Through childhood eyes: hidden stories of World War Two

2020 marked the 75th anniversary of the end of World War Two. We commemorated this significant anniversary through local living memories that document how World War Two impacted young people in our City.

The stories

Listen to stories that explore what life was like growing up in the City of Port Phillip during the tumultuous years of World War Two.

Melbourne, 1945, convalescing sailors listening to the radio at RAN convalescent home 'Orwell', Robe Street, St Kilda. 122514 Australian War Memorial

The people

Read personal experiences of sixteen residents and former residents of the City of Port Phillip and what their childhood was like growing up during the war years.

Tom Connors and his daughter, 1945

World War Two sites of significance

Explore places in the City of Port Phillip that have a significant connection to World War Two.

Prince Of Wales Hotel, Fitzroy Street, St. Kilda., Rose Stereograph Co., c1920-1954, State Library of Victoria. H32492/8169

World War Two significant dates

A timeline of key dates and events.

V-E Day and Armistice Celebrations, Melbourne, Victoria, Argus, 1945, State Library of Victoria. H99.206/3084

Remembrance Day

This year our Remembrance Day event was held online on Sunday 8 November 2020. You can watch the recording of the event here to remember and reflect on our community’s service and to mark the 75th anniversary of the end of World War Two.

Remembrance Garden, Walter Reserve, cnr. Station and Raglan Streets, Port Melbourne

Acknowledgements and credits

Through Childhood Eyes: hidden stories of World War Two is supported by the Victorian Government through the 75th anniversary of the end of World War Two Grants Program.

We would like to thank all of the voluntary participants in this project.

Supported by the Victorian State Government

Thank you to all the individuals who so generously shared their stories and experiences of growing up in the Cities of Port Melbourne, South Melbourne and St Kilda during the war years:

  • Thelma Aimers
  • Marlene Bailey
  • Mary Baldie
  • Joan Boyd
  • Amelia Dukes
  • Thelma Edgar
  • Margaret Ewing
  • Terry Keenan
  • Elva Kiely
  • Paul Lynch
  • Reg Macey
  • Barbara Patterson
  • Janet Revill
  • Kay Rowan
  • Judy Thomson
  • Pat Zangiacomi.

These stories were brought to life by the talented young people of Middle Park Primary School and Albert Park Secondary College:

  • Tristan Carr
  • River Collis
  • Felix Cornwall
  • Ayla Dury
  • Charlie Fortunaso McKay
  • Scarlet Grieve
  • Lily Hall
  • Yasmin Jenkins
  • Chloe Kaskani
  • Georgia Kaskani
  • Matilda Lester
  • Fox McMaster
  • Holiday Ott
  • Freddie Stevens
  • Miller Stevens
  • Ella Strangward.

These stories and soundscape were written and curated by Way Back When Consulting Historians with sound design by Russell Goldsmith.

This project is part of the City of Port Phillip’s World War Two commemoration program. We thank our volunteer committee:

  • Janet Bolitho
  • John Briggs
  • Jennifer Bryce
  • Adair Bunnett OAM
  • Meyer Eidelson
  • Lambis Englezos AM
  • Graham Lockwood OAM
  • Gary March
  • John May
  • John Stirling
  • Ian Tanner
  • Maureen Walker.

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