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Sunday, September 09, 2018


The Clay Pit at Vermont, 656 Mitcham Rd,  was first opened in 1925 to supply Wunderlich's Brunswick tile works. The Vermont tile manufacturng works opened in 1932.

The works, originally known as the Australian Tesselated Tile Co,  are historically significant for their association with the Wunderlich company, the principal importer of terra cotta roofing tiles in Australia from 1892 to the outbreak of World War I. The Wunderlich company became the largest Australian manufacturer of terra cotta roofing tiles, a material which literally changed the appearance of southern Australian suburbs, and which continued to remain popular one hundred years after its introduction.

The Vermont manufacturing plant, which retains its original office building, is the largest and most intact pre-war tile works in the State. The down draught kiln is the earliest known survivor of its type.

The heritage precinct area is now incorporated in the large Monier Tiling distribution centre property,  protected by a steel mesh fence. The property abuts Redland Rd, from where some of the original structures may be seen.

The works are architecturally significant for their use of lattice (Belfast) timber roof trusses in the curved roof structure which housed the kilns. This roof structure, probably relocated from the Brunswick tile works, is a rare industrial roof form, and the only known extant example of this type of truss in Victoria.

Parts of the original structures were demolished in 2008.

The heritage images , taken between 1920 and 1929, are sourced to the Wunderlich Collection at the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences (MAAS),

See the Victorian Heritage Council Report

View through through fence from Redland Drive (author Sep 2018)
View through through fence from Redland Drive
View through through fence from Redland Drive (author Sep 2018)

View through through fence from Redland Rd.

Access road, from Mitcham Rd. (author Sep 2018)

After demoliltion 2008 (DAAS)
Aerial view in 1920s - Mitcham Rd running from bottom to top right (DAAS)

Aerial view 1920s. Mitcham Rd at extreme lower right

Google Earth view, Sep 2018. The heritage area is at left centre

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