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Visit Forensics - Rest in Silence

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by Nadine Cresswell-Myatt (subscribe)
Freelance writer exploring Melbourne and beyond. If you enjoy the following article click on the Like button, Facebook it to your friends or subscribe. I'll update you with yummy and often free events. Like my photos? I instagram @redbagwilltravel
Published March 19th 2014
A 4am experience in a night of experiences
Image Facebook VIFM Forensic Odontologist Richard Bassed pictured in a lab at the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine. Richard checks dental records to help in identification of deceased, assessment of dental injuries and bite marks.


This may not be everyone's cup of tea, especially not at 4am in the morning.

But a lot of people do have a morbid fascination with morgues. And going there in the dead of night seems to add to the eerie sensation.

The 24 Hour Experience, which is an innovate concept to be held on Sunday March 30, allows people to visit 24 city venues over 24 hours and at each they view some kind of performance. In other words there is one every hour.

The Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine at Southbank is one of those venues.

For most people this is the first (and hopefully the last) time they be inside this sterile place where post-mortems on the roughly 2500 unexpected deaths occur each year.

And of course, a lot of these deaths happen at night.

The Forensic Medical Centre helps to provide the justice system with evidence to ensure safe convictions and of course conversely, acquittals.

Actual staff will perform a short play in an autopsy room which is usually off limits to the public.

While you won't get to see a dead body (that would be a bit much after all) you will get to see the room and find out more about what goes on there.

You will watch from the glassed off viewing area where police sit during post-mortems and hear from actual forensic pathologist David Ranson and his team which includes technicians and counsellors.

They will tell it like it is. Their performance involves the sudden death of a person, how they contact that person's family, and issues surrounding the donation of tissues such as bone, skin and corneas. These are incredibly important concerns.

In another room, the staff will answer questions on their work and what happens to bodies after death.

This event is only available to those who have bought either a 24 hour pass or a $60 four-hour pass.

So while you are out and about at that time in the morning you might as well try some of the other "unusual" events.

Beforehand at 3am at the Federation Square atrium, a former stripper talks about her taken on her former employment.

And at 7am under Princes Bridge you will find makeshift beds where you can have a bit of a rest and listen to audio stories from real-life homeless people.

Given the wild night you have had passers-by are likely to find you asleep there the next morning.

You can buy tickets for this unusual event here.

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Why? To see the darker side of Melbourne
When: Sunday March 30 4am
Where: 57-83 Kavanagh St Southbank
Cost: $60
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