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Victorian Archives Centre public opening hours

Monday to Friday: 10:00 am to 4:30 pm
(excl. public holidays)
The second and last Saturday of every month

We will be closing the Reading Room at 1:00pm on Fri 19 Dec, reopening Mon 22nd at 10:00 am

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Dams, Pipes and Sewers


Werribee Farm

Yan Yean Reservoir

As the City of Melbourne boomed and grew, many of the services we now consider essential to good health and wellbeing were unavailable.

As with many other emerging nineteenth-century cities, Melbourne had no reliable and abundant supply of fresh water to meet the thirst of its expanding population and industry. Likewise, there were no pipes layed in the ground to carry the water around and make it available at the places where it was needed. If you wanted water, you had to go where the water was. The disposal of human waste was rudimentary, leading to foul smells and disease. The sewerage system that we take for granted today had to be built from scratch.

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