Town profiles

Barwon Heads

History The township of BARWON HEADS was first surveyed in 1870 but remained sparsely populated for many years. Fishing was the mainstay of the town in its early years. In the 1890’s an influx of hunters started to visit Lake Connewarre for ducks and other native birds, which saw the town swell. In the 1920s and 1930s the town became a popular holiday resort and a number of the richer families of Melbourne built houses here. The summer period today still sees a large influx…

View More »

Drysdale

History The town of DRYSDALE was named after miss anne drysdale who with her friend miss caroline newcomb owned large acreages of land in the area. Drysdale moved to the region from scotland for health reasons and went about farming in the region. The magnificent house she built from stone is named coriyule in and was built in1849. The homestead still stands today and is believed to be the oldest standing structure. It has recently been put on the market and is privately owned. Clifton…

View More »

Indented Head

History St leonards was given its name from st leonards station a pastoral farm in the area which was named after a town bearing the same name in sussex, england. Firewood became a major source of income for the towns, and today other than a few hectares of native timber close to OCEAN GROVE, there is no original bush lands on the entire peninsula. INDENTED HEAD was named by the explorer matthew flinders in 1802 when he observed the shape of the bellarine peninsula coastline…

View More »

Ocean Grove

History One of the first reports of settlement in OCEAN GROVE was in 1854 when william bonsey ran a property and established a small leather tanning business using local wattle bark as the preservative. OCEAN GROVE received its name from a town of the same name near new jersey in the united states. During the 1870’s the american methodist church set up a religious camp near new jersey and due to its success decided to set up camps overseas. They set up forces with methodists…

View More »

Point Lonsdale

History POINT LONSDALE was first discovered by european explorers in 1802. It is named after captain william lonsdale, the first police Magmistrate of port phillip. In april 1803 three convicts escaped from the newly-formed british settlement at point king .The convicts made their way around to the bellarine peninsula but starvation loomed and two of the men vanished while attempting to return. William buckley (who had been transported to australia for life in 1802 for being…

View More »

Portarlington

History PORTARLINGTON has been a holiday resort for more than 100 years, with thousands of melburnian holidaymakers taking a one-hour trip on the steamer from williamstown in the nineteenth century. The township of PORTARLINGTON was formally surveyed around 1850 and was at that time named drayton. It was renamed PORTARLINGTON in 1851, reportedly in honour of the english peer, sir henry bennet , 1st earl of arlington. Mussels are the dominant shell species found in evidence…

View More »

Queenscliff

History European explorers first arrived in Queenscliff in 1802, Lieutenant John Murray in January and Captain Matthew Flinders followed in April. The first European settler in the area was convict escapee William Buckley between 1803 and 1835, he is said to have lived in a cave beneath the Point Lonsdale Lighthouse, with the local Aborigines. Permanent settlement began in 1836 when squatters arrived in the area known as Whale Head. The name was changed to Shortland's Bluff…

View More »

St Leonards

History ST LEONARDS was given its name from ST LEONARDS station a pastoral farm in the area which was named after a town bearing the same name in sussex, england. Firewood became a major source of income for the towns, and today other than a few hectares of native timber close to OCEAN GROVE, there is no original bush lands on the entire peninsula. INDENTED HEAD was named by the explorer matthew flinders in 1802 when he observed the shape of the bellarine peninsula coastline…

View More »