The Government soon found the new University rather too expensive for its liking and in their reluctance to find the necessary funds to establish a medical school they had the support of conservative members of Victoria’s medical profession. Nevertheless the relentless pressure from Council members and other sections of the community bore fruit in 1862 when funds where found for a building and George Britton Halford MD (Professor of Medicine at the Grosvenor Place School of Medicine, London) was appointed first professor of Anatomy, Physiology and Pathology, a figure at times drawn to public controversy. He was joined by a staff of six lecturers. Classes in the first medical school established in Australia commenced in 1863. The Faculty of Medicine was formally constituted in 1876.
The new building for Medicine designed by Reed & Barnes on crown lands across the lake north east of the main buildings (approximately where the Physics School stands today) was completed expeditiously.
A building in the style of a Palladian villa, its remote location was partly a function of the need for students of pathology to dissect cadavers, and possibly a ploy by the Council to lay claim to a larger area of crown land than actually allocated at that time.
In 1877 this building was extended on the north side to accommodate the expanding chemistry program and to the south for anatomy and biochemistry.