Morven SS 3826

12 miles from Digby, South_West Victoria



Morven was an Estate divided for Closer Settlement in 1911. It is approximately 10 miles SE of Merino and the nearest Sate Schools were:

  • Branxholme SS No 1978 6 miles
  • Condah SS No 1019 8 miles
  • Hotspur SS No 1260 12 miles
  • Tahara SS No 1378 11 miles
  • Digby SS No 2047 12 miles

Morven is situated approximately 10 miles SE of Merino. The Morven Estate was sub-divided for settlement in 1911. There were twenty-five farms and 25-30 children requiring education. Three weeks before the Christmas holidays in 1913, Mary MOORE took charge of a school housed in an old dwelling in a paddock still known as DUNNs' Paddock. Attendances dwindled and the school closed on 3rd of December 1916 but several new families arrived and, on 3rd of March 1921, Miss BURGEN, with 16 children, established another school, this time in the old shearers' quarters at Morven homestead. Later, the school operated part-time with Hotspur and in 1930 attendance fell to 5 and the school closed. In 1945, with 8 school-age children in the area Miss V. SPRIGG was appointed to re-open Morven school. This time the building was a vacant dwelling belonging to EDWARDS. The third school closed in December 1947 because of low attendance, the teacher being Miss S. McDOWELL. farms in the area have been consolidated into large holdings. Parents of the few school-age children transport them long distances by car to the primary school at Branxholme or to meet buses running to secondary schools in Hamilton.

Source: "Vision & Realisation", Vol 2, Education Department of Victoria.


Names of children who would attend MORVEN SS NO 3826 if school was re-opened 11.8.1920.

  • Alma Ethel Grey 17.6.13
  • Methyl Irene Grey 16.9.16
  • Clive Storer 15.9.07
  • Amelia Storer 17.6.06
  • John H Storer 11.6.12
  • Janet Turner 17.6.13
  • Irene F Addinsall 16.9.10
  • Malcolm McIntosh 10.10.06
  • Murray McIntosh 10.4.09
  • Norman Judkins 13.6.07
  • Isa Ellen Judkins 24.8.14
  • John Allardice 5.8.15

In addition to the above the following children under four years of age reside on the Morven Settlement

  • William Young
  • Robert Young
  • Gladys Storer
  • Edith Turner
  • Inez Grey
  • A Judkins

The records show that there were also 4 children in the Moon family who should have been on the roll for this school, but whose father disagreed with the site chosen for the new school and so moved his children to Branxholme.

  • Moon Alice Ida 23.10.06
  • Moon James Leslie 14.9.08
  • Moon Harold 19.7.10
  • Moon Doris Marjorie 13.10.14

Names of children in attendance at MORVEN SS NO 3826 as at 31.12.27 giving:
Name, age on Jan 1st 1928, date of birth.

  • Nancy Burgess 12 yrs 9 mths 19.3.13
  • Nellie Burgess 9 yrs 1 mth 2.11.18
  • Edith Turner 10 yrs 5 mths 28.7.17
  • Methyl Grey 11yrs 3 mths 16.9.16
  • Violet Grey 8 yrs 19 mths 5.3.19
  • Gladys Storer 8 yrs 2 mths 2.10.19

Distances and directions of parents' residences by road, distance from Branxholme school.

  • Mr P Turner 4 chns 6 miles west
  • Mr NJ Burgess 1 mile south 5 miles west
  • Mr JC Storer 2 miles south-east 4 miles west
  • Mr G Grey 2 miles east 4 miles north-west

Children likely to attend in the future with ages and distances

  • Lucy Grey 4 yrs 10 mths 2 miles
  • Athol Grey 4 yrs 10 mths Do

Article supplied by Beryl O'Gorman; email - beryl@wordweavers.net.


Peter Turner, Morven Homestead
I was interested to read the list of pupils at the above school which includes my mother and aunt. (Turners) My grandfather, Peter Turner of Morven homestead, helped establish the school (being the second of three Morven schools) and offered a cottage rent and maintenance free with firewood and horse stabling. He also put a new gate in one of the paddocks so some of the children could take a short cut to school. Even though it was a lot closer than Branxholme for the pupils to travel to, it was still a hard slog for some of them to get there. Numbers were always precariously low but they managed to keep the school open until 1930. Mum wrote a very brief outline of the history of the schools a few years ago.

Mary Bone

MORVEN SCHOOL

Morven is situated seven miles west of Branxholme, eight miles from Condah and eight miles east of Hotspur. The first Morven school operated in a building in Dunn's Paddock between 1913 and 1916.

In 1920, Mr. Peter Turner of Morven Homestead, conscious of the lack of school facilities, interviewed the farming families living in this area and found there were approximately eleven children of school age. He then travelled to Melbourne to interview the State Education Department and offered them use of a cottage free of rent, and with maintenance, firewood and horse stabling free if a school could be opened there. His offer was accepted and the second Morven School, No. 3826, opened in this cottage on March 3rd, 1921.

Mr. Wilson was appointed the first teacher and was a great success, being a good teacher, an excellent cricketer and footballer and even owned a car - a T-Model Ford. He was followed by Miss Swain, then in 1928 by Miss Elsie Burgin, and by Mr. Olsen in 1929. The school attendance dropped and Morven then became a half-time school with Hotspur with Mr. King as teacher, and closed in 1930. It is good to note here the co-operative and caring attitude of the surrounding families. Several neighbours without children arranged for a relative of school age to live with them and attend the school, solely to ensure that the attendance necessary to keep the school open was maintained. They also generously gave books, pictures and a gramophone. Older children stayed on longer and very young siblings attended intermittently to keep the always precariously low numbers above the closing point.

In 1945 Miss Valmai Sprigg was appointed for one year to open the third Morven school in a vacant dwelling owned by Mr. Edwards. This school closed in 1947.

Janet Barber
(nee Turner, daughter of Peter Turner mentioned above) and a pupil at the second Morven school.