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Bendigo Fast Facts
1. The name Bendigo originated from a world famous bare knuckled boxer, William "Abednigo" Thompson, a shepherd on the Ravenswood run near Bendigo was handy with his fists and became renouned as a great fighter. He lived in his hut on a creek which flowed through the valley where gold was found. It is said that this shepherd, nicknamed "Abednigo" lent his name to this rich Goldfield.
2. Like many of the towns across Central Victoria, Bendigo owes its origins to the gold rushes of the nineteenth century. Gold was first discovered in Bendigo in 1851. In the 1880’s Bendigo was the richest city in the world due to its gold production. Gold production in Bendigo was sustained right through until the 1950s and today is seeing a resurgence with Bendigo Mining currently mining underneath the city.
3. In 1871, the area experienced a mining boom which saw over 760 new companies floated at the Beehive Mining Exchange in Pall Mall.
4. The City of Greater Bendigo is one of Victoria's leading regional cities, and is located in the geographic centre of the state, 150 kms north-west of Melbourne.
5. The City of Greater Bendigo has a population of approximately 99,792 with some 75,000 living in the urban areas.
6. Bendigo's location on the northern fringe of the Great Dividing Range means it enjoys a mild climate. The region averages 240 rain-free days per year with a mean January temperature of 29 degrees and 12 degrees in July.
7. The Bendigo business community has some 4,000 enterprises and employs in excess of 30,000 people with an economic output of $32 billion per year.
8. Bendigo is home to the only regionally based bank in Australia, Bendigo Bank.
9. Bendigo also boasts the Bendigo Stock Exchange (BSX); the hub for Telstra's national voice and data satellite communication and the Bendigo Community Telco.
10. Bendigo was proclaimed a city in 1871
11. Bendigo, today is the second highest producing goldfield in Australia and remains the seventh largest in the world.
12. Sidney Myer opened the first MYER store in Bendigo in 1901
13. Sir John Quick - a tireless worker for Australia's Federation and a key draftsman of the Australian Constitution spent most of his life in Bendigo and is buried in the Bendigo cemetery.
14. The Chicko Roll was developed in Bendigo in 1951
15. Bendigo's Red Ribbon Rebellion occurred on the 28th August 1853 - more than one year prior to the bloody Eureka uprising in Ballarat.
16. The Bendigo to Melbourne train line opened in October 1862
17. The Bendigo Racecourse has been in existence since the 1850s and the Bendigo Cup pre-dates the Melbourne Cup
18. Famous performers including Lola Montez and Dame Nellie Melba visited Bendigo
19. The Bendigo area was a major wine producer in the 19th century winning major prizes in Europe, until the industry was decimated in 1893 by the Phylloxera virus.
20. The Bendigo Easter Fair began in 1871 and is Australia's oldest ongoing festival.
21. Bendigo's local newspaper - The Bendigo Advertiser has been in existence since 1853, the first newspaper on the Australian Goldfields.
22. The Alexandra Fountain was named after the then Princess of Wales, whose Father became Edward VII. The Fountain was officially opened in 1881 by Princess Alexandra's two eldest sons, Princes Albert and George (later to become George V)
23. Work first commenced on the Sacred Heart Cathedral in 1896 and it was officially consecrated in 1977 eighty years later. The height of the main Sacred Heart Cathedral spire is 86.64 metres (284 feet).
24. Pall Mall is named after the comparable one in London.
25. Rosalind Park is named after ‘Rosalind’ in Shakespeare's play "As you Like it"
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