Interested members of the community joined with descendants of former pupils and staff of the Mellier State School for a plaque unveiling recently.
The unveiling marked 100 years since the school relocated from Mount Pleasant to Norbank Road, Lake Bolac in 1919.
Following a welcome from the Lake Bolac and District Historical Society president Colin McKenzie, a history of the school was presented by society secretary, Phil Murray.
The school opened in 1906 at Mount Pleasant 14 kilometres from Lake Bolac and nine kilometres from Willaura.
This followed lobbying by parents to have a school east of the Hopkins River, which at that time formed a natural barrier to children being able to attend the Willaura School. Due to it being located in the Parish of Mellier the school was named Mellier.
By 1912, enrolments at the one-room school had reached a sizable 33 students.
In 1919 the school was moved eight kilometres away to Norbank Road to be more geographically centred to the majority of students attending the school at the time. A two acre block of land was donated by William and Mary Hucker for use as the school site.
By 1932 enrolments had fallen to just nine children and so the school closed and most of the children continued their education in at Lake Bolac. In 1939 the building was relocated again, this time to Dundonnell for use as a school there. It was later destroyed in a bushfire.
The plaque was unveiled by David Hucker, grandson of William and Mary. Afternoon tea followed at the Lake Bolac Memorial Hall where further anecdotes and information about the school were shared. Among these was a recording by Jock Hucker, one of only two known surviving former pupils of the school. He related some of his more humorous memories of attending the school and of the teachers who taught him.
Details of the attached school residence could be found in copies of letters written in 1930 by then Head Teacher, Mr Cecil Hunt. He described in detail the residence to his fiancé who, after marrying, came to live there. He described it as being 'on the whole a decent place'. Mr Hunt was Head Teacher when the school closed.
A display of photos created much interest and discussion.
All agreed that this was a most worthwhile project to ensure the little-known history of the Mellier State School is now more formally recorded.