Cliff & Bunting, Melbourne

01:01PM BST - Monday, 21 April 2008

Contributed by: Michael Bunting FSG

At the Worthing family history fair, yesterday, 20th April 2008, Richard Moore gave me a mysterious envelope, addressed to me with various scribbled notes such as "@ Beaconsfield Tasmania", "Taken in haste therefore did not photo complete company name", "DO NOT FOLD" and in a circle shape "C?LIFF &  BUNTING MELBOURNE".
As I was under pressure to set up my tables due to late admission to the Worthing Pavillion I put the letter on one side as there was no clue as to who had sent the envelope. But a big thank you to them anyway! Later in the day I opened the envelope to disclose three unmarked pictures of a pithead winding gear, a simple, four wheeled  steam engine which looked as though as though it might have been used for hauling trucks of something and finally an enlargement of a wheel boss inscribed ?C? LIFF & BUNTING MEL?? Richard Moore still could not remember who had given him the envelope.
Today I put "Beaconsfield, Tasmania" into Google and bingo, up came the Wikipedia entry showing the the very picture I had been sent of the Beaconsfield mine, head winding gear at "Grub Shaft Gold and Heritage Museum". Using that title on Google I was taken to a long shot of museum building facades in front of which and only just visible, was the steam engine. By this time I was on a roll and so searched for  "Cliff & Bunting Melbourne". Two of the options I had "cliff" gave a brief history of the company on but "The  History of Cliff & Bunting", revealed the latter's full name as Johnathan Craven Bunting.
Checking the Society records for those christian names revealed that Johnathan Craven was the son of one of our more well known characters John Lantsbury Bunting and Sarah Craven. Jonathan was born in the June quarter of 1862, in Bradford, Yorks and died, aged 85yrs, 3/8/1947 in Victoria, Australia.
Now I could do with a bit of help to bring our records of Jonathan's Australian family right up to date. Beware though that from a data protection and privacy point of view you may have to content yourself by saying you have done it in this public domain and write to me separately with the detail.

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