Guiding in Ballarat
Guiding was introduced to Australia in 1910 and grew in popularity after the war. Lady Stradbroke, wife of the State Governor, was appointed as the first Victorian State Commission in 1922, creating a centralised administration body.
In July of 1922, a meeting was held in the room of the Mayoress, Mrs Pittard, at the Ballarat City Hall. The outcome was the formation of the first Ballarat Local Association. Mrs Maxwell-Gumbleton, wife of the Ballarat’s Anglican Bishop was elected as president, with medical practitioner Dr Florence Cooper appointed as the Commissioner.
Originally, the encouraging force behind the foundation of the Girl Guide movement in Ballarat was from local schools, and later from the churches. Ballarat’s first unit in 1922 was the 1st Ballarat (Queens Church of England Girl Grammar School) Guide Company. This was followed in the same year with the formation of the 2nd Ballarat (High School) and 3rd Ballarat (St Andrews) Guide companies.
The 4th Ballarat (All Saints) Company was formed in 1924, captained by Mary Mills, a teacher at Queens.
It was in this very first year that some of Ballarat Guiding’s most well-known names were first introduced, including:
- Norma Clark - an original member of the Queen’s Company who later dedicated her life to Guiding
- Lilian Ling - one of the earliest District Captains at the High School unit
- Mona Montgomery - Commissioner of 2nd Ballarat and Queen’s staff member
In these early days, Guiding was considered "fairly innovative and a potentially radical development".
According to Janice Croggin (author of "After lunch we practiced our stalking") Guiding was perceived as challenging the traditional roles, and moulding the hearts and minds of girls in new and often revolutionary ways. Yet the emphasis was still strongly focused on feminine accomplishments such as physical exercises, roller bandaging, drill work, ambulance work, horseshoe formation for enrolment with colours and morse code signalling. Girls worked towards the following badges : cook, cyclist, music lover, laundress, milliner, domestic service, homemaker, health, clerk, writer, motorist and photographer.
1st Ballarat Guide Company (Queen's Church of England Girls' Grammar School). Closed 1926.
2nd Ballarat Guide Company (High School) - Lillian Ling.
3rd Ballarat Guide Company (St Andrews)
4th Ballarat Guide Company (All Saints Church of England) - Mary Mills
Moved to Skipton Street Uniting Church in 1935
5th Ballarat Guide Company (Pleasant St Methodist Church) - Miss Mackie
Creswick Company (Pleasant St Methodist Church)
St Peter's Brownie Pack - Norma Clark. Closed 1933.
6th Ballarat Guide Company (Baptist Church)
7th Ballarat Guide Company (St Peter's Church) - Mona Montgomery
8th Ballarat Guide Company (Domestic Arts School) - Mona Montgomery
9th Ballarat Guide Company (St John's Church)
10th Ballarat Guide Company (Scot's Church, Lydiard St) - Jean Murdoch ?
11th Ballarat Guide Company (orphanage)
Ballarat Ranger Company (St Peter's Church) - Dorothy Roediger
Brownie Pack (Burnbank Street State School)
Extension Guides - Norma Clark
Extension Ranger - Normal Clark
Scots Church Ranger Patrol - Lillian Ling
1A Ballarat Company
6th Ballarat Guide Company (Dawson St Congregational Church)
Unit closed in the late 1960s
12 Ballarat Brownie Pack (St Cuthbert's)
1st Ballarat Rangers - reformed - Mrs Macaulay
1st Ballarat Trefoil Guild - President Mrs Burns, Treasurer Norma Clark
2nd Ballarat Trefoil Guild (Ballarat Base Hospital) - Sister Grace Cameron. Recess 1972. Reopened 1980 as 2nd Ballarat Trefoil Guild - Nance Llewwllyn
1st Sebastopol Girl Guides - Carmel Welsh Church Hall
1st Sebastopol Brownie Pack
Sea Rangers - Ethel Lloyd (known as SRS Canberra, then later SRS Ballarat
Waminda Trefoil Guild (3rd Ballarat) - Jean Ince (camp name = Waminda)
4th Ballarat Brownie Pack
2nd Ballarat Brownie Pack
1st Delacombe Brownie Pack (now Delacombe Junior Guides) - Wilma Douglas
South Star Ranger Unit - Lynda Spicer, Janine Barclay and Sandra Ballard
1st Buninyong Gumnut Guide Unit - Jenny Colvin
Choc Chic Ranger Guides - Barkly Street Uniting Church hall
Ruff Diamond Trefoil Guild - Julie-Anne Evans
Delacombe Girl Guides
Guiding Star Girl Guides
1st Alfredton Girl Guides
1st Alfredton Brownie Guides (Eureka Begonia Guides)
Link to Queen Elizabeth II
In the period between 1945 and 1970, Guiding made a gradual swing away from the British-centred, monarch-oriented movement to a more Australian identity. However the link between the Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has always been respected, reflected in the editorial of the programme for her coronation:
"This Coronation of 1953 is a specially important and historic one for the Guides of the British Commonwealth because the Queen herself is a member of the sisterhood of Guiding. For this reason every Brownie, Guide, Ranger and Guider will feel that she has a share in this most important and impressive ceremony.
Districts and Divisions
Ballarat District separated
In 1958, the Ballarat District (which was the largest in Victoria) was divided into three districts: Ballarat, Eureka and Wendouree. The Sebastopol District was soon to be established, and later, Buninyong.
Grampians Region formed (subsequently separated)
In 2013, Guides Victoria reorganised the Guiding regions and districts in the state. The above districts were incorporated into the Ballarat District, members of the Grampians Region.
Central Highlands Region
As part of a 2018 restructure, the Grampians Region was divided into 2 smaller regions aligned with local government areas.
Ballarat District was assigned to the Central Highlands Region which encompasses many local Guiding Districts:
- Ararat District
- Ballarat District
- Golden Plains District
- Hepburn District
- Moorabool District
- Pyrnees District
We have unit meetings for various ages in Ballarat Central, Brown Hill, Soldiers Hill, Sebastopol and Buninyong.
Current Units in Ballarat
- Ballarat Central / Alfredton
- Ballarat South / Sebastopol
- Brown Hill / Soldiers Hill
11th Ballarat Girl Guides (10-14)
1st Sebastopol Guides (10+)
Venue: Sebastopol 7:00-8:30
Contact: Dawn – 53359258
4th Ballarat Guides (5-15)
Ages: 5-15 year olds
Day: Thursdays 6:15-7:45
Venue: Ballarat South
Contact: Julie-Anne – 0419517331
Alfredton Girl Guides (10-17)
Ages: 10-17 year olds
Contact: Louisa – 5334 1975 or 0409 707 372 (after 7:00pm)
Ballarat Begonia Junior Girl Guides (6-11)
Contact: Elizabeth – 0417525700
Ballarat Olaves (18-29)
Ages: 18-29 year olds
Catch ups: monthly
Venue: as organised
Contact: Vanessa – 0467 864 947
Choc Chic Ranger Guides (13-18)
Ages: 13-18 year olds
Venue: Soldiers Hill
Contact: Karen – firstname.lastname@example.org
Delacombe Junior Girl Guides (prep-grade 4)
Ages: 5-10 year olds
Day: Thursdays 5:30-7:00
Contact: Cherie – 53355097
Eureka Butterfly Guides (5-10)
Ages: 5-10 year olds
Venue: Brown Hill
Contact: Makealah – 0478180644