Round metal badge decorated with a clown design on the front with a metal pin on the back.

This badge was issued by Melbourne insurance company Manchester Unity in the 1980s to commemorate their involvement in the Melbourne Moomba Festival. It was given away as a souvenir and promotional device at various Moomba events around Melbourne. It features an updated 1980s version of the Moomba Clown logo, which was originally designed by Ronald Kirk for the first Moomba Festival in 1955.

Physical Description

Round metal badge depicting the Moomba Clown logo on the front, as well as details of the issuer of the badge. On the back is a metal pin used to secure the badge.


Statement of Significance:

This badge is significant due to its links to the Melbourne Moomba Festival, one of Melbourne's longest running festivals, is run under the auspices of the City of Melbourne. Moomba is celebrated during the Labour Day long weekend in March, and has been held annually since 1955. In 2003, the event was renamed Melbourne Moomba Waterfest, with most activities centred around the Yarra River.

It is also significant due to its links to Manchester Unity, established in Melbourne in 1840 when Augustus Greeves, a member of the Manchester Unity Independent Order of Oddfellows in England, migrated to Australia. On his arrival in Melbourne, Greeves teamed up with journalist Thomas Strode to form the first lodge `he Australia Felix Lodge'. The lodge received its Constitution on 7 December 1840 and this is recognised as the birth date of Manchester Unity in Victoria.

By the late nineteenth century, MU had an extensive network of lodges in metropolitan and country Victoria. A key feature of the governance of MU was the Annual Moveable Conference which met each year in a different centre and elected the organisation's Directors for the coming year. Women were first admitted to lodge membership in 1925. The iconic Manchester Unity building in Melbourne was opened in 1932, the tallest building in Australia at the time and the first to have escalators. During the 20th Century, MU continued to provide sickness benefits and dispensary services to its members and extended its activities into other areas, such as Manchester Unity (Victoria) Permanent Building Society, established in 1964. In 1993 Manchester Unity (Victoria) merged with the Australian Natives Association to form Australian Unity.

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