The Toodyay Historical Society, established in 1980 as the Toodyay Society, is a knowledgeable, friendly and active organisation within the town.
Members meet monthly and also hold regular activities including excursions, dinners and lectures.
The Society has a substantial library of publications relating to Toodyay and a growing collection of historical photographs. Members have produced a significant body of oral histories and a number of small publications relating to aspects of the town’s history.
Experienced members provide assistance to researchers, Toodyay businesses and local organisations in their historical research.
Foundation of the Society
In 1980 the Toodyay Tourist Centre arranged a seminar to discuss the Historic Precincts aspects of the Toodyay Town Planning Scheme. There was considerable community interest:
On 30 October 1980 an informal gathering was held at the Masters’ ‘Glen Avon’ property for those interested in forming a society for the preservation and restoration of Toodyay’s historic buildings and character, and in promoting knowledge and practice of old arts and crafts.
The gathering resolved to proceed with the formation of a society. The inaugural meeting of The Toodyay Society was held at the home of Les & Moya Hammill in Telegraph Road, Toodyay, on 25 November 1980, with thirty-seven members in attendance.
The Objectives of The Toodyay Society (Inc.), in its 1980 Constitution, were:
- To maintain the identity of Toodyay by encouraging preservation and restoration of buildings and settings of historical significance.
- To encourage the use of sympathetic architectural patterns when new buildings are constructed
- To discourage the disfigurement of premises, streets and open places by unsightly and inappropriate advertisements, poles, wires and unseemly structures.
- To promote and encourage the awareness of historical values.
- To encourage the study and writing of the history of the Toodyay area.
- To encourage and assist in the collection, classification and preservation of records relating to the history of the area.
- To promote lectures, readings, discussions, excursions to historical sites and exhibitions of historical material.
- To encourage contact with other similar associations, especially those in Western Australia.
Toodyay Historical Society today
The current Objects of the Society, as listed in its 2017 Rules of Associations are:
- To collect, record, maintain and make available to the public historical records pertinent to Toodyay and its inhabitants.
- To promote and encourage awareness of Toodyay’s history through social gatherings and excursions to sites of historical interest; talks and lectures, open days and exhibitions; our website, media outlets and other digital media.
- To encourage and support research, writing and publishing on the history of Toodyay.
- To encourage the conservation and preservation of those aspects of the built and natural environments that contribute to the character and history of the Shire of Toodyay.
- To encourage contact with similar associations.
- To encourage and support the establishment of museums and other repositories of local history.