Last updated:

November 15, 2016

What do I need to know?

Key details of a public building such as:

  • name of building
  • location
  • type

Note: public buildings are theatres or sports ovals, public works are schools or hospitals. Try Public works plans as well

How do I search?

These files are organised into units containing references to multiple buildings. Order the whole unit close unit Definition A Unit is a storage container to store physical records. A Unit may be a box, bundle, plan press drawer, tube etc, containing individual record Items. A Unit may also be a single volume. You can order Units for viewing in one of our Reading Rooms. and browse through to find your relevant file. 

About these records

The Department of Health kept files and plans on public buildings such as community halls, schools, cinemas, theatres and even the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

The primary function close function Definition Functions describe the role and administrative activities of government e.g. inquests. A list of functions is similar to a subject index or thesaurus. Function information tells you which agencies have created records relating to that Function. For example, there have been two agencies responsible for the same function of registering inquests (Function 43 (VF 43) Inquests registration) the Chief Secretary's Department until 1869 and the Registrar-General's Department from 1869 to 1873. of these records kept from the 1920s to 1988 was to detail the compliance of these public buildings with health and safety regulations (e.g. number of toilets, fire safety and so on). 

A 'public building' is regarded as any building used for entertainment, amusement, recreation or education (excluding state schools). Other buildings included in this series are hospitals and churches.

Next Steps

Once you have found a public building file close file Definition An accumulation of documents relating to the same subject, person, activity or transaction that are kept together.  Documents in a file are usually, but not always, fastened together.  Files are usually arranged in an identifiable sequence (e.g. numerical or alphabetical). of interest, you can order close order Definition Physical records can be ordered for viewing in PROV’s reading rooms.  When a user orders a record, it is reserved solely for their use. online and view it in our North Melbourne Reading Room.

What are in these records?

Public buildings files relate to buildings used by the public e.g. cinemas and churches. 

Files usually contain some or all of the following:

  • name of building
  • building address
  • building plans
  • correspondence (regarding such issues like inspections)
  • changes to the building

Larger public building files may contain material about specific events (e.g. a seating plan for a concert).

Tip!: For buildings built or maintained by the government e.g. schools and hospitals see our Public works files