A Travellerspoint blog

A day in the cells

Arrests, mugshots and padded cells


Today was the day that we got ourselves arrested, Alex for arson, Rach for possessing an illegal weapon and Rach’s parents for other such heinous crimes. We spent the morning at the Old Melbourne Gaol and were on the interactive tour where you are shown around as though you yourself are being arrested. Our arresting officer was a young blonde woman and so Alex and Rach’s dad weren’t all that fussed about it and would have willingly submitted themselves for further questioning. Stockholm syndrome aside the tour was really good and gave a real impression of what a holding prison would have been like. We were led through each section of the gaol and even locked in a cell with all the lights turned off which was a little creepy. When we were allowed to wander off by ourselves we explored the padded crazies’ cell which was weird to be in especially as it just deadened any sound that was made. The prison guard told us many juicy stories of the prison including lots of escapes and false justice. We got our mugshots taken with Rach looking particularly like a criminal (as ever).


After dragging Rach’s dad away from the prison guard we made our way over to the old prison proper although we did have to allow some time for Rach to finish chowing down her golden gaytime (an Australian delicacy). The gaol itself was absolutely huge with three floors of cells and this was only a small part of the original gaol! It took us so long to get all the way around as nearly every cell was filled with a gem of a display. Most had the stories and some gruesome death masks of the criminals who’d stayed there and others covered particular themes such as; the conditions, prison in the army, hangings and prison design. There was even an extended section on Ned Kelly and his gang of bushrangers with Alex getting to try on some armour. In one of the cells Rach got a bit freaked out as they had the actual rope used in a number of the hangings in the gaol, the hangings taking place at the far end of the prison corridor.


A couple of hours later we couldn’t take the hunger anymore and we had to give up on the gaol for fear of starvation. The four of us headed out to find a bite to eat and stumbled across the now hallowed halls of Pieface. Not sure why this franchise hasn’t made it over to the shores of the UK but it needs to sometime before we make it back home as it is amazing. We spent the rest of the daylight hours showing Rach’s parents the beautiful Shrine of Remembrance (Oh we do like to be beside the shrine!) and the Botanic Gardens (New Years in Melbourne). They were delighted by both and Rach’s dad in particular thought the Shrine was the best war memorial he’d ever seen. All-in-all a great day that would have only been improved had we been able to share in the company of the police officer that night.

Rex’s Rules of the Road

  • If you do head to Melbourne Gaol definitely check out the living history tour that goes around the Watch House. Definitely unlike anything you’ve done before!
  • Golden gaytimes are an Australian, classic choc ice that are amazing.
  • Somebody needs to start up a petition to get Pieface in the UK.

Posted by rexontheroad 23:00 Archived in Australia

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