Premier Permanent, Collins Street, 1887, not so permanent.

Original post 9 April 2020

When I first saw a photo of this I was like OMG what a feast ! Delicious ! It seems like most of the really OTT #highvictorian things were lost on the 1950s-60s, and this was right up there ! The #PemierPermanent Building Society, on #CollinsStreet south side just down from Swanston, was built in 1887, and designed by #CharlesDEbro. There’s details here not seen on surviving buildings, like the slim columns of the first and second floors, with engaged blocks and brackets, and in the centre supporting bays thrust forward in front of the already elaborate walls. As one of the quasi-banks that caused the 1880s boom and subsequent crash, they went into liquidation only 3 years later, in March 1890, but their HQ remained, known as the Premier Building. It was replaced by the super dull #WalesCorner, so it survived until c1964 when the #colourslide was taken (it’s from the files of the @nationaltrustvic). A while ago I discovered it wasn’t totally lost – all three of the #caryatids (#hemicaryatids?) survive inside the @thecolonialhotel in King Street – an 1850s warehouse that was the super cool #LazarsRestaurant in the 70s (and maybe the 60s?). More #MelbourneFragments.

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