Lalor 3075Lalor is a postwar residential suburb 17 km. north of Melbourne in the north of what was formerly Thomastown.
In 1946 a group of ex-servicemen, mostly with links with the labour movement, formed the Peter Lalor Home-Building Cooperative Society to provide cheap homes during a coming period of high demand and shortage of materials. (Lalor was the leader of the Eureka Stockade rebellion in Ballarat, 1854.) They chose land east of today's railway station, and engaged Saxel Tuxen, town planner, to design a garden suburb.
Many streets are named after Victoria Cross winners. The Cooperative succeeded in beginning the house building but under-capitalisation resulted in the program being taken over by the War Service Homes Commission. The Cooperative's ambition to form a new community was not unlike the motive for Germantown (later named Wesgarthtown), partly in today's Lalor on the western side of the railway line.
Lalor has expanded well beyond the Cooperative's land area. A primary school was opened in 1954, reaching an enrolment of 1,000 in 1971, by when three others were opened. There are a Peter Lalor Secondary College and a Lalor Secondary College. A drive-in shopping centre is near High Street and a small group of shops at the core of the Saxel Tuxen street layout near the railway station.
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