Labels

#blog12daysxmas (24) #blogjune (30) #cf14 (12) 2008 Victorian Community History Awards (1) 2009 Victorian Community History Awards (1) Abbotsford (23) Abbotsford Convent (8) Abbotsford Street (2) Alan Marshall (1) Albert Hall (1) Alexandra Parade (1) Baptist Church (2) Beacon Lighting (1) Bells (2) Boroondara Cemetery (2) Brickmakers' Arms Hotel (1) CARA (1) Caroline Hogg (2) Carringbush Hotel (1) Cemeteries (2) cf14 (1) Charity (1) Christmas (2) Church of Christ Tabernacle (1) Cinema Italia (1) City of Collingwood (2) Clarke Street (1) Clement Hodgkinson (1) Clifton Cinema (1) Clifton Hill (37) Clifton Hill Hotel (1) Clifton Hill Primary School 1360 (1) Clifton Hill Station (1) Clifton's (1) Clouds (3) Colleen Burke (1) Collingwood (22) Collingwood Council (2) Collingwood Football Club (3) Collingwood Historical Society (2) Collingwood Library (2) Collingwood Town Hall (4) Collingwood United Masonic Temple (1) Colour (3) Community Garden (1) Cottages (1) Councillors (1) Court Perseverance (1) Craft (2) Dalkeith (1) Daniel Mannix (1) Daniel O'Connell Hotel (1) Darling Gardens (2) Denton Hat Mills (1) Dight's Falls (2) Dummett Crescent (1) Earth (3) Easey Street (1) Easter (2) Eliza "Granny" Foster (1) emotion (2) Endings (2) Esk (1) Faith (1) Fingers (3) Flickr (19) Flickr Challenge Friday (12) Flockhart Street (1) fluff (3) Fluff Hair (1) Forester's Hall (1) Fox Hotel (1) Foy and Gibson (7) fp13 (27) fp2012 (26) Frederick Warming (1) Friendly Societies Hotel (1) Friends (3) Friends of the Earth (2) Gahans Reserve (1) Games (3) Gipps Street (1) Gold Street (3) Gold Street Primary (2) Good Shepherd Sisters (3) Green (2) Groom Street (1) History (2) Hoddle Street (2) Hodgkinson Street (1) Hotels (4) Illumination (3) Infoxchange (1) International Women's Day (1) J. Forbes Mackenzie (2) John Forde (1) John Wren (2) Johnston Street (5) Keele Street (1) Kerry Greenwood (1) Kew (1) Kinross (1) Kristin Otto (1) Landscape (3) Langridge Street (2) Larry Harrigan (1) Little Tony's (1) love (1) Maps (1) Marie Louise Bernadou (1) Mary Forde (1) Mater Street (1) Maureen McCarthy (1) Max Meldrum (1) Maximilian Kreitmayer (1) Mayor (1) Mayors (1) Mayors Park (1) Melbourne General Cemetery (1) Mercury and Weekly Courier (2) Merri Creek (1) National Trust tree Register (1) Nicholson Street (2) Norman Trescowthick (1) North Terrace Clifton Hill (1) Oxford Street (3) Page Street (2) Park Hotel (2) Park Street (1) Peel Street (2) Penguins (1) Peter Fitzpatrick (1) Phoenix Hotel (1) Phryne Fisher (1) Publications (2) Punters Palace Hotel (1) Queens Parade (12) Rainbows (2) Raines Reserve (1) Reading (1) Rebecca Jamieson (1) Remote (3) Retreat Hotel (1) Rita Jamieson (2) Robert McLeish (1) Samian Social Club (1) Schools (1) Shiny (3) Shoes (2) Shot Tower (1) Sisters of Charity (1) Smith Street (7) Socks (2) St John the Baptist Catholic Church (8) St Nicholas' Croatian Catholic Church (2) Stitches (3) Surfaces (3) Technology (3) Terminus Hotel (1) Terrace Gardens (1) The Star (2) Thomas Tunnecliffe (1) Tower Hotel (1) Trueform Boot Factory (1) Union of Australian Women (2) United Kingdom Hotel (2) Victoria Park (4) Victoria Street (1) Victorian Parliament (1) Village Belle Hotel (2) Water (1) Wellington Street (5) Wesleyan Church (2) Westgarth (1) Westleigh (1) Whybrows (1) Wildlife (2) William Nicholls (1) William Rain (1) Wind (3) Yarra Bend Park (1) Yarra Hotel (1) Yarra River (3) Yarradale Flats (1)

Flickr Photostream

Follow by Email

Followers

A blog about the history of the former Melbourne municipality of Collingwood.

06 June 2013

28 North Terrace Clifton Hill #blogjune Day 5

28 North Terrace Clifton Hill by Collingwood Historical Society
28 North Terrace Clifton Hill, a photo by Collingwood Historical Society on Flickr.

When you walk past this house in North Terrace do you ever wonder who lived there in the past? This was the house where Thomas "Tommy" Tunnecliffe lived. Tunnecliffe was born on 13 July 1869 at Coghills Creek, Victoria, son of John Tunnecliffe, a bootmaker from England.  Tunnecliffe followed his father into this trade and gained his education from State schools and the Workingman's College.  

Active in the union movement, he became the member for West Melbourne in 1903 and was MLA for a short time until it was abolished. He stood unsuccessfully for the seat of Melbourne and the Senate but returned to State Parliament in 1907 in the seat of Eaglehawk which he held until his defeat in 1920.  In 1924, after his return to Melbourne, he was returned to Victorian Parliament as the member for Collingwood a seat he held until ill health caused him to resign in 1947.

During this period he served as Chief Secretary, Minister for Railways and Electrical Undertakings, and acting Premier during the 1932 election in Premier Hogan's absence overseas. After Hogan's departure Tunnecliffe was elected leader of the Opposition, a position he held until 1935 when Labor moved to the cross-benches. In 1937-40 he was Speaker and later moved to the back benches. He died at 28 North Terrace on 2 February 1948 and was given a state funeral at Fawkner crematorium. Thomas Tunnecliffe was named in the Wren libel trial as politician Tom Trumbleward in Frank Hardy's Power without Glory, and was allegedly under the Wren influence.

Tunnecliffe is one of the people that the Collingwood Historical Society is researching for inclusion in the Notables of Collingwood database that is being developed for inclusion on the website.   Do you know anything about Thomas Tunnecliffe and his family or do you have stories about his time as Member for Collingwood?  If so, we would love to hear from you.  Please comment below or email us at collingwoodhs@yahoo.com.


1 comment:

Alan Walker said...

Tom Tunnecliffe was my great uncle: his wife, Bertha Gross, was a sister of my grandmother, Chris Gross/Laidler. He died a couple of years before I was born, but his widow stayed in the North Terrace house for many years, and my family often visited there during the 1950s and 60s.

The Gross family had come from Germany in the 1880s, and lived in Richmond for many years. Several members of the family were keen socialists, and Tom Tunnecliffe probably met his future wife through the Victorian Socialist Party. Although Bertha Gross was not as politically involved as her sister Chris (my grandmother), she attended social functions run by the VSP.

There is a chapter about the Gross family in a book called Solidarity Forever, written by Bertha Walker, my mother, about her father, the socialist activist and bookseller Percy Laidler. Percy Laidler was Tom Tunnecliffe's brother-in-law. This book is available online at http://www.solidarityforeverbook.com. The chapter on the Gross family is at http://www.solidarityforeverbook.com/cgi-bin/showchapter.pl?c=6.

My grandparents and parents did not always see eye to eye politically with Tunnecliffe, as they were very left wing, while he moved towards the centre during his long parliamentary career. They also disapproved of his links to John Wren.

During his years on the Labor front bench, Tom Tunnecliffe was involved in some extraordinary political events, most notably the state election of 1932, when the premier was effectively thrown out of his party during the campaign.

The Premier, Ned Hogan, was in England receiving medical treatment, and Tunnecliffe was Acting Premier, when the government lost the support of three independent MPs and was forced to an early election. The Premier did not return from overseas, so it fell to Tom Tunnecliffe to lead the election campaign.

The issue that split the Labor Party was the Premiers' Plan, the scheme adopted by the Premiers' Conference for dealing with the Great Depression. The Plan was designed to reduce government spending by 20 percent, and included savage cuts to pensions and wages. The Victorian trade unions and Labor Party machine were violently opposed to the main features of the plan. The Premier, Ned Hogan, was a staunch supporter of the Plan, but his deputy, Tom Tunnecliffe, tended to equivocate, calling himself a supporter of the spirit of the Plan. It transpired that some of the cables Hogan had sent in support of the Plan had been only partially communicated to the cabinet by the Acting Premier.

Because of his advocacy of the Premiers' Plan, Hogan was denied party endorsement for his electorate. A number of other ministers were dis-endorsed or expelled from the party during the campaign. Needless to say, such a spectacular display of disunity led to a massive defeat, the party being reduced from thirty seats to sixteen.

There is a good account of the 1932 election in Trade Unions and the Depression: A Study of Victoria, 1930-1932 (1968), by L J Louis.

Tom Tunnecliffe was returned for the Collingwood electorate, and was elected Labor Party leader in the new parliament.

Total Pageviews

FEEDJIT Live Traffic Feed

Blog Archive