Ian Armstrong OAM JP (1949-60)

After attending Trinity, Ian Armstrong studied Commerce at the University of Melbourne, and captained the Melbourne University Gymnastics team, which broke many records.

Post-university, Ian’s career, like his collections, has been eclectic and multi-faceted. Starting in his family’s shoe business, he became a prominent figure in footwear retailing. Ian also found success as an actor, playing Mulga Bill in the critically-acclaimed film ‘Banjo’s Australia’. Furthermore, he is a prominent penny farthing cyclist, a Poll Hereford stud farmer, a dedicated and multi-awarded member of Rotary and Apex, the creator of two successful antique businesses, and a Justice of the Peace since 1982.

It is, however, in his role as ‘Australia’s greatest collector’ that Ian has received significant community recognition and for which he was awarded the E W Cole Award. He is the owner of the Armstrong Collection, which has a huge number of treasures (including the “Charlotte” medal created by a convict in 1788 outside Botany Bay) and thousands of significant artefacts. Ian has very generously supported Trinity by loaning many items to the School for display in the Tudor Centre.

Ian is a highly respected valuer of museum collections and other collectibles. In 1988 (the bicentenary year), he was recognised as Victorian of the Year, and in 1990, Ian received the Medal of the Order of Australia for his significant contribution to Australian culture and heritage.