Sir Henry Bolte was a giant of Victorian Politics. A country boy from Ballarat, Sir Henry was Victoria’s 38th Premier.
The Bolte Government was elected in 1955 and Sir Henry remained as Premier until his retirement in 1972.
Some of the notable achievements of the Bolte Government are:
– ratifying the Snowy Mountains hydroelectric scheme agreements;
– establishing the National Parks Authority;
– providing support to provincial museums and galleries such as William Ricketts Sanctuary;
– expanding Gas and Oil supplies from the Bass Strait Oil Fields;
– legalising off-course betting with The Racing (Totalizators Extension) Act 1960;
– building and opening Monash University in 1961;
– completing the standard-gauge railway from Melbourne to Albury in 1962;
– expanding the Hazelwood Power Station in 1963;
– beginning construction of the Westgate Bridge in 1965;
– founding the Victoria Institute of Colleges in 1965 that led to the upgrading of senior technical colleges in Victoria;
– completing the La Trobe Library in 1965;
– introducing the .05 per cent blood-alcohol content for Victorian motorists in 1965;
– beginning the initial construction of the South Eastern Freeway (now CityLink) which was completed by the mid-1960s;
– building the Tullamarine Freeway, the first stage was completed by 1966;
– building and opening La Trobe University in 1967;
– beginning the first stage of the Victorian Arts Centre in 1968 with the National Gallery of Victoria;
– building and opening Melbourne’s new international Airport at Tullamarine in 1970;
– introducing the compulsory wearing of seatbelts in 1970;
– beginning construction of the City Loop underground train line in Melbourne in 1971;
– building and opening the first stage of what is now the Monash Freeway, the Mulgrave Freeway in 1972, and;
– beginning the construction of the Yallourn Power Station, commissioned between 1973 and 1981.
Sir Henry Bolte died in 1990 and is still the longest serving Premier in Victoria’s history.
Digital by James Hammon