Yallourn Power Station: then and now

Another week, another “then and now” blog post from me. Following on from last week’s look at the power stations of the Latrobe Valley, here is a comparison of the facilities at Yallourn.

First off is a photo from December 1947, showing both office and operational staff heading out of the main gate at knock off time. In the background is the original power station at Yallourn, with an array of short chimneys belching coal dust into the air, in the days when filtration devices were extremely primitive.

Fast forward 60 years, we are at the same location but the scene is very different. The power station was decommissioned in 1989 and was listed on the Victorian Heritage Register in 1994, but due to the amount of asbestos inside it was demolished between 1997 and 1999. All that remains on the site today is the concrete foundations, a gatehouse to nowhere, and the former administration building.

Old SECV offices at Yallourn Power Station

This 1961 photo shows the extent of the original complex at its peak (you can find the full sized version here), with the main gate being to the middle right: before demolition the power station had consisted of five separate units: ‘C’, ‘B’, ‘A’, ‘D’ and ‘E’.

Yallourn Power Station, 1969
Photo via Yallourn Association

As for the administration building, it was built in 1922 in the inter-war Academic Classical style, the two storey “Yallourn Production Centre” building features a portico with giant order Ionic columns, and was designed by the SECV architectural department under the direction of chief architect AR La Gersch. With privatisation of the power station the building was sold in 1996 and is now used as a pub, with the building being listed on the Victorian Heritage Register.

Yallourn Production Centre, the old SECV offices beside the Yallourn Power Station

Further reading

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5 Responses to “Yallourn Power Station: then and now”

  1. Breadon says:

    My family arrived in 1952. my father worked in building the cooling towers. I have search for our name Victor George Breadon I cannot find it.
    we lived at the top of the hill straight up from the front gate. My brother and I attended the primary school. we left Australia in 1954 and went back to Scotland.
    appreciate any help

  2. […] site was chosen due to easy access to water from the Latrobe River and electricity from the Yallourn power station, with full production commencing in […]

  3. […] imported fuel became untenable, so the State Electricity Commission of Victoria was established to exploit the brown coal reserves of the Latrobe Valley for base load power […]

    • Graham Peters says:

      A good write up, but one minor correction. The picture of the power station circa 1961 shows all five stations, which at that time were all operational. from left of image, C,B,A,D,E. A station was demolished in about 1968 and B station in the 1970s.

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