Axedale Community Farewell Popular Head Teacher 1914

From: The Bendigonian, Tuesday 22 December 1914

16th December.
A farewell social was tendered to Mr. T. F. Bissett in the Presbyterian Church last night on the occasion of his leaving the district. A large number attended, including a few invited guests, to pay their respects. Mr. J. Hamilton presided in the regrettable absence of Rev. Thompson, through illness. Mr. Hamilton, in a few introductory remarks, regretted the departure of the guest, and was supported by Messrs. Mill, Deane, Brewster, Drake and Millington, who fully endorsed all that the chairman had said. Mr. V. Deane, on behalf of the congregation, then presented the guest with a heavy pair of gold cuff links, with initials inscribed. Mr. Bissett feelingly:responded, and stated the gift would serve as a connecting link between him and his Axedale friends. Musical honors were accorded. Mr. Bissett has acted as organist to the church for the past seven and a half years, and his services will be much missed. Mr. J. Hamilton favored with a song in fine style. Excellent Patho selections were given by Mr. Deane. Thanks were accorded the ladies by Mr. Bissett for the repast, which was tastefully provided. A most enjoyable evening closed with singing the National Anthem and “Auld Lang Syne.”. Mrs. Taylor and Mrs. Hamilton carried out arrangements creditably.
18th December.
A very large gathering of parents and friends met in the newly erected shelter shed at the local State school, to say goodbye to Mr. Thomas Bisset, head teacher, who has been connected with the school for the past 10 years. Refreshments were provided by the ladies. The children were first attended to, and afterwards the adults sat down to tempting eatables neatly arranged on small tables. Cr. S. Doak, who presided, spoke at some length on the many good qualities of Mr. Bisset, and the great interest he took in the education of the children; also the training of the children in connection with school concerts, which enabled the school comittee to erect such a fine shelter shed : Mr. Bisset has done his part in inducing the Government to remodel the school, owing to the increase in attendance, which ‘is due to the teaching ability of
Mr. Bisset. Mr. Doak’s remarks were supported by all the gentlemen present, who expressed regret at Mr. Bisset’s departure from Axedale. The chairman then presented Mr. Bisset with a beautiful solid leather dressing case, bearing the following inscription:-‘ To T. F. Bisset, H.T., from parents and friends, Axedale State School, 1008, 17/12/14..” Master Thomas O’Neill then read an address on behalf of the scholars. Miss Daisy Earl handed Mr. Bisset a gold sovereign case with his initials engraved thereon. Mr. Bisset made a feeling response, thanking the parents and friends for the very nice present, and also the children for their gift. He referred at some length to his connection with the school, and expressed much pleasure with the manners and work of the scholars. He would cherish greatly the gifts he had received. A vote of thanks to the ladies, and “Auld Lang Syne” brought a pleasant afternoon to a close. The presents, which were greatly admired, were purchased from the stock of Messrs. Prescott and Dawe, Mitchell Street, Bendigo.

OUR COUNTRY SERVICE. (1914, December 22). Bendigonian (Bendigo, Vic. : 1914 – 1918), p. 11 (Morning). Retrieved December 8, 2020, from

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Axedale Antics December 2020

This is the first three pages of the Axedale Antics, December edition. To read the entire issue, just click here The Axedale Antics is published monthly. There is no January edition due to the summer holidays.

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St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church Axedale 1904

From: Bendigo Advertiser, Monday 4 July 1905, page 5

A pleasant evening was spent in the Axedale Presbyterian Church on Wednesday evening, the occasion being, (writes our correspondent), a farewell social and presentation to Mr. and Mrs. E.A. Whitelock.

Owing to the inclemancy of the weather the attendance was not so good as it would otherwise have been, and the vocalists who had volunteered their services were unable to attend for the same reason. The musical program that had been arranged had to be abandoned, but it speaks volumes for the popularity of the guests that on such a wild night a goodly number of friends and well wishers assembled to say goodbye.

The Rev. T. Ray was appointed chairman. A few items were rendered by the local quartet party. Parlor games were indulged in, and just before coffee and refreshments were announced, Mr. Ray presented Mr. Whitelock with a handsome entree dish on behalf of the members of the church, and in doing so referred in eulogistic terms to the many sterling qualities of that gentleman.

Mr. Whitelock has filled the post of organist to the church during the four years of his stay here, with credit to himself and satisfaction to the members and adherents, and he always took a lively interest in all matters connected with the church and Sunday School. Mr. Whitelock has been appointed to the State School at Ellenbank, near Warragul, and leaves Axedale this week.

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Axedale Ploughing Match 1879

From: The Bendigo Advertiser, 31 July 1879, page 3

The Axedale annual ploughing match was held yesterday at Mr. M. Boyle’s paddock, about a mile and a half from the Perseverance Hotel, Axe Creek, or thirteen miles from Sandhurst. The weather being exceedingly propitious for the day’s outing, a fair proportion of visitors attended the match from Sandhurst, including Mr. D. C. Sterry, the Mayor of the city, but the general attendance was not very large, and chiefly consisted of the farmers and their families, from the immediate neighborhood, who, however, appeared to take a lively interest in the match, and displayed great concern as to the result.

The convincing ground, which is rather prettily situated on the banks of the Axe Creek, was, although perhaps not the best that might have been choson, on account of the circumstance, that when the paddock was ploughed last, the furrows were cut very deep and run crosswise, was fairly suitable for the purposes of the match.

Notwithstanding tho slight disadvantages mentioned, however, the competitors appeared to be quite satisfied, and the work done was, as a general rule, of an excellent character. The committee, which consisted of Messrs. T. Donnellan, T. O’Rourke, D. Mills, J. Burke, A. Whitlock, J. White, W. S. Cahill, W. Cuthbert, R. O’Brien, J. W. Bywater, T. Craike, J. Martin, J, Harris, and J. O’Loughlin, deserve every credit for the interest they took in getting up the match, which it was at one period feared would have fallen through, and Mr. H. F. Dodd, the secretary, who was untiring in his energies in collecting subscriptions, ably backed up the committee in their efforts, which proved an unqualified suc-cess, and must be highly gratifying to these gentlemen. The judges were Messrs. J. D. Bywater, J. Patten, and F. Poynting, who performed their duties admirably.

The booth on the ground for the supply of comforts for the inner man was conducted by Mr. Drake, of the Campaspe Hotel, Axedale, who also catered for the committee, and served up a very good cold luncheon. As usual on such occasions some of the card sharping fraternity were in attendance, but business with them was apparently any thing but brisk.

Of the ploughing nothing but praise can be written, and on the whole, for its general excellence, the competitors in each class are to be highly complimented, the judges in some cases finding it exceedingly difficult to discriminate as to the merits of the work done by different competitors.

In Class C. (boys) the work was considerably beyond mediocrity, and it compared in a very favorable manner with the ploughing in the senior classes. The youngsters, however, had some advantage over the competitors in the adult classes, as the ground allotted to them was the pick of the field, that upon which the others operated being of a crumbly nature which rendered it hard to show off a crown to advantage, and the want of some rain to bind it together hotter, militated considerably against the appearance of tho work in the senior classes.

In Class A, the champion class, there were only four competitors, and the first prize was awarded to A. Mills, of Axedale, who used a plough of Lennon’s make, The chief points in Mills’ work were the neatness of his furrows and the excellence of his crown and finish.

The taker of the second prize, A. McKinley, of Redesdale, who used a Gardiner plough, did remarkably good work; his finish, however, was somewhat faulty, a point which greatly influenced the opinion of the judges, but his crown was so wall finished that he was awarded first prize for it as being the best of the whole.

The third prize was awarded to T. Mofiitt, of Axedale, who handled a plough of McVey’s make. His crown also was very good and the furrows were very straight and well packed.

In class B there were twelve competitors, the first prize being given to J. McGachey, of Bagshot, who used a Lennon plough. The furrows were exceedingly neat, although the ridges were perhaps a little narrow, but they were well packed, and the crown and finish being excellent the judges were fully warranted in giving him first prize.

The second prize was given to J. Slattery, of Leichardt, with a Leslie plough, who did good work, and the third to A. Wallis, of Marong, also with a plough belonging to the same maker.

The prize for the best finish in this class was given to J. McGachey, In class C, or the boys’ class, the work was of a really excellent character, and reflected great credit on the youthful competitors, among whom were several boys under fifteen years of age.

Out of eight who competed,, Wm. Wallis, of Marong, with a Leslie plough, was awarded the first prize, with W. Lyons, also of Marong, with the same make of plough, gaining second prize, and M. White, of Axedale, with a McVey plough, being awarded third honors. The work done by each of the competitors being of a first class description.

Annexed is the result of the competition:-

lass A.—1st prize, £5; {2nd, £3; 3rd, set of swingle trees, valued £1 1Os., presented by Mr. Cuthbert. Open to all, except those whom the committee shall consider as professionals. Entry, 7s. 6d.
A. Mills, Axedale (Lennon) … 1
A. M’Kenly, Redesdale (Gardiner) … … 2 .
Mofitt, Axedale (M’Vey) … … … 3
P. O’Sullivan, Wagamba, (Lennon) 0

Class B.—1st prize, £4; 2nd, £2; 3rd, set of plough back bands, valued 17s. 6d., presented by Mr. Probts, saddler, Clare Inn; 4th, pair of swingle trees, presented by Mr. M’Vey. No ploughman allowed to plough in this class who has ever won a 1st or 2nd prize in class A, or 1st prize in class B. Entry, 5s.

J. M’Gachey, Bagshot (Lennou) … … 1
John Slattery, Leichardt (Leslie) … … 2
A. Wallis, Marong (Leslie) ….3
J. Conroy, Axedale (Henderson) … … 4
T. White, Axedale (Cockburn) ….0
W. O’Loughlin, Sweeney Creek (Lennon) … 0
J. Martin, Axedale (M’Callum and Gade) … 0
M. Donnellan, Axedale (M’Vey) ….0
H. Ryan, Axedale (M’Vey) ….0
J. J. Sullivan, Wagamba (Lennon) ….0
A. Wirth, Axedale (M’Vey) … 0
M. Fitzpatrick, Axedale (Lennon) … … 0

lass C.—For youths not exceeding 17 years of age. 1st prize, £3; 2nd, £2; 3rd, pair of elastic-side boots, value £1 Is., presented by Mr. Whitlock. Entry, 2s. 6d.

W. Wallis, Marong (Leslie) … … … 1
W. Lyons, Marong (Leslie) ….2
M. White, Axedale (M’Vey) ….3
M. Hawkins, Axedale (Lennon) ….0
M. Quin, Axedale (Lennon) ….0
J. Harris, Axedale (Lennon) ….0
J. Whitlock, Axedale (Lennon ….0
J. Lynch, Axedale (Lennon) … 0

For the best crown, Wallis secured first prize and for the best finish,
J. Whitlock was awarded first honors. Besides the prizes above stated, several others, consisting of articles of clothing, were given, which allowed each competitor to have a prize. After the judges had given their decisions, the assemblage dispersed, although a good many left the ground before that time, as it was nearly dark before the results were made known, and some of the visitors had to travel long distances over bush roads.

It was remarked that the committee would have acted wisely if they had appointed more judges, or allowed the competitors in the champion class to judge the work in Class C., which would have been the means of facilitating the judging.

In the evening a ball was held at Drakes Campaspe Hotel, Axedale, which concluded the annual contest. In a pecuniary sense the match was so successful that after all prizes and expenses are paid, a surplus will remain, to go towards next year’s match, at which it is proposed to offer a silver cup, valued at £10 10s., to be competed for in Class A.

*Please note Punctuation and paragraphs have been added to the above transcription for ease and speed of reading

“AXEDALE PLOUGHING MATCH.” Bendigo Advertiser (Vic. : 1855 – 1918) 31 July 1879: 3. Web. 2 Nov 2020 <;.

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Axedale Burial: James Lynch 1903

Axedale Catholic Cemetery
James Lynch

The Bendigo Independent, Saturday 28 March 1903

The obsequies of the late Mr. James Lynch took place at the Axedale Cemetery yesterday.-The cortege consisted of about 100 vehicles, and amongst those present were Crs. Burns and Burke, Messrs. J. Harrington, J. Ryan, J. Brown, T. Clarke, Hawkins, O’Dwyer, Barry, Slattery, Code, and Mr J. Davies. The chief mourners were Messrs. J., T., W., and James Lynch,sons of the deceased Mr, D. Graham son-in-law, and Mr. D.Downey, nephew. The pall-bearers were Messrs. White (2) and Donnellon (2). The service at the grave was conducted by the Rev. Father. Rooney, Mossrs. Fizelle and Mulqueen carried out the mortuary arrangements.

Margaret Lynch

Advocate (Melbourne)
Saturday 17 December 1910
LYNCH—At Axedale, on the 9th of December, Margaret Lynch (maiden name Donnollon), wife of the late James Lynch, Sugar Loaf, Campaspe, aged 80 years, native of County Clare, Ireland, a colonist of 66 years standing, and mother of Michael, John, Patrick, James, Thomas, the late Mrs. W. Downey, late Mrs. J. Brown, Mrs. M’Carthy, and Mrs R.Graham. R.I.P. —Inserted by her loving granddaughter, Nellie Downey.

sacred to the memory
james Lynch
died march 25th 1903
aged 75 years
and his wife
died december 8th 1910
aged 79 years
also their daughter
margaret brown

“ABOUT PEOPLE.” The Bendigo Independent (Vic. : 1891 – 1918) 28 March 1903: 4. Web. 25 Oct 2020 <;.

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Axedale News 1894

From: The Bendigo Advertiser, Friday 9 November 1894, Page 3

(From Our Correspondents)
MATRIMONIAL – Today Miss Mary Caby, of this place, was married to Mr. McGuinn, of Drouin Gippsland. The ceremony, performed by Father Hogan, assisted by Father Kearns, was witnessed by a large gathering. The bride was handsomely attired in a pearl grey dress of croquette cloth with butterfly bonnet to match, and carried a lovely bouquet of stephenotia and ornamental grasses, and was attended by Misses Drake and McGuinn as bridesmaids. Miss Drake was attired in heliotrope crepon, picture hat, bouquet of cloth of gold roses and ornamental grasses; Miss McGuinn, pink nun’s veiling, white lace hat to match, bouquet pink roses. The costumes were made by Miss Anderson of Scott Bros. At the breakfast, provided by Mrs. Drake, a large number of guests were entertained. The health of the newly married pair was proposed by Father Hogan in a speech in which humor and sentiment were suitably blended. The bridegroom suitably responded. Mr. and Mrs. McGuinn left by the evening train for their honeymoon amid a shower of rice and rose leaves.
ON HOLIDAY: The lovely weather tempted a large number of Bendigo folks to picnic on the picturesque banks of the Campaspe. The annual Presbyterian Sunday School picnic also took place on the racecourse, and was well attended. The parents and friends had made ample preparations, and games, races (for which handsome prizes were given) and a tea, described by one of the boys as “a dream of luxury”, helped the children to pass a thoroughly happy day. Prominent among the managers were Mesdames Stachan, Doak and Cahill, Misses Doak, Cahill, Paton and Ingham. Messrs. Cox and Paton were in charge of the racing.
FUNERAL: The remains of Thomas Burke, 15 years of age, the son of Mr. Thomas Burke, of Forest Creek, were conveyed to their last resting place, the Axedale Cemetery, this afternoon. The death, which was dreadfully sudden, was the result of rheumatism of the heart. The great respect shown by the large number of mourners, the funeral cortege being one of the longest ever seen here. the burial service was read by Father Kearns of Heathcote.

TOUR COUNTRY SERVICE. (1894, November 9). Bendigo Advertiser (Vic. : 1855 – 1918), p. 3. Retrieved October 5, 2020, from

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Axedale Burial Devlin 1918



From: The Bendigonian 05 September, 1918, page 21

DEVLIN. — The funeral of Mrs. Elizabeth Devlin, wife of Mr. Matthew Devlin, took place on Monday at the Axedale Cemeterv, leaving the residence of her son-in-law, Constable P. Dwyer, Axedale, and being very largely attended. Many floral tributes were received. Deceased was a native of Yea, and leaves a widower and one daughter. The coffin bearers were Messrs. E. Drake, P. O’Donnell, M. Howley and J. Ryan, and the pall bearers Messrs. W. Hawkins, W. Mannus, N. Deane, C. Hayes, E. Crowe, and C. Curthier. The Rev. Father Brady officiated at the grave and Fizelle and Mulqueen carried out the funeral arrangements.


From: The Bendigo Independant, Thursday 08 February 1917, page 4

DEVLIN.— On the 7th February, at the residence of her brother-in-law Constable P. Dwyer, Axedale, Florence Victoria (May) Devlin, daughter of Mathew and Elizabeth Devlin, 97 Scotchmere street, North Fitzroy; sister of Mrs. P. Dwyer (Cis.), and the late Leslie Devlin.

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This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is img_2686.jpg

DIED 1.9.1918
DIED 7.2.1917

Family Notices (1917, February 8). The Bendigo Independent (Vic. : 1891 – 1918), p. 4. Retrieved October 7, 2020, from

OBITUARY. (1918, September 5). Bendigonian (Bendigo, Vic. : 1914 – 1918), p. 21. Retrieved October 7, 2020, from

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About AOTOF – Axedale Our Town Our Future

Local community group Axedale Our Town – Our Future, known as AOTOF, was formed in 2007, with the purpose of putting together a local community plan. Since this group formed, there has been much work done by the committee and members, to make improvements to Axedale, and also to the lives of the people in the community of Axedale and surrounds.

The committee of AOTOF have developed a community plan, which was a collaboration with the local community and the City of Greater Bendigo. When this plan was put into place, it was intended that everything on the plan would be enacted by the end of 2022. Covid-19 has caused the plan to be slightly behind where expected, but it is still a work in progress.

The AOTOF committee is sectioned into portfolios, with committee members, choosing the portfolio that is of interest to them. The portfolios are as follows”

* Community Portfolio
* Community Resilience Portfolio
* Events Portfolio
* Communications Portfolio

As a result of the Axedale Community Plan, many events, both informative and fun, now appear regularly on the local calendar. Axedale is now a vibrant community, due to the hard work done by committed locals.

Community members are always welcome to attend and contribute to AOTOF meetings. At the moment, however, due to Covid-19, the meetings are held virtually. If you are interested in attending, leave me a comment and I will ensure you have the necessary information.


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