Rural City of Wangaratta
Ned Kelly had begun his colourful career at odds with the law when, as a lad of 16 years, he became a guest of the Crown in the lockup at Greta (now Greta West). The original Greta Police lockup was first relocated from Greta to the old Glenrowen (original spelling) township police station in 1879. It was moved to the Glenrowan Siege Street Police Station (decommissioned in 2000), when it was built around 1885.
There is an evocative, ironic symmetry about these historic circumstances that is heightened by the lockup’s eventual relocation to this precinct, within 15 metres from where he was finally brought down by Sgt. Steele’s shotgun, 9 years after his first confinement in the Greta Lockup.
Thie late C19 lockup pictured, stands in the exact position the Greta lockup did when it was situated in Glenrowan. It is exactly contemporary and almost identical to the one in which Ned was locked in at Greta. The lockup floor and walls consist of horizontal (floor) and vertical (walls) ¾ inch iron bars cladded on the inside surfaces with flush jointed timber planks, the outside with 8 x 1 inch weatherboards. The photograph shows the vertical iron bars passing through the ventilation vents, and the floor iron bars ends protruding at floor level immediately below the cell door. These types of cells were prefabricated in England and shipped to Australia for assembly in the colony. The laminate type of construction made it impossible for any person outside or inside the cell to breach security of confinement.
(Text: adapted from Linton Briggs/ Glenrowan Improvers)
See the section below for specific information about each image.
This photograph shows the lockup's interior, note the ventilation shaft.