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Victoria - Organisation

Tally Ho Boys' Training Farm (1903 - 1986)

  • Central Mission Boys' Training Farm, Tally Ho - staff and boys outside main dormitory 1908

    Central Mission Boys' Training Farm, Tally Ho - staff and boys outside main dormitory 1908, courtesy of Wesley Mission Victoria.
    Details

From
1903
To
1986
Categories
Children's Home, Cottage Home, Farm School, Home, Protestant and Wesleyan Methodist
Alternative Names
  • Central Methodist Mission Training Farm
  • Central Mission Boys' Training Farm (1903 - c. 1956)
  • Tally Ho Boys' Village (c. 1956 - 1978)
  • Tally Ho Village (1978 - )

Tally Ho opened in 1903 in Burwood. This institution, run by the Wesley Central Mission, was for boys 'rescued' from the city slums to be trained in farm work. From 1977, Tally Ho received girls as well as boys. It closed in 1986.

Details

Tally Ho Training Farm opened in 1903 under the auspices of the Wesley Central Mission. Disillusioned with boy rescue schemes to send unemployed boys up country during the 1890s depression, the Rev. George Cole (1859-1919) established Tally Ho to prepare city youth for farm work.

The site was between Burwood and Highbury Roads, extending from Springvale Road to Newhaven Road. The 'village' itself (as opposed to the farm lands) was on Highbury Road.

The Burwood institution was often an innovator in youth welfare, introducing self-government during the 1930s and the cottage system in the 1950s and, 20 years later, developing on and off-site services for girls as well as boys.

Tally Ho had its own school on-site (No 3588) from 1905. Boys were educated there until the 1960s, when moves were made to educate Tally Ho residents in local schools.

The introduction of the 'boys' parliament' and the transition to a village comprising cottage homes were reforms introduced by Edgar Derrick, Superintendent at Tally Ho from 1930 to 1951. Derrick described Tally Ho's system of democratic self-government in 1932:

The farm is run as a community and each member has the right to vote. The laws are made by the Parliament, consisting of boys and staff, and the proceedings are carried out with much dignity. The laws are enforced by a police force and offenders are dealt with by a court. By giving the boys an opportunity to express themselves in this way, they feel that they are treated as peers, with no atmosphere in which they would feel inferior to an adult.

Derrick's time at Tally Ho was a time of reform and innovation. In line with international trends in child welfare, Derrick transformed Tally Ho from large-scale, dormitory-style accommodation to a collection of smaller 'homes' where smaller groups of boys lived with cottage parents.

Derrick was also influential in the wider sector, serving as President of the Victorian Council of Social Service from 1954-56. He was also on the Executive of the Children's Welfare Association from 1950 to 1957, and was awarded life membership of the Association in 1957.

From 1937 to 1947, Tally Ho operated another farm at Lilydale, known as Woodlands Farm. A promotional publication from 1940 about Tally Ho described Woodlands as a "branch farm", where boys could study poultry-farming and orcharding. Woodlands could accommodate about 12 boys and staff.


From around 1939 until 1950, Tally Ho also ran a hostel in the city, known as Lincoln House, for boys leaving Tally Ho to pursue employment in non-farming work.

According to Howe and Swain, of the boys who left Tally Ho in 1947, only 25% went to be employed in farm work. Another 25% went to Lincoln House, and 50% went from Tally Ho to their families.

Some Aboriginal children from the Northern Territory were residents at Tally Ho during the 1950s. These boys were sent to Tally Ho in Victoria under a scholarship scheme of the Northern Territory Administration. In the 1950s, there were no high schools in Darwin, so young people wishing to do secondary or tertiary education had to attend boarding schools elsewhere. The NT Welfare Branch set up a scholarship scheme which enabled Aboriginal young people to be homed and schooled at locations interstate. Tally Ho was one of these locations, and Wesley Mission Victoria has admission and discharge records relating to placements organised by Harry Giese, the Director of Welfare in the Northern Territory Administration from 1954.

From the late 1950s, subsequent superintendents at Tally Ho introduced changes that made the Tally Ho 'village' more integrated with the community in which it was located, involved the boys' families, and sought to 'professionalise' its staff.

Ian Cox who became Tally Ho's superintendent in 1957 changed its admission policy. Tally Ho would no longer take 'voluntary admissions' and would concentrate on 'difficult offenders' referred from Turana.

In 1969, Superintendent Albert Godbehere resigned, and was replaced by Rev. Denis Oakley, a trained social worker. Oakley appointed more 'professionals' to work at Tally Ho, including John Smith, who started in 1970.

With the arrival of girls, the institution changed its name to Tally Ho Village in March 1978. Under the director, Rev. Bob Murphy, Tally Ho ran a Reality Therapy Program aimed at rehabilitation of young offenders.

In the late 1970s, Tally Ho Village comprised 7 cottages (with up to 6 children in each) and 4 family group homes (which aimed to have 4 children in each). The Tally Ho School was closed in 1977.

Despite these changes in practice, a review of Tally Ho in 1977 described the place as 'inescapably institutional', and recommended the sale of the land and a new system of scattered family group homes.

Wesley Mission held a 'celebration day' for former residents and staff of Tally Ho and members of the community on 29 June 1986. Tally Ho finally closed on 26 August 1986.

From this time, Tally Ho Youth Services ran some services for young people in different regions of Melbourne.

Location

1903 - 1986
Location - Tally Ho was located in Newhaven Road, Burwood East. Location: Burwood East

Timeline

 1903 - 1986 Tally Ho Boys' Training Farm
       1986 - 1989 Tally Ho Youth Services

Related Archival Collections

Related Glossary Terms

Related Organisations

Publications

Books

  • For whom the trail is steep, Central Mission Boys' Training Farm, Melbourne, 1940. Details
  • Coverdale, Douglas, It all turns out for the better: one man's story of his time in an Australian boys' home 1928-1935, and his life thereafter, Action Research Issues Association, Melbourne, 1995. Details
  • Georgeff, Diana, Delinquent Angel, Random House, 2007. Details
  • Howe, Renate; Swain, Shurlee, The Challenge of the City: the centenary history of Wesley Central Mission 1893-1993, Hyland House, Flemington, 1993. Details
  • Menzies, D.W., The grey people : a study of the criminal mind, Cassell, Melbourne, 1965. Details
  • Murray, Suellen, John Murphy, Elizabeth Branigan, Jenny Malone, After the orphanage: life beyond the children's home, University of New South Wales Press, Sydney, 2009. Details
  • Patterson, Jeffrey with Robert Hillman, What a life!, Ibis, South Melbourne, 2005. Details

Journals

  • Hops Steps and Jumps, Quarterly news from the Children's Welfare Association of Victoria, Children's Welfare Association of Victoria, 1975-1979. December, 1976; March 1978. Details

Newspaper Articles

  • 'Tally Ho Boys in Real Home', The Sun News-Pictorial, 2 August 1952, p. 13. Details
  • Turner, Laurence, 'Victoria's Unwanted Children - 6: Willing Hearts Handicapped by Lack of Cash', The Herald, 31 October 1952, p. 5. Details

Online Resources

Photos

Central Mission Boys' Training Farm, Tally Ho - staff and boys outside main dormitory 1908
Title
Central Mission Boys' Training Farm, Tally Ho - staff and boys outside main dormitory 1908
Type
Image
Date
1908
Source
Wesley Mission Victoria

Details

Central Mission Boys' Training Farm Tally Ho - aerial view of the farm 1935
Title
Central Mission Boys' Training Farm Tally Ho - aerial view of the farm 1935
Type
Image
Date
1935
Source
Wesley Mission Victoria

Details

Woodlands homestead
Title
Woodlands homestead
Type
Image
Date
c. 1940
Publisher
Central Mission Boys' Training Farm

Details

For Whom the Trail is Steep
Title
For Whom the Trail is Steep
Type
Document
Date
1940
Source
Queen's College Library, The University of Melbourne

Details

Report on fire at Tally Ho Boys' Village
Title
Report on fire at Tally Ho Boys' Village
Type
Document
Date
1964

Details

Tally Ho Boys' Village - entrance 1972
Title
Tally Ho Boys' Village - entrance 1972
Type
Image
Date
1972
Source
Wesley Mission Victoria

Details

Tally Ho Village - Administration Building 1980s
Title
Tally Ho Village - Administration Building 1980s
Type
Image
Date
c. 1980 - c. 1986
Source
Wesley Mission Victoria

Details

Tally Ho Village - Wesley Cottage 1980s
Title
Tally Ho Village - Wesley Cottage 1980s
Type
Image
Date
c. 1980 - c. 1986
Source
Wesley Mission Victoria

Details

Tally Ho Village from the air 1980s
Title
Tally Ho Village from the air 1980s
Type
Image
Date
c. 1980 - c. 1986
Source
Wesley Mission Victoria

Details

Tally Ho Boys Village
Title
Tally Ho Boys Village
Type
Document
Date
1987
Source
Lynda Campbell

Details

Sources used to compile this entry: For whom the trail is steep, Central Mission Boys' Training Farm, Melbourne, 1940; A helping hand needs financial help, The Argus, 3 September 1949, 10 pp, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article22776329; Hops Steps and Jumps, Quarterly news from the Children's Welfare Association of Victoria, Children's Welfare Association of Victoria, 1975-1979. December, 1976; March 1978.; Victoria Government Gazette Online Archive 1836-1997, State Library of Victoria, 2009, http://gazette.slv.vic.gov.au/; Giese, Harry, Planning a program for Aborigines in the 1950s, Northern Territory Library Service, Darwin, 1990, http://www.territorystories.nt.gov.au/handle/10070/153110; Howe, Renate; Swain, Shurlee, The Challenge of the City: the centenary history of Wesley Central Mission 1893-1993, Hyland House, Flemington, 1993; Swain, Shurlee, 'Tally Ho Boys' Village', in eMelbourne: the city past and present, Encyclopedia of Melbourne online, The University of Melbourne, 2008, http://www.emelbourne.net.au/biogs/EM01465b.htm.

Prepared by: Cate O'Neill