The Great Ocean Road was created for Men’s Health and a tourist attraction. The Great Ocean Road is the largest war memorial built for those who died while fighting in World War I, carved in rock, it winds around the rugged southern coast of Victoria in Australia. Built by returned servicemen it was a huge engineering feat ending decades of isolation for Lorne and other coastal communities.
It was the Geelong Mayor, Alderman Howard Hitchcock, who brought the plans to fruition and reality. He formed the Great Ocean Road Trust and set about raising the money to finance the project. He saw it not only as a way of employing returned soldiers but of creating a lasting monument to those who had died in the war. Returned soldiers had a place to work and re-unite themselves with a worthy project in memory to all their lost mates and fellow soldiers.
This was a brilliant plan to restore the soldiers mental health and open up which is now a historic and scenically stunning road to all Victorian southern coastal communities. It was back-breaking work with no heavy machinery to help – only picks, shovels and horse-drawn carts. The road was completed in November 1932.
Initially the road was a toll road until it had been paid for. The toll was abolished when the Trust moved to hand over the road as a gift to the State Government on 2 October 1936.The Great Ocean Road is a number one tourist location journey in Australia. It is also the largest war memorial built in the world. Great men’s health story!
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