Wednesday, July 21, 2010

History of the Festival

Once it had been decided to establish a Festival of Glass, the sub-committee looked for a venue to hold such an event. Church and school halls were considered, however the Potato Shed was clearly the best venue because of it lending itself to a large range of possible configurations to cater for a diverse range of glass products and services.

The other issue was "ownership or naming" of the event. The Drysdale & Clifton Springs Community Association Inc. are establishing the Festival and right from the beginning, the committee felt that calling it the Drysdale and Clifton Springs Festival of Glass was going to be too much of a mouthful, despite the fact that the Association is based in both towns.

It was decided to keep it simple and just call it the Drysdale Festival of Glass, primarily because the event will be held in Drysdale. If there had been a suitable location in Clifton Springs, no doubt it could have been labelled the Clifton Springs Glass Show or something similar.

Clifton Springs does have some historical connection with glass, due to the fact that in the late 1800's there was a mineral springs bathhouse and bottling plant on the foreshore at Clifton Springs. A lovely hotel was built on the clifftop, near the golf clubhouse and the mineral springs complex was a huge vacation spot not just for people who came out from Geelong and districts with their horse drawn buggies, but from Melbourne and beyond, who arrived here via ships. It was indeed unfortunate that the hotel was burnt to the ground in about 1925 and was never rebuilt. Motor cars and other holiday destinations took over and the mineral springs plant went into decline and was literally abandoned. Very little of what was a thriving industry remains.

There are not many of the original bottles that remain in their entirety, however we will endeavour to have some at the Festival for viewing

1 comment:

  1. Perhaps the Historical Society could organise an exhibition of photos of the hotel, springs, etc. to put the bottles in context.
    Also, the City of Greater Geelong has an exhibition in the foyer of City Hall that includes a Clifton Springs bottle or two - I'm sure that they'd be pleased to loan it to the Festival.