Pleasant Hill opens

In April 1948, trouser production began at the 'Pleasant Hill' factory in war surplus buildings moved from Darley camp near Bacchus Marsh.  It was Teddy Baker, FJ's friend, who christened the factory and its site Pleasant Hill in 1948 and the name stuck.    "Great was his foresight and his faith in us.  It was still not a pleasant site but it grew to be so.  Perhaps the name inspired us to make it into that 'that factory in Warrnambool with the lovely garden where they make trousers" said Fletcher Jones in his autobiography Not by Myself, published in 1976. 

FJ seems to have often found a creative solution to a problem encountered and he was said to have "shown commendable initiative in buying disposals properties" to counteract the shortage of building materials in this post war era. 

FJ commissioned local architect Tag Walter for a facade for the buildings that were formerly a camp post office, canteen units, hospital buildings, a mess hut and fumigation hut.  Other buildings were added over time, including a Quonset hut transported from Milne Bay in PNG that would become the Dry Cleaning, Reforming and Repairs department at Pleasant Hill.  

At this time, FJ & Staff Pty Ltd employed 120 staff and daily production was 253 pairs of trousers.  

Opening of Pleasant Hill Factory 1948.  Photo: Jones Family Collection
Newspaper article - source unknown.  Collected during the FJ Stories Project.
First staff canteen also opened in 1948.  Photo: Jones Family Collection
Pleasant Hill factory in 1948.  Photo: Jones Family Collection
The opening day cake modelled on the Pleasant Hill Factory!  Photo: Jones Family Collection
FJ looking happy at the opening of Pleasant Hill Factory 1948.  Photo: Jones Family Collection
View of the Pleasant Hill site in 1948. Photo: Jones Family Collection
In June 1948, the Pleasant Hill Foundation Stone was laid by Hon. J.J.Dedman, M.H.R.Photo: Jones Family Collection  
Opening of Pleasant Hill Factory 1948.  Photo: Jones Family Collection
Sewing room at the newly opened Pleasant Hill factory in1948 - at this time FJs was making only trousers and production in 1948 was 253 pairs a day! Photo: Jones Family Collection
View of Pleasant Hill Factory, 1948. Photo: Jones Family Collection
Teddy Baker, FJ's friend who christened the factory and its site Pleasant Hill in 1948.  Photo:Jones Family Collection
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