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Wedding Day : Leslie Wain married Joyce Bagley in October 1924

Leslie ('Let') Wain

Les (also known as ‘Let’) Wain was the blacksmith in Chiltern. Born in 1892 to father Thomas and mother Mary (nee Lynch), he married Joyce Bagley in October 1924, and in 1932 purchased 24 Oxford Street, Chiltern as their home.

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Leslie Wain (Blacksmith) phone number was simply '53'.

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Staff outside the premises of Wain & Hyland Blacksmiths and Engineering. The building still exists behind Stephenson's Motor Garage on Conness Street.

They lived there until Joyce’s death in 1966, at which time Les moved to Melbourne to live with his daughter Valda (and her husband, John Hayes) and their two daughters (Les’ grand-daughters) Jenni & Maxine. Les returned briefly to Chiltern for Christmas in 1967 and at this point sold it for $1,100 to Robert & Grace DePiazza. At this point, sometime in 1967, the house was painted for the first time.


Leslie died in February 1970, aged 78.

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Leslie’s father Thomas was an established businessman in Chiltern. He was the local Justice of the Peace (JP) and lived nearby on Albert Road. After serving his term as a blacksmith he went to Albury and was employed by the Lampitts, who had a foundry business, and it was he who made the spiked iron gates and fences at the courthouse and offices in Dean Street, Albury, as well as the iron gates at Mates old store in Townsend Street.

Eventually he migrated to Sydney, where he was employed by Triggs and Mair, and while there received word that he could acquire the business of James Moore and Son, then in the hands of James Moore Jnr, at Conness Street, Chiltern. After putting the proposition to Mr John Hyland, who was also working in Sydney, the two young men entered into a partnership under the style of Wain and Hyland in the year 1884, and assumed control of the large business at which they had both worked as apprentices. Thomas died on 11th April 1939.

Later the business took over the firm of the late D.J. Miller, wheelwright and coach builder. The firm flourished and became famous as the manufacturer of ploughs and vineyard implements, for which it won prizes in district shows.

Mr Wain's services were greatly sought after, especially by mining companies, and eventually the firm manufactured machinery for the big mines when the industry was at its zenith in the district. The business was noted for its boring and had large contracts for putting down bores at the deep alluvial mines.

Examples of spanners made at Wain & Hyland

The partnership continued until 1921, when Mr Hyland retired from it and Mr Wain took into partnership his son Leslie. Some years later he purchased Chiltern Motor Works located nearby on Conness Street (now Stephenson’s Motors), which had been established by Mr King, and he took another of his sons, Alexander, an engineer, into the partnership. Eventually he disposed of that business to Faller and Bogetti.

About 18 months later he retired from business owing to ill health, and the plant was handed over to his son, Leslie (around 1937, while residing here at 24 Oxford Street).

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Wain & Hyland


Conness Street,

Chiltern,  May 17, 1917 

To whom it may concern

This is to certify that Walter Smith has been in our employ for upward of three years and we have found him strictly honest, tidy and attentive. We have known him from childhood. A desire to better his position prompted him to leave us.

Wain & Hyland

A transcript (above) of a reference for a former employee, by Wain & Hyland (left)

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