Portal:Victoria

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The VICTORIA PORTAL

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Victoria is a state located in the south-eastern corner of Australia. It is the smallest mainland state in area, but the most densely populated and urbanised. Victoria shares borders with New South Wales to the north, South Australia to the west, over the Tasman Sea towards the east, New Zealand, and across Bass Strait to the south, Tasmania

Victoria began in the 1830s as a farming community when the Hentys settled at Portland, Melbourne being founded soon after. With the discovery of gold in 1851 and Victorian independence from New South Wales, it was transformed into a leading industrial and commercial centre of the nation. In 1901, it became a part of the Commonwealth of Australia. Melbourne became the economic centre of both Australia and neighbour New Zealand at the time.

The Victorian economy is the second largest in Australia, accounting for a quarter of the nation's gross domestic product. The total gross state product at current prices for Victoria was at just over A$222 billion, with a GSP per capita of A$44,443. The economy grew by 3.4% in 2004, less than the Australian average of 5.2%. Finance, insurance and property services form Victoria's largest income producing sector, while the community, social and personal services sector is the state's biggest employer. Despite the shift towards service industries, the troubled manufacturing sector remains Victoria's single largest employer and income producer.

Selected article

Shrine of Rememberence, Melbourne
The Shrine of Remembrance, located in Kings Domain on St Kilda Road, Melbourne, was built as a memorial to the men and women of Victoria who served in World War I and is now a memorial to all Australians who have served in war. It is a site of annual observances of ANZAC Day (25 April) and Remembrance Day (11 November) and is one of the largest war memorials in Australia.

Designed by architects Phillip Hudson and James Wardrop who were both World War I veterans, the Shrine is in a classical style, being based on the Tomb of Mausolus at Halicarnassus and the Parthenon in Athens. Built from Tynong granite, the Shrine originally consisted only of the central sanctuary surrounded by the ambulatory. The sanctuary contains the marble Stone of Remembrance, upon which is engraved the words "Greater love hath no man". Once a year, on 11 November at 11 a.m. (Remembrance Day), a ray of sunlight shines through an aperture in the roof to light up the word "Love" in the inscription. Beneath the sanctuary lies the crypt, which contains a bronze statue of a soldier father and son, and panels listing every unit of the First Australian Imperial Force.

In 2002-2003 a Visitor Centre was built within the foundations of the Shrine. The visitor centre designed by Ashton Raggatt McDougall incorporates an education centre, an audio-visual centre, gallery space, a retail shop and an administration office, as well the Hall of Columns, Gallery of Medals, entry courtyard and Remembrance Garden. The walls of both the entry courtyard and Remembrance Garden have been built to complement the Ray of Light ceremony that takes place on 11 November of every year.

Selected picture

Melbourne Cricket Ground in 1999
Credit: PaddyBriggs

The Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) is an Australian sports stadium located in Yarra Park in inner Melbourne, home to the Melbourne Cricket Club. It is the largest stadium in Australia, and holds the world record for the highest light towers at any sporting venue. The MCG is within walking distance of the city centre, and is serviced by Richmond and Jolimont train stations.

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Selected biography

Wilfrid Kent Hughes
Sir Wilfrid Selwyn Kent Hughes KBE, MVO, MC (12 June 1895 – 31 July 1970) was an Australian soldier, Olympian and Olympic Games organiser, author and federal and state government minister.

Kent Hughes was born in Melbourne to an upper middle-class family. He was set to attend the University of Oxford on a Rhodes Scholarship when he enlisted in the army on the outbreak of World War I. After his discharge from the army, Kent Hughes attended Oxford and represented Australia in athletics as a hurdler at the 1920 Summer Olympics in Antwerp. Upon the completion of his degree at Oxford, Kent Hughes returned to Australia, seeking a career in politics. Elected to the Victorian state parliament in 1927, Kent Hughes sat with the conservative Nationalist Party of Australia, rising to the position of Deputy Premier of Victoria. Kent Hughes proved to be a controversial figure in politics, and was never afraid to publicly espouse his personal beliefs, such as an admiration for fascism, of which he had a poor understanding.

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The Swanston Street façade of the Capitol Theatre.

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