Local Orange resident turns 100 on the eve of the Census centenary

3 August 2011 | NSW/103

The 16th Census of Population and Housing is coming up on Tuesday, 9 August and marks 100 years of national Census taking in Australia - a major milestone in Census and Australian history.

The first Census was conducted in 1911, the same year long term Orange resident Marjorie Martin was born. Mrs Martin will be celebrating her 100th birthday on the eve of Census night.

Born on 8 August 1911 in Hillston, where she played the pianola during the silent movie era at the family owned Globe Theatre, Mrs Martin moved to Orange in 1937.

"Shortly after marrying my husband Ron Martin, who was a flight engineer on spitfires with the Air Force, we came to Orange and have lived here ever since," Mrs Martin says.

"I still have family living nearby in Orange. My daughter Wendy Miller and granddaughter Belinda Griffiths also live in Orange."

In 1911, 42% of Australia's population were living in rural areas compared to only 12% of Australians in 2006. Having spent over 70 years in Orange, Mrs Martin has witnessed a lot of the changes that have taken place since then.

"I love going for Sunday drives with my daughter and granddaughter. Orange is becoming quite cosmopolitan.

"I'll definitely be making sure that they help me complete my Census form and ensure that I am included in the count," Mrs Martin adds.

40 Census Collectors have been pounding the streets of Orange since Friday 29 July, delivering Census forms to every house, farm and caravan park ahead of Census night on Tuesday, 9 August.

For more information visit www.abs.gov.au/census or call 1300 338 776