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Patterson Lakes

Patterson Lakes is located in outer south-east Melbourne in Victoria, Australia.


  • Area:4.269 km2
  • Elevation:7 m
  • Population:7,564
  • Local Government Area:City of Kingston


Patterson Lakes is located in outer south-east Melbourne in Victoria, Australia. The canal suburb is located 35 km southeast of Melbourne's central business district. Its local government area is the City of Kingston. In the 2016 census, Patterson Lakes had a population of 7,564.Patterson Lakes consists predominantly of new houses, and is home to the most popular boat launching facilities in Victoria. The Patterson River is a popular portal for Port Phillip. It includes four public launching ramps; joins the Tidal Canal system to Port Phillip; and includes the Patterson Lakes Marina and its facilities in Middle Harbour and Inner Harbour. # History ## Early history After the melting of the last great ice age, sea levels were 1–2 metres higher than today. When sea levels subsided to their current levels, fresh water from the Dandenong Ranges flowed into low-lying regions. Carrum Carrum Swamp, an extensive wetlands ecosystem was created, an area encompassing some 5,000 hectares from Mordialloc to Frankston and inland towards Dandenong.Prior to European discovery, Patterson Lakes was populated by Indigenous Australians known as the Kulin people. Inhabitants in the area were from the Bunurong language group, of the Mayone-Bulluk clan. Both the Mayone-Bulluk and Ngaruk-Willam clans would meet in the area of Dandenong often to hold ceremonies and trade. These gatherings were often attended by guests from other Bunurong clans or from neighbouring tribes, such as the Wathaurung and the Wurundjeri clans from the Woiwurong. As with most indigenous people of the world, Mayone-Bulluk cultural, ceremonial and spiritual life was dictated by the seasonal availability of natural resources. Through thousands of years of observation Bunurong People were able to predict the availability of their seasonal resources by certain changes in plant growth and animal behaviour.Europeans first set foot in nearby Frankston as early as 1803, thirty-two years before the founding of Melbourne (the first major European settlement in the then Port Phillip District). A commemorative plaque near the mouth of Kananook Creek marks the location of where Charles Grimes and his party went ashore searching for fresh water, and met with approximately 30 local inhabitants. ## The foundation of Patterson Lakes Early development was hampered by poor soils, distance from the Melbourne city centre, and the existence of a major swamp occupying much of the area between Mordialloc and Seaford.In 1866 the Carrum Carrum Swamp was surveyed and the land between Mordialloc Creek and Keast Park in Seaford was divided into 18 allotments and sold by auction for around three pounds per acre. In 1871 the government opened it for selection. The swamp was an impediment to the settlers and there was much discussion on how to reclaim the land, the first contracts for drainage works commenced in 1873. Attempts to reclaim the lower swamplands were ineffective. In 1876 it was decided to cut a 10-metre wide channel to Port Phillip Bay. It was to be known as 'Patterson Cut' and had been named after a State Parliamentarian - the Hon. J.B. Patterson. In 1876 the area that is now occupied by Patterson Lakes was owned by Len Woodward, who used the area for holding pastures for livestock. In the early 1970s some 200 acres of this area was subdivided into Melbourne's first subdivision around artificial lakes. Other occupants of the area were the Priestly family who had landholdings either side of the Patterson River and ran a marina just east of what is now Pier One Drive. The Fitzgerald family ran a horse riding centre on the north-east corner of Thompsons Road and Old Wells Road on land that is now owned by Melbourne Water. The Walker family also owned some of the southernmost land bordering Eel Race Creek at one stage.The suburb of Patterson Lakes was to be located in Carrum on what was originally part of the Carrum Carrum Swamp. The Carrum Carrum Swamp was drained in 1879 when the Patterson Cut, and other drainage measures were undertaken to prevent flooding of the Eumemmering Creek, which overflowed into the Carrum Carrum Swamp. The mouth of the Patterson Cut was mostly only open during the winter months, so heavy spring and summer rains often caused flooding to properties on the edge of the swamp area. Flood damage as far north as Edithvale often occurred. The only remnants of the Carrum Carrum Swamp now form the Edithvale-Seaford Wetlands (a Ramsar Wetland of International Importance.) ## The Carrum Cowboys The Carrum Cowboys were a group of teenagers, who rode their horses around Carrum and the surrounding areas in the late 1950s and 1960s. The name was a tag given to the group by the local police. The Cowboys rode on footpaths and were often riding too fast at the beach, which would lead to a number of complaints from local residents. On several occasions members of the Cowboys were pursued by police, which led to court action and fines being imposed. The over 50s AFL team for Patterson Lakes and Carrum is called the Carrum Cowboys. ## The development of Patterson Lakes The decision to go ahead with what was originally going to be called Gladesville took place in 1973. The development of residential areas adjacent to canals and waterways had been carried out successfully in many places. No-one had attempted to do this in Victoria unlike in other states. When Donald Cameron looked closely at the land adjoining the Patterson River, he saw the possibility of a development. If it proved to be feasible and practicable, it would give home owners access to Port Phillip from their "back door". A large part of the area to the east of Carrum had flooded in the 1930s and 1950s, but to the engineers investigating the land, the important issues were why this occurred and how it could be prevented from occurring again. A common misconception was that the area was all swamp and mud. Extensive drilling found that only a surface layer of peat-like material was unsuitable. Underneath this layer was fine dense sand. The engineers realised that once the unsuitable material was removed (and used to strengthen levee banks and create landscaped areas and reserves) they would then be able to excavate to form lakes and canals, and use the excavated sand in forming residential sites. By using this fine, dense, carefully compacted sand, all the proposed residential sites would be brought to a level above that required by the authorities. The first soil was turned in 1974 in the north-east corner of Patterson Lakes around Iluka Island (Lake Legana.) Originally the plans were to build high rise towers of up to 15 stories in height. Patterson Lakes was rezoned from rural to residential. Central sites were planned for a shopping centre and for a marina which would have a second access to the river via flood gates. Sites for housing and apartments overlooking the marina and the river were identified. Sites for a primary school and for community facilities were also incorporated into the overall plan. Also the project was "different", in that more than a hundred non-lake, residential sites were created to further the concept of a new community having a mix of socio-economic groups. ## Other history 1960s The Priestley family after gaining relevant approval were instrumental in establishing a dry dock marina. The first man made marina in the Southern Hemisphere was formed and the largest of its kind in Victoria. Having originally been named Whaler's Cove Marina the marina was later renamed Patterson Lakes Marina. In February 1966 the local coastguard branch was setup.The inaugural meeting of Flotilla 7 was held at a private residence in Chelsea on Tues 15 Feb 1966 at 8pm.From day one in 1966 until 2011, Bill Hills was a member of VF07, a remarkable achievement.The executive was made up of: Commander: Reg Skinner Deputy Commander, Bill Hills Staff Officer, Bob White Training Officer, Alf Priestley In April 1966 the Patterson Lakes Canoe Club was founded, and in 2001 a new clubhouse was built at the Patterson River Launching Way.1980s The Patterson Lakes Radio Model Yacht Club was founded in 1981. The Patterson Lakes Community Centre was founded in 1985. Patterson Lakes Post Office opened on 1 April 1986. The National Watersports Centre was founded in 1988.1990s Carrum Rowing Club was founded in 1991. The National Watersports Centre Ski Club was founded in 1992. In 1999 the Dingley Pony Club moved to Patterson Lakes.2000s In January 2004 the Patterson Lakes Outrigger Club was founded at the Patterson River Launching Way. The Patterson Lakes Library was founded in late 2009. The Gladesville Shopping Centre was founded in late 2011. The Carrum and Patterson Lakes Forum was formed in 2010 and the now disbanded, Residents Association of Patterson Lakes was formed in 2012 after Melbourne Water made changes to the precept rates. # Weather # Things to do