Rotary Club of Ballarat

The Astonishing History Of Ballarat - Doug Bradby Gallery

The Astonishing History of Ballarat

Doug has lived and worked all his life in Ballarat.

His paternal grandfather walked to Ballarat as a ten-year-old boy with his widowed Mum and his little brother and sister. His maternal grandfather was also involved in the mining industry as a contractor who erected the poppet heads on many of Ballarat's mines.

With his wife Julie, Doug now lives just outside Buninyong where Thomas Hiscock discovered the Ballarat goldfield in 1851. Julie and Doug have converted the Scotchman's Lead Wesleyan Church into a self-contained B and B called, appropriately, "The Miners' Church"

He has taught history for 30 years at Ballarat Secondary Schools, Doug then spent over a decade at the Gold Museum, Sovereign Hill.

He has written 3 books on The Astonishing History of Ballarat,

Doug spoke of the story of mining and development in Ballarat West between 1856 and 1883, and particularly the arrival of industry and the discovery of gold at Ballarat. How the Ballarat gold field was discovered Poverty Point, and at Golden Point.

The diggers arrived, mined, lived, and governed themselves at Ballarat. He, spoke of the Gravel Pits on the Gold field how the miners of Ballarat Flat learnt to work 'in the water.' It was a crucial time in Ballarat's mining history, 1856 the year the miners first went 'below the blue rock' into the deep leads of Ballarat West, Redan, and Sebastopol. There they would find and extract about five million ounces of Gold

Doug has written several other books a series of Ten Delightful Tales, Bridge Street: The Historic Heart of Ballarat, and Merry Christmas from Historic Ballarat and children's books 

His engaging, interesting, and thought-provoking talk about the History of Ballarat and Goldfields was enjoyed by all members.