Ray Edebone







About Ray Edenbone

Ray Edebone joined William Angliss Institute in 1982, and during his 21 year career was responsible for running many different areas within the college. Originally hired as a controller tasked to deal with maintenance, cleaning and central stores, his job expanded once the college and the hospitality industry began to expand and grow. 

Ray’s main tasks involved managing food orders for all classes, and was charged with computerising orders into a single system that was streamlined, co-ordinated and delivered with greater ease.

When we first got there in 1982, everything was written by hand, there was nothing on computers. And one of my roles was installing a computer system, which covered all the food purchases and storage, kitchen operations and front office operations. Then I also had to write up the workshop manuals so the teachers knew how to place their orders on the computers.

For about three years Ray co-ordinated Institute events and functions, where students served and prepared the food. He remembers being responsible for organising a launch party for the Labor Party, held in one of the restaurants.

When Paul Keating wanted to launch his Working Nation to Australia they chose William Angliss Institute, and I had to co-ordinate the front office part, the coaching side of it. … Paul Keating came and all members of the Labor Party were here. Joan Kirner was here, she was the Premier of the time, and Paul Keating was the Prime Minister… and we had a wonderful day.

Ray became more involved with marketing and consultation, and travelled to shopping centres and regional areas to promote food training courses and programs for food handling and management. He was also involved in designing, implementing and co-ordinating the Dive Management Course, a seminal program which focused on and combined diving skills, hotel and tourist management and included modules on marine and boating studies. The program was expanded Australia-wide, and included experiences on island resorts and cruise ships, and was adopted by other institutes and schools, going on to win accolades and the Victorian Award for Innovation.

Some highlights of Ray’s long career with the Institute include working with the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival:…they used to come to us and ask if we could help, and for a couple of years we used to [use] the City Circle Trams. Chefs from different restaurants around Melbourne would come to our school and prepare food from their restaurants; put it on trays and then our students would get on trams and hand all the food out to the tram customers … And we had the top restaurants in Melbourne come to the college and they’d prepare their own staff and worked with our apprentices and do all the food preparation, and they used to go off for two weeks each year, and that was a wonderful setup. We used to bake cakes for the launch of the Food and Wine Festival, where we’d go up to Parliament House and have this beautiful big cake presented to the Premier.

Ray also remembers how the horror of the Ash Wednesday Fires in 1983 drove the whole college to pull together to prepare meals for all those affected: George Hill [managing chef] got all the students and teachers together and we made about 3000 meals on the first day to send up to the Salvation Army so they could hand it all out to all the victims.

Ray has fond memories of his time at William Angliss, and he talks wistfully about the friendly interaction with staff, teachers and students, and how he enjoyed being a big part of the administration of programs and events.

Summary of the Interview

Interviewer: Jill Adams
Interviewee: Ray Edebone
Date of Recording: 03/03/2011
Recording Format: MP3          



Key Words


WAI Central Stores

  • Worked at WAI (started in 1982) for 21 years
  • first employed as a controller (operating central stores, maintenance & cleaning)
  • Worked mainly in central stores for 12 years
  • Involved dealing with all food products that came in for all classes, 30 chef teachers,  15 bakery teachers, 12 butchery teachers which put in requests and all orders were co-ordinated and delivered
  • Involved in computerising everything into a single system so that orders could be placed and streamlined
  • Restaurants covered to include all food and wines served, enabling a daily evaluation and costing
  • Early days of coping with computer problems and “teething errors”, upgrades and technology
Controller; Central Stores; maintenance; cleaning; food products; chef; bakery; butchery; class requirements; computerised system; food purchasing & storage; kitchen operations; front office operations; work-sub manuals; restaurants operations; wine; service; daily balance; power surges; upgrade;     



  • Different sections under one job description that grew into a vast job, had to be split up
  • Working relationship with management was strained at times; so if there were problems it was at times difficult find understanding or common ground with managers, who had differing ideas
Repairs; refrigeration; teaching staff; support staff; management;


Time of growth and expansion

  • Teachers encouraged competition participation in students, new areas and ideas that were included and focused on
  • Growth of hospitality industry created intense competition between schools and training centres
  • Government funding disputes
Competitions; Culinary Skills Olympics; baking; pastry; sugar work; ice carving; cake decorating; Hospitality industry; apprentice cooks; hotels; tender; government funding; trainers;


Facilities/Functions Manager

  • Looked after facilities and charged with promoting events, big event when PM Paul Keating launched ‘Working Nation’ in restaurant
  • Students served and prepared the food for all functions, and received recognition and were presented to applause
  • All kinds of events were held, very popular
  • Did this job for about 3 years
Functions area; facilities rentals; weddings; seminars; bar mitzvahs; Prime Minister Paul Keating; ‘Working Nation’ Launch; catering; Labor Party; Joan Kirner; Premiere; Col Caneen; Jewish; conferences;


Marketing and Consultation

  • Towards end of employment, more involved in consultation; went out to shopping centres and regional areas to promote food training courses/programs for food handling
Dive Management Course

  • Diving and hotel/tourist management program co-ordinated; marine studies/boat studies modules included
  • Organised the admin. side of the programs/courses, expanded to include Australia-wide program with resorts, islands
  • Other institutes/schools took on programs
  • Won Victorian Award for Innovation
  • Had to retire early because of fits induced by medication, unable to dive again
  • Taken over and spa course included
Dive Management; Consultancy; Highpoint; food handling; Hygiene for food handlers; customer service; Horsham; resorts; wet season; Jeff Mackleroy; Hotel Management; Tourism Management; Marine Studies, Marine Studies Centre; Queenscliff; boat handling; navigation; safety; TAFE; advertise; book facilities; student records; Whitsundays; Hayman Island; South Mile Island; boat charters; HR; working conditions; salaries; equipment; cruise; Queensland; Gold Coast; Western Australia; South Australia; Sydney; Olympic Games; Win Scott; Victorian Training Award for innovation; retiring age; Alpine Resort; ski & snow fields;


Other roles

  • On council as non-teaching staff representative, in charge of circulating information around, President of Union
Meat Sales

  • Organised cuts of meat from abattoirs and butcheries for students each week, and once meat was cut then had to find a way to price and distribute meat. The shop, phone orders and to University Meats Butchers; people took advantage of system and some underhanded practices were occurring
Council; President of Union; meat sales; abattoirs; butchery; tender; set program; lamb; calves; veal; hind-quarters; beef; central stores; The Shop; University Meats; stock control;


Career Highlights

  • Dive Management Program
  • Putting in the Stock Control System with Central Stores
Working with the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival

  • Would work with other restaurants to give out food, bake cakes for launch of festival
  • Early days of festival beginnings
Great Chefs Program

  • Would come over from Italy and around, put on meals for public that apprentices would prepare for and serve
Hire of the College Facilities

  • Involved in organising industry launches of hospitality products
Melbourne Food and Wine Festival; City Circle trams; trays; Cadbury; chocolate; food preparation; cakes; Parliament House; Great Chefs Program; Italy; industry; launch of new products; equipment & seating;


Proposal for Cruise/ship Hospitality Training

  • Ship arrival delayed and course diverted to Hastings for a few years
  • Late 1990s Cruise Tourism Program
Ship; boat training; Brisbane; Germany; South Africa; Moored; Hastings; Western Port; Cruise tourism; Hotel Management; cruise lines; Chris Coates; Wayne Crosby;


Issues faced during employment

  • Union member, issues with management resolved
  • Computer systems upgrade disputed as unnecessary, which seemed to create more work, worries and waste money
  • Meat sales discrepancies, management didn’t deal with it properly
  • Upfront, honest approach wasn’t always appreciated by upper levels or management
  • Change of job and responsibilities
Union member; management; non-teaching  staff; college councillor; stores controller; meat sales; leg of lamb; beef steaks; Chairmen of College Council; Margaret Gosh; Ireland; hospitality area;


Hiring of Facilities

  • Weddings held in restaurant at much cheaper price than other places
Short Courses and Competitions

  • There were more available around
  • disappearance of skills (sugar shaping, ice carving)
  • open to public and widely promoted, not so highly regarded anymore or marketed
  • Competitions not promoted or encouraged anymore, top professionals would teach and work here
  • Market change, where has the innovation gone?
Weddings; restaurants; seminars; short course programs; bread making; croissant making; cake decorating; quality food production; six months, one night a week; sugar shaping; ice carving; Australian Cake Decorating Champion; Johnny Miller; George Hill; Ray Tormby; industry fragmentation; consumer; waiting staff; orders; sauces; Graham Dodson; Elaine Chambers; Katy McGee; The Age; dried apricots; sultanas; currants; raisins;


Ash Wednesday Fires 1983

  • William Angliss became together to organise and prepare food for victims
  • Made about 3000 meals to give to Salvation Army
Ash Wednesday bushfires; Bendigo; Woodend; Macedon; radio request; fruits; vegetables; food donations; George Hill; Salvation Army; Cheese; Latrobe Street;


Diploma Classes

  • Singapore; visited army operations, airports, hotels and colleges to see how things were prepared, a unique behind-the-scenes look at how things worked in a different country (cultural differences, different kitchens for preparations)
  • Diving Programs; resorts, cruise ships
  • Regional Victoria and industries; training programs developed to cater for different areas
Diploma Classes; Singapore; Stamford Hotel; army & military operations; Muslim; Hindu; separate kitchens; Parliament House; Canberra; Whitsundays; Dive management course; Regional Victoria; consultancy; training programs for industry; government funding;


Retirement & Life after WAI


Interview Concludes



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