F. Hallett & Son was founded by William Francis Hallett (known by his middle name Frank) in 1889, who spent forty years of his life in Richmond and East Melbourne.
Originally Frank worked for James McEwan of Bourke Street crafting marble fire surrounds and then he established his own business with a partner in Flinders Lane, Melbourne. The business advertised themselves as a Marble and Monumental Mason, Mantelpiece Manufacturer and supplier of marble baths, lavatory slabs, table tops, tile hearths and marble fire fenders.
From Flinders Lane, Frank set up work in Lennox Street Richmond, making bluestone kerbing and cemetery monumental work. From Lennox Street, the business moved to 140 Wellington Parade East Melbourne and then moved again in 1919 to 25 Bridge Road Richmond, where the business operated for over 70 years and three more generations of family involvement.
As a stonemason Frank did some fine work in the city and suburbs of Melbourne. A few notable examples being the entrance to Carlyons Hotel in Spencer Street, the Melbourne Mansions and the soldiers' memorial entablature at the Manchester Unity Hall, Swanston Street. F. Hallett & Son originally specialised in ecclesiastical work and crafted the altars at our Lady of Victoria Basilica in Camberwell, St. Ignatius Church in Richmond, St. Mary's Church and St. John's in Clifton Hill, amongst many other churches in Victoria.
On William Francis Hallett's death in 1926, Stanley William Hallett continued his father's legacy and became the proprieter of F. Hallett & Son for the next 16 years, carrying on the business that his father established, with pride.
The third generation of Hallett stonemasons involvement in F. Hallett & Son commenced in 1942 when Stan Hallett's third eldest son Stan (Junior) joined the firm during World War II at the young age of 15 years old. Stan senior's two eldest sons had gone to war. Felix Hallett joined the firm a year later.
On returning from the war one of Stan senior's eldest sons, Frank, also joined the firm. In 1951 Stan Senior unexpectedly passed away at the young age of 57 years, leaving three of his sons to carry on the family tradition. The company still operated out of a factory in Bridge Road, Richmond and produced many fine monuments for cemeteries, ecclesiastical work, marble floors and bathrooms for many homes in Toorak and it's surroundings. With the expansion of their client base the three Hallett stonemasons purchased acres of land in Thomastown in 1960 and constructed a second factory. At this factory they could receive large raw granite blocks from all around Australia and the world and cut these down to produce high quality stone products.
F. Hallett & Son Today
The current fourth generation direct descendant of the founder William Francis is Phil Hallett, the fourth eldest son of Felix Hallett, who joined the firm in 1980.
Phil Hallett learnt all the skills of stonemasonry from his father and uncles and continually received the top stonemason awards during his time completing his stonemasonry accreditation at trade school. Phil received a scholarship to travel to Italy as he is recognised as one of the top stonemason craftsman in Australia.
Phil still travels extensively to inspect stone quarries and continually expand his knowledge of the industry that he loves and has generations of Hallett stonemasonry blood running through his veins. He has over 37 years of stonemasonry experience and is a well respected expert in his field.
F. Hallett and Son now operates out of a factory at 27 Manton Road, Oakleigh South. Phil is very much involved in all aspects of the finished product and produces high quality monuments and gravestones for cemeteries around Victoria. Over the past 128 years F. Hallett and Son has produces thousands of monuments of a high calibre.