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2018 has been a big year for the team at Twisted History!

And we could not have done it without our customers who come week in and week out to our range of tours across Victoria.

In November we were extremely proud to take away the bronze award for Cultural Tourism in the Victorian RACV Tourism Awards.

We continued to be accredited for the third year, one of only 2 “ghost” tour companies in Australia.  This means we maintain a business standard that allows as to use the national tick.

2019 will see the introduction of at least one new tour with the Castlemaine Cemetery tour beginning in mid January with our miner Andrew O’Reilly and schoolteacher, Miss Myrtle!

We have already locked in a range of dates for our haunted hotel tours, with negotiations continuing with a couple more.

Our murder tours will see Chinatown take on a more “ghostly” focus and will see the introduction of a new guide.  Carlton and Melbourne tours will continue as required.

Geelong Gaol will be back with a ghost tour and an investigtion tour tomorrow night (26/12).  We have a new longer investigation planned for later in the first half of the year.  We will also be expecting some special interstate guests around Easter – now to find a cool location to investigate near Geelong!

Besides all this, with our newly vamped website up and running, we are hoping to bring back our regular blog – not daily unfortunately as we have been too busy!  But we will have some new content up in the new year!

But thats enough from me for now!

So the team at Twisted History would like to wish each and every one of you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.  We hope to see you somewhere on a tour in 2019!

ON THIS DAY – FEBRUARY 21, 2002

Former jeweller Slawomir Tomczyk had been desperate to find another job since joining a security firm in the outer eastern suburbs four months earlier. Tomczyk was murdered as he completed his nightly rounds of business premises on this day in 2002. His body was found in the grounds of the Casablanca Reception Centre in Cranbourne at 2am by his boss, Sandy Sempel, who became concerned when Mr Tomczyk failed to check in at midnight. “It is shocking. You never want to find your workmates like this. He was a reliable worker. Who expects to go to work and get killed?” Mr Sempel said. Tomczyk was ambushed at the front of the premises, dragged down a side driveway and left to die. Police were shocked at the brutality of the murder and believe the killers attacked the 44-year-old Polish immigrant some time after 10pm and were not trying to break into the reception centre. “He’s like anyone else, he’s out there earning a living, he’s trying to protect the community,” said Detective Senior Sergeant Ron Iddles of the homicide squad. “He’s unarmed and it’s been a very, very vicious attack, cold, calculating and very cruel.” Tomczyk’s car was found a short time later in nearby Clyde North, on Thompson’s Road near the intersection of Berwick-Cranbourne Road. Tomczyk took the security job to support himself and his elderly mother after being retrenched from his job as a jeweller in Endeavour Hills. His neighbours in Berwick said he did not like security work, and had been looking for another job. “He was a very gentle sort of a guy. He didn’t like the hours, and wasn’t really all that cut out for it,” said Victoria Poulos, who lives next to the Tomczyk home. “He was friendly to everyone and seemed to enjoy life. He used to like playing ABBA records and having friends over.” Tomczyk’s mother arrived in Australia from Poland at Christmas to visit her son.

 

 

On this day …… 29th January 1932

The Lady Loch has set of on her quarterly round of the Victorian and Tasmanian lighthouses. To tho children living in these Isolated areas she is known as the Santa Claus ship. At this time of the year there is something more than household stores on hoard. Books, dolls, beads, almonds and raisins, and a variety of toys form part of the cargo. More than 80 children will participate in the pleasure of receiving these gifts, which have been Bent from Victoria, so that, in their Isolation, they will not be cheated of the pleasure of receiving some thing from Santa Claus. Through the enthusiasm of Miss Alice, Orrong Road, Elsternwick, a consignment of good has been forwarded as Christmas gifts to the lighthouse children for the last eight years. This time parcels of fancy work have been included,’ so that the mothers will not feel neglected. Eager eyes will scan tho horizon for a first glimpse of the Santa Claus ship long before the Lady Loch ls due. It will not be long before the children at Cape Otway and Gabo Island will be opening their, parcels, but the bairns in the lonely spots along the Tasmanian coast will still have to bide a week.

On this day …….. 27th of December 1914

Mr Alexander Henderson, 73 years of age, the oldest resident of Glenora, has met his death in peculiar circumstances. He spent Christmas with his nephew, Mr Malcolm M’Lean, and left for his home some two miles, distant shortly after 6 pm on the 27th of December. On December 29th Mr Henderson’s hat and a parcel were found on a lonely road hear the State school. Search parties were organised, and in the afternoon Mr. Henderson was found entangled in a wire fence, and unconscious. He had been in that position for about 50 hours. It is assumed that he was overcome by sudden weakness, and unable to extricate himself from the wire. He was removed to his home and given medical attention, but died early following morning.

 

On this day …….. 27th of December 1832

On the 27th of December 1832, Charlotte Welsh, a convict woman working as a servant in a Sydney house, was sent to the female workhouse for six weeks for being insolent to her mistress. She had complained that her Christmas pudding had no brandy in it.

 

On this day …….. 26th of December 1951

A young man has been charged with breaking into Pentridge gaol. The man was discovered about midday on the 26th of December 1951, in a building In the reformatory section of the gaol. He told warders he was familiar with the layout of the building, because he had recently served a long term there. Early this morning he had climbed over a 20 foot wall surrounding the gaol, and spent the morning distributing Christmas gifts of tobacco and cigarettes to his friends.

 

On this day …….. 25th of December 1916

An aggressive tiger snake which attacked Private Frederick Thoroughgood, a soldier who had been invalided home deaf and dumb from Gallipoli, was the means of his regaining both his speech and hearing. Private Thoroughgood, who since his return has been an inmate of the Camberwell Convalescent Home, Mont Albert-road, attended a picnic at Warrandyte on Christmas day. While walking through the bush he almost trod on the snake, which immediately showed fight, and Thoroughgood, after a short encounter, despatched the reptile with a stick. The affray excited Thoroughgood somewhat, and a little later his companions were surprised to hear him commence whistling. Shortly afterwards he asked in a normal voice, “Well, what’s the next item on the programme ?” Speech and hearing came to him, simultaneously, being doubtless the best Christmas box that he could have desired.

 

On this day …….. 24th of December 1938

Australia hosts the first ever Carols by Candlelight on this day in 1938.

Carols by Candlelight is a popular Australian Christmas tradition. Communities gather together in parks or churchyards to sing carols and Christmas songs on any given evening in the lead-up to Christmas. There is often extra entertainment during these events, with skits, plays and other performers, and participants may hold candles or other electric lights to enhance the festive atmosphere. The concept of Carols by Candlelight was born in 1937 when radio veteran Norman Banks was on his way home after a late evening shift. Walking along St Kilda Road, Melbourne, he saw a woman through the window of her home, her face reflecting the soft glow of candlelight, singing to Away in a Manger as it played on the radio. The sight inspired Banks to create an event which could be enjoyed by many, and which would reflect both the reverence and the joy of Christmas. With the support of his employers and the Melbourne City Council, particularly Lord Mayor AW Coles, Banks organised a programme for the following year. The first Carols by Candlelight took place in Melbourne, Australia on Christmas Eve, 24th of December 1938. Approximately ten thousand people came together at midnight in Alexandra Gardens to sing carols, backed by a choir, two soloists and the Metropolitan Fire Brigade Band. A larger production was organised the following year, and the tradition grew, continuing even through World War II. Since that time, Carols by Candlelight events have spread, continuing to be organised throughout the nation, with some sponsored by major organisations, and others quieter affairs in churches and community centres.

 

ON THIS DAY – FEBRUARY 21, 2002

Former jeweller Slawomir Tomczyk had been desperate to find another job since joining a security firm in the outer eastern suburbs four months earlier. Tomczyk was murdered as he completed his nightly rounds of business premises on this day in 2002. His body was found in the grounds of the Casablanca Reception Centre in Cranbourne at 2am by his boss, Sandy Sempel, who became concerned when Mr Tomczyk failed to check in at midnight. “It is shocking. You never want to find your workmates like this. He was a reliable worker. Who expects to go to work and get killed?” Mr Sempel said. Tomczyk was ambushed at the front of the premises, dragged down a side driveway and left to die. Police were shocked at the brutality of the murder and believe the killers attacked the 44-year-old Polish immigrant some time after 10pm and were not trying to break into the reception centre. “He’s like anyone else, he’s out there earning a living, he’s trying to protect the community,” said Detective Senior Sergeant Ron Iddles of the homicide squad. “He’s unarmed and it’s been a very, very vicious attack, cold, calculating and very cruel.” Tomczyk’s car was found a short time later in nearby Clyde North, on Thompson’s Road near the intersection of Berwick-Cranbourne Road. Tomczyk took the security job to support himself and his elderly mother after being retrenched from his job as a jeweller in Endeavour Hills. His neighbours in Berwick said he did not like security work, and had been looking for another job. “He was a very gentle sort of a guy. He didn’t like the hours, and wasn’t really all that cut out for it,” said Victoria Poulos, who lives next to the Tomczyk home. “He was friendly to everyone and seemed to enjoy life. He used to like playing ABBA records and having friends over.” Tomczyk’s mother arrived in Australia from Poland at Christmas to visit her son.

 

 

On this day …….. 27th of December 1914

Mr Alexander Henderson, 73 years of age, the oldest resident of Glenora, has met his death in peculiar circumstances. He spent Christmas with his nephew, Mr Malcolm M’Lean, and left for his home some two miles, distant shortly after 6 pm on the 27th of December. On December 29th Mr Henderson’s hat and a parcel were found on a lonely road hear the State school. Search parties were organised, and in the afternoon Mr. Henderson was found entangled in a wire fence, and unconscious. He had been in that position for about 50 hours. It is assumed that he was overcome by sudden weakness, and unable to extricate himself from the wire. He was removed to his home and given medical attention, but died early following morning.

 

On this day …….. 27th of December 1832

On the 27th of December 1832, Charlotte Welsh, a convict woman working as a servant in a Sydney house, was sent to the female workhouse for six weeks for being insolent to her mistress. She had complained that her Christmas pudding had no brandy in it.

 

On this day …….. 26th of December 1951

A young man has been charged with breaking into Pentridge gaol. The man was discovered about midday on the 26th of December 1951, in a building In the reformatory section of the gaol. He told warders he was familiar with the layout of the building, because he had recently served a long term there. Early this morning he had climbed over a 20 foot wall surrounding the gaol, and spent the morning distributing Christmas gifts of tobacco and cigarettes to his friends.