190-192 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy (McColl Electric Works)

Originally this building was part of the W. and A Bennetts and Son, ironmongers suite of buildings which took out this whole corner site. The image below shows to the right the main building used by the company on Brunswick Street, and behind this building on the left down Moor Street you can see the two taller (three storey) buildings which were also part of the operation.

Google Image – April 2022

In researching Moran & Cato (known to occupy the corner of Brunswick and Victoria Streets) I stumbled across two pieces of information, the first that Moran & Cato leased the premises of Bennetts & Co, and second a photo and confirmation of the location. The following are those two pieces of information “The business soon began to expand, so that at the end of 1884 eight branches has been established, and in the same year a wholesale depot was opened at the premises of Messrs. W. and A. Bennetts, in Brunswick Street, Fitzroy. “ (The Cyclopedia of Victoria, 1903-1905, Vol 1 p.521-522). “The premises of which we given an illustration is at the corner of Moor and Brunswick Streets, and from this central depot are distributed the goods required for the different branches in the various suburbs” (The Leader, 8 Feb 1896). The confirmation is the two pictures below which show the same building between the two.

Image held by Fitzroy Library. . Taken from the Collingwood and Fitzroy illustrated Directory and Handbook, 1905.
Image from The Leader, 8 Feb 1896

Of the above building, in 1896 “The vast business transacted… And from this central depot are distributed the goods required for the different branches in the various suburbs. The names of Moran and Cato are as holdhold (sic) words, and are a guarantee that their customers obtain good value for their money. The wholesale business is extensive not only in rural centres, but with stations on the back blocks in Victoria and the neighbouring colonies.” The Leader, 8 Feb 1896

Melbourne and Metropolitan Board of Works detail plan, 1204, City of Fitzroy – 1899 – Held by the State Library

Clearly from the photo below and the current image, the buildings are removed and replaced with McColl Electric Works. I have yet to research this company or building.

McColl Electric Works Ltd, 104 Moor Street, Fitzroy. Image held by Fitzroy Library. Taken from Fitzroy Municipal Rating Study. 1948

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: