October 2022

The Spotswood Pumping Station
Melbourne Australia
The Photography of Jon Rendell

The pumping station is a bit of a pop culture icon, having made appearances in 'Mad Max' (1979), the movie 'Spotswood' (starring Anthony Hopkins, Russell Crowe, and Toni Colette) (1992) and more recently, 'Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries' (2011). With its splendid facade and dramatic mansard towers, the 130-year old pumping
station looks more like a European castle, than a sewage treatment site. Built in the 1890s and operational until 1965, the Spotswood Pumping Station was
the heart of Melbourne's sewage system.

The Spotswood Pumping Station Melbourne Australia | Jon Rendell | Scene4 Magazine | October2022 | www.scene4.com
The station is unique in Australia as an intact ensemble of buildings, sewerage pumping machinery, and objects. In terms of its integrity and rarity the complex has no parallel in Australia.


The Aboriginal flag flies proudly above the Westgate Bridge (over the yarra
River) linking Melbourne CBD with the western suburbs.

A unique collection of steam engineering equipment as well as tools, furniture
and other objects, remain at the complex.

The pumping station worshops are currently housing the 'Great Melbourne
Telescope'. Installed in 1869 at the Melbourne Observatory, the 'Great Melbourne Telescope'was the largest fully steerable telescope of its time. The telescope was
relocated to Mount Stromlo, Australian Capital Territory in 1945 and remained in
active service up until 2003 when it was significantly damaged by a bushfire.
Museums Victoria has partnered with the Astronomical Society of Victoria to
restore the telescope for public viewing and a return to the Melbourne


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Scene4 Magazine - Jon Rendell | www.scene4.com

Jon Rendell was born into an auteur/photog family in Melbourne, Australia, in 1957, He grew up around cameras and film. He honed his craft under renowned photographer Athol Shmith at what is now Swinburne University (Prahran Campus, Melbourne). He was always captivated by shadows and finds himself hard-wired to focusing on the transitory, abstract shapes that come and go with the available light. For more of his photography in Scene4, check the Archives.

©2022 Jon Rendell
©2022 Publication Scene4 Magazine





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