Heritage Guide to The Geelong College

Search the Guide

To find information in this Guide please select one of the green coloured options.

To Select a Page Group when displayed, right click and select 'Open'.

Copyright Conditions Apply.

BATE, Weston Arthur OAM (1924-2017)

BATE, Professor Weston Arthur OAM (1924-2017)

Weston Arthur Bate, widely respected and dynamic, local historian and author, served on the Geelong College Council for 10 years from 1981 to 1991. He was also a Council Member of St Catherine's School, Toorak.

Born at Mont Albert, Melbourne he attended Surrey Hills Primary School before entering Scotch College, Melbourne. After leaving Scotch he enlisted in the RAAF in 1943. Determining to become a teacher when he returned to Australia he entered Ormond College to complete a BA. He began teaching at Brighton Grammar School in 1949 and it is while here that he wrote his first local history, 'A History of Brighton' which, with its vivid writing and deeply diverse research, established his reputation. He later taught at Melbourne Grammar, Melbourne University and Bradfield College, Berkshire before returning to Melbourne University in 1965 to teach Australian History where he became Reader, then History Department Head. In 1978, he became foundation Professor of Australian Studies at Deakin University.

With his appointment at Deakin, there began his close association with Geelong which was eventually to lead to his writing in 'retirement' of histories of Geelong Grammar, 'Light Blue Down under' and of the Barwon Head Golf Club, 'Heads You Win (2007)' .

Throughout his life he championed the cause of local and cultural history, publishing 16 major histories, supporting local historical societies, and actively campaigning for protection of Victoria's heritage. Among his many community affiliations, he was a member of the Royal Historical Society of Victoria (RHSV) Council from 1990 to 2005, its President from 2002-2005, Chair of the Museums Advisory Board, and a patron of the Maritime Museums Association.

Weston Bate died on 31 October 2017.

Sources: Bendigo Advertiser 2 November 2017; 'Inspiring Trailblazer of Local History' by Professor Richard Broome, Sydney Morning Herald 8 December 2017; The Courier (Ballarat) 2 November 2017; Ad Astra December 2018 p61.
© The Geelong College. Unless otherwise attributed, The Geelong College asserts its creative and commercial rights over all images and text used in this publication. No images or text material may be copied, reproduced or published without the written authorisation of The College.