SEC Workers leaving Yallourn, 1940s

Image: State Electricity Commission of Victoria 1949. Three Decades: The story of the State Electricity Commission of Victoria from its inception to December 1948. SEC, Melbourne.

DELWP has undertaken a social history study of the Latrobe Valley. This project gathered knowledge from representatives from the community, government agencies and the Gunaikurnai Land and Waters Aboriginal Corporation.

The communities of the Latrobe Valley have been at the forefront of Victoria’s power generation now for a century. But how exactly have the Valley’s communities contributed to and experienced their changing landscapes, workplaces and sense of selves?

The study documents the social lives of Latrobe Valley communities over time to provide deeper insight into the connections between the Valley and its people, and of the history and heritage that have made each what they are today.

The social and industrial history of the region has been defined by agriculture, the impacts of immigration, manufacturing, timber production, power generation and the State Electricity Commission of Victoria. The importance of clubs, whether based around sport, ethnic background, religion or workplace, was a local value identified as at the core of a local identity. Such clubs have provided strong support networks through the Valley’s periods of upheaval and transition.

The social history is not a chronological study. Rather, it explores how the Valley’s inhabitants have historically experienced their setting through the themes of land and water, work and industry, and communities and how this has influenced their sense of identity.

The social history will be used to inform planning initiatives and place-making through the identification and interpretation of places of significance and historic themes of importance.

Latrobe Valley Social History - Celebrating and recognising Latrobe Valley's history and heritage (PDF, 7.3 MB).

Page last updated: 26/06/20