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"Banff", located at 145 Fitzroy Street, St. Kilda was used by American soldiers for accommodation during WWII. It was then used by Australians later in the war.

There is a cafe at the front of "Banff" and it was apparently used to feed the soldiers who stayed there. At the back of each unit there is still a small trap door box which apparently was used to put the soldiers' meals in. 

Michael Yanko told me that his father, Stanley Yanko, established the Banff Cafe in 1941 and raised his family in the flats - first in flat 19 and then in flat 2, from the forties through to the early eighties. When General Douglas McArthur arrived in Melbourne in March 1942 the war after escaping the Philippines, a meal was apparently ordered for the General from the Banff Cafe at some stage during the months that his headquarters were in Melbourne. In those days there were Australian Army barracks taking up a large part of Albert Park, near St Kilda Park Primary School.

Michael Yanko grew up in the flats and recalls that they were fairly well appointed for their time - with garbage chutes, hydronic heating, heated towel rails, "Terrazzo" flooring and milk/bread delivery boxes (which may have been re-interpreted into "food boxes" for the troops).

The nearby Prince of Wales Hotel at 29 Fitzroy Street was also used by the Americans during WWII.



I'd like to thank Andrew Wilson for his assistance with this web page. Andrew lives in an apartment in "Banff". I'd also like to thank Michael Yanko for his assistance with this web page.


Can anyone help me with more information?


"Australia @ War" Research Products

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 Peter Dunn 2015


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This page first produced 11 January 2006

This page last updated 27 December 2016