldiers Memorial Institute Military Museum

Attractions Bendigo CBD


Hours: Sunday 10.00 am - 4.00 pm, Monday to Friday 9.30am - 3.00pm (except during Winter June, July, August 11.00 am - 3.00 pm) Closed public holidays. Closed during the Christmas/New Year period.

Phone: (03) 5442-4513

The Soldiers Memorial Institute Military Museum will be undergoing a major redevelopment which requires its closure from 16 September 2016. The plans feature refurbishment of the existing building in consultation with Heritage Victoria and an extension to include a state-of-the-art temporary exhibition space. The Museum will reopen in 2018.

The Museum collection is housed in the Soldiers Memorial Institute in the center of Bendigo. The origins of the building go back to before the end of the Great War. The Memorial was opened by the then Governor, the Earl of Stradbroke on Tuesday 15th November 1921. It was a fitting memorial to the thousands of Bendigo boys who enlisted and to those who made the supreme sacrifice. The Bendigo RSL Sub Branch was granted tenancy from that day on. The massive brass Honor Rolls on the front of the memorial were unveiled by the Federal President of Returned Soldiers and Sailors Imperial League of Australia, Captain Gilbert Dyett (Later to become Sir Gilbert) on Sunday 25th April 1926.

Description

The decision to turn the memorial into a Museum came about after discussions lasting some 18 months with Passchendaele Barracks Military Historical Society whose collection was housed in the old Barracks in Mollison Street Bendigo.

Initially the Museum opened to the public on a trial basis in October 1997 and officially in February 1998. The collection has grown at a steady rate since.

The collection now covers from pre Boer War to Afghanistan including Army, Navy, Air Force, POW's and Women's Services. The material is extensive from medals, uniforms & equipment, firearms, swords and bayonets, trench art, personnel items, diaries, letters and post cards. There are some 80 plus folders containing copies of diaries, photos, letters, post cards and records laid out on tables for visitors to browse. One significant collection is the number of Honor Rolls from old Schools and Churches that have closed down. A major part of the collection revolves around Bendigo's own 38th Battalian AIF which was raised in 1916 for service overseas. Their Battle Honors are a major part of the collection. The Regimental Colours of the 38ths predecessor, the 67th Battalian are also on display. A major boost to the 38th collection was the photos taken by Jack and Bert Grinton which was to become known around Australia as A Camera on the Somme. Their personnel effects from the War are also part of the display.

We also have a large library and volumes of research records. Information is available on researching service records, medals, entitlements and related issues.

The Building and Museum collection are a lasting tribute to the men and women of Australia who served their country.

Entry to the Museum is by; $3 per adult, under 14 free.

Group bookings outside of hours will be determined by available volunteers.

OPENING HOURS: Winter June, July, August 11.00am - 3.00pm Sunday to Friday.

Rest of the year 10.00am - 4.00pm Sunday,

Monday to Friday 9.30am - 3.00pm. Closed public holidays. Closed during the Christmas/New Year period.

37-39 Pall Mall, Bendigo VIC 3550, Australia

Directions

Travelling from Melbourne: along the Calder Fwy, you will arrive in Bendigo at the Alexandra Fountain continue for 100 meters you will find the Soldiers Memorial Museum on your left hand side.