By ESTHER MACINTYRE

THE old power sub-station on Deakin Avenue has been demolished, despite a community petition with support from Mildura MP Ali Cupper.

Workers began demolition Tuesday afternoon, slowly removing chunks of the concrete structure.

Passers-by watched with a mix of emotions, some upset to be losing a piece of history and others saying it was an inevitable change.

“It has to be done I suppose, but it’s a historical part of town, so it’s a bit sad,” said John Wilson.

“I’m fuming,” said Michael Iredale, who grew up in Mildura.

“I’ve just come down to watch the destruction of old number ’36. Not happy.

“This is the start of it. They will just keep knocking things down unless the people, the ratepayers of Mildura stand up … and get this council to start doing something about keeping our heritage.”

Mr Iredale’s son, Corey Iredale, started the petition ‘Save Old ’36’ on change.org to try and raise community awareness of the building’s imminent demolition.

When the fluoro netting went up and the campaign started a month ago, Corey said: “This is the original source of electricity that spread through the town way back when in the mid-1930s.

“It’s a piece of history that would be awesome if we could retain and maybe repurpose if that’s possible.”

Powercor cited safety concerns with the original building and said it had looked at restoring the building.

“Consideration was given to a restoration of the building, but after detailed inspections by our teams, it was determined the option was not feasible,” a Powercor spokesperson said.

The safest option for both Powercor workers and the public was to replace the electricity supply to the Mildura CBD with a modern sub-station and remove the existing building.

Mildura Rural City Council had said the building was not identified during community consultation in “Stage One of the Mildura Heritage Study Part B focusing on the former Mildura City and Shire”.

“The sub-station was not nominated and has not been included in the list of places identified,” a spokesperson said.