Early Days of the Diamond Creek Op Shop Charlie Milthorpe’s Store

Published Sep, 2021

Charlie Milthorpe's Store with double gable roof, to the left is the residence and to the right is the carrier business

Mr Charles Milthorpe and his family are the first known occupants of the building that now houses the Opportunity Shop on the corner of Brooks Crescent.

Charles was an orchardist with a property in Broad Gully Road who won prizes for his fruit at the Diamond Creek Horticultural Show.

After his marriage to Ellen Stone in 1893 he ran the business as a store and the office for the family carrying business. When the railway line was extended to Hurstbridge opened in 1912 they also became railway agents.

Charles Milthorpe and family 1890's in the wagon they used as a local carrier

They built a house on the eastern end of the buildings, on Hurstbridge Road, as the family home. There was a double fronted wooden shop, later demolished to make way for the creation of Brooks Crescent, making the remaining buildings a corner property.

Charles and Ellen Milthorpe's House Diamond Creek

When Charles retired from his business, the next tenants, if any, are unknown.

Charlie Milthorpe has a quiet moment on his shop verandah

After World War 2, local identity, Bill Wadeson ran an electrical repair service there and a visiting solicitor used its rooms for meeting with clients. By 1962 Robertson’s Estate Agency was on site, later followed by the Opportunity Shop.

Charles Milthorpe’s house survived until the 1960’s with the last occupant being Mrs Pym.

The shop is part of Diamond Creek’s business, family and social history. Now with the thriving Op Shop in the renovated building it will continue to serve the community with the help of its loyal volunteers.

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