Alternative Name(s): Share Certificate
Unissued Founder's Share certificate certificate No.153 for The Colonial Gas Association Limited. The Colonial Gas Association Limited was incorporated on 3rd February 1888, with a nominal capital of £250,000 made up of 49,880 £5 shares, and 60 Founders Shares of £10 each. Printed by Jas Truscott & Son, London.

The Colonial Gas Association was originally formed in London on 2 February 1888, as The Australasian Gas Association Limited. The primary objective of the company was to provide investment capital to help finance the construction and management of gasworks being established by the London engineering firm John Coates & Co in metropolitan cities and regional towns throughout Australia and New Zealand. The local Melbourne-based directors of the association were engineer, John Coates (1845-1914), politician and land speculator, Thomas Bent (1838-1909), and electrical engineer and machinery importer, Edward Noyes (1859-1920). George Swinburne (1861-1928), a nephew of John Coates and later a member of the Board of Trustees of the Melbourne Public Library, Museums & National Gallery, was appointed as Manager and later Superintendent of the Association's operations in Australia. He was to work tirelessly for the next 25 years winning gas supply concessions and contracts from numerous local councils and managing the day to day business of the company, eventually becoming Managing Director and later Chairman of Directors.

By 1890, the Australasian Gas Association had acquired gasworks at Benalla, Shepparton, Wangaratta, Warragul, Maldon and Seymour, and had constructed a large gasworks at Box Hill to supply the eastern suburbs of Melbourne. In 1893, the company's name was changed to the Colonial Gas Association Limited. During the 1890s, the company acquired regional gasworks in Queensland, Western Australia and South Australia, followed by its first gasworks in New South Wales, in 1911. In 1914, the company consolidated its metropolitan supply area by purchasing the Oakleigh and Footscray gasworks. Further expansion occurred in the 1920s with the purchase of established gasworks at Williamstown, Frankston and Dandenong and the acquisition of ten further gas undertakings in Queensland and New South Wales, making the firm the fifth largest gas producer in Australia. The Colonial Gas Association's principal gas production facility at Box Hill was closed following the introduction of natural gas supplies from Bass Strait in 1969 and by 1973 all its remaining assets in Melbourne and regional Victorian towns had been acquired by the Government-owned Gas & Fuel Corporation of Victoria.

Obverse Description

Unissued, cream paper, printed on obverse in black ink, with a red stamp across the centre of the certificate.

More Information

  • Collecting Areas

    Engineering, Public Life & Institutions, Numismatics & Philately

  • Acquisition Information


  • Issued By

    The Colonial Gas Association Limited, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, circa 1893

  • Inscriptions

    Text: No. 153/ The Colonial Gas Association Limited,/ INCORPORATED 3RD FEBRUARY 1888./ CAPITAL L250,000,/ IN 49,880 SHARES OF FIVE POUNDS EACH,/ AND 60 FOUNDERS SHARES OF L10 EACH./ This is to Certify that.../ of... is the Proprietor/ of...Share of FIVE POUND each, with L...,...,...per Share paid both inclusive in THE COLONIAL GAS ASSOCIATION LIMITED,/ subject to the Regulations of the Company./ Given under the Common Seal of the Company/ of...189.../ ...SECRETARY./ ...DIRECTORS./ No Transfer of the above Shares will be registered unless accompanied by this Certificate.

  • Classification

    Energy technology, Gas power, Share scrip

  • Category

    History & Technology

  • Discipline


  • Type of item


  • Object Dimensions

    255 mm (Width), 209 mm (Height)

  • Shape


  • References

    Proudley, Ray, 'Circle of Influence - A History of the Gas Industry in Victoria', Hargreen Publishing Co in association with Gas & Fuel Corporation of Victoria, 1987. Australian Dictionary of Biography Online Edition, Swinburne, George (1861-1928), [Link 1] accessed 20/09/2010. Australian Dictionary of Biography Online Edition, Hunt, Philip Charles Holmes (1874-1941), [Link 2] accessed 20/09/2010.

  • Keywords

    Coal Gas, Financial Services, Gas Distribution, Gas Manufacturing, Share Certificates