Control Data Australia Memories compiled by Brian Membrey
424 St. Kilda Road
The new Illoura House was home to the CRISP/VICTAB team in a basement office that accommodated around 12 people. The direct entrance was from mid-
The corner has obviously dramatically changed, even in the mid-
David Leigh has recently suggested that the original team grew by 1977 to around 60 people with office space extending to the first and second floors, parts of which overlooked The Gentle Touch massage parlour, but I have yet to confirm the location of the latter (... I'm sure there's some receipts lying around somewhere ...)
Rather strangely, the Melbourne White Pages Directory from 1977 (when the CRISP team was still at Illoura) through to 1979 lists under the Control Data grouping “Small Systems Operations, 424 St. Kilda Road, 267-
I vaguely remember the CRISP team had a different number from 598 -
Just when the original mansion was built is a little hazy -
There is some evidence that the site was originally called Fitzroy House and later Astor House.
In 1936, the building was listed as vacant, and 1937 it reappeared as "Illoura Flats" although advertisements for larger-
Like a few other large private residences in St. Kilda and Queen’s Roads, Illoura was taken over by the Defence Department during the Second World War and became Sir Thomas Blamey's Melbourne headquarters for Land Signals. Post-
These never eventuated and the building was still in use as a private hotel under the care of Mr. A. K. Craige when again offered for sale in 1964, the purchaser London County Properties Australia Ltd.
Sadly this was the end for the grand old building, its replacement a modern but rather bland office building, which, other than its prominent location, is virtually indistinguishable from others lining what was once Melbourne's grand boulevard of mansions.
A building of similar design was later built on St. Kilda Road to the south and subsequently the two were joined by a glass atrium featuring shops and food outlets. The original white facade is now a very dark grey with some white under the windows
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