Kyneton RSL History Timeline
April 19, 1918
Kyneton Sub-branch of Vic RSL formed at a meeting held in the Temperance Hall
President Dr. H G Loghran, Secretary Mr H Smith, Treasurer Mr H Deards
April 28, 1918
Parade held in Gardens
June 8, 1918
Public appeal opened for RSL funds – 34 pounds donated
Signing of the ‘Armistice’ – town bells pealed and processions held, continued for six days.
July 16, 1918
Branch to be non-political and non-sectarian
August 22, 1918
Decided to purchase the building next to ice works in Mollison Street, dance held in Drill Hall to raise funds.
December 21, 1918
Newly purchased Club rooms opened by Major Adams from Bendigo – procession on horseback set forth down Mollison Street led by town band.
August 24, 1920
No objection to ‘Mechanics Reserve Memorial’. Designs called for A Stewart, L Thompson now complete, Mr W L Jones commissioned to do work. To be 27 feet high, 60 tons of stone, unveiled 6 years later by Lord Somers the Governor of Victoria.
August 8, 1924 until July 6, 1929 – did not function
President Mr Dave Reid, Secretary Rev R S Wigley
May 4, 1931
Women’s Auxillary formed – President Mrs Downing, Secretary Mrs Nutall. In 1933 the south room of the ‘Mechanics Institute’ was leased as the Club rooms.
WW11 a number of members enlisted for garrison duties.
Formation of Home Guard directed by the RSL, it had established our ‘ambulance service’ later taken over by Bendigo.
Plans made for erection of Club rooms.
RSL took over Kyneton Athletic Carnival and for 7 years raised money for the new Club rooms, when a property on Mollison and Donnithorne became available it was purchased and for several years meetings were held in the house on the property.
March 28, 1953
The RSL Building Fund was formed.
Opportunity to build the present Club rooms and opened by Sir Dallas Brooks the Governor of Victoria.
The Club rooms were situated at 174 Mollison Street, Kyneton.
Visitors are always most welcome at the Kyneton RSL so come and join us where friendliness is not a thing of the past.
Kyneton Mounted Rifles
The country Victorian town of Kyneton has had a long history of military involvement. As early as 1859, enthusiastic support for a Mounted Rifles troop was shown when 33 local citizens paraded at Barkly Square to be inspected by Captain Scott, the Melbourne-based adjutant of the Victorian Mounted Rifles. After drill they adjourned to the Royal George Hotel to elect officers, an indication of the democratic process that was synonymous with the volunteer movement in those days. One year later the newly constructed Mechanics Hall was the scene for the formalities of enlistment and sanction of Government.
At about this time other country towns in the near vicinity formed their own troops and all eventually trained together – strongholds for volunteer enlistment were at Malmsbury, Castlemaine, Maryborough, Maldon and Sandhurst (which became Bendigo). Unit names and uniforms were varied and replicated those of England at a time when the Mother Country was embroiled in disputes in the Crimea, Afghanistan, India (Mutiny) and New Zealand (Maori Wars).
The Castlemaine troops chose to call themselves dragoons; and other units became lancers, cavalry, light horse and yeomanry. It was inevitable for the economy of scale that these would all join together, and thus the detachments of Kyneton Light Horse and Kyneton Infantry Rifles came into being. These became part of the amalgamated Victorian Volunteer Light Horse and Victorian Volunteer Rifle Corps, but this changed once again when the Governor of Victoria Sir Henry Barkly approached the young Prince of Wales for permission to name all the Victorian volunteer regiments after him. Following his approval, the newly created units came under the umbrella of the Prince of Wales Light Horse, which was later to serve Australia with considerable courage and enterprise in the years following Federation.
The Kyneton RSL has an extensive collection of military memorabilia covering Australia’s military history.
Memorabilia is on display at the branch (other memorabilia is in the process of being catalogued and recorded onto the Museums Australia catalogue) and will be on display on a rotational basis.
The collection includes medals, documents, diaries, weapons, photographs, albums, firearms, uniforms, personal equipment, including a Canon out the front of the RSL.
Much of the collection has been donated to the RSL, and we are grateful to receive any item for display for future generations.
The RSL is a proud equal opportunity organisation with the highest ethical standards in all things we do. Our people will behave with honest and integrity whilst treating others with respect and dignity. We will listen and reach out to our members to ensure they have the opportunity to contribute positively to the values and services of our organisation.
Annual General Meetings are held usually in March each year. All elections for the committee positions are conducted by post. Only Service and Affiliate members can vote.