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Sorrento

Sorrento is a coastal town south of Metropolitan Melbourne on the Mornington Peninsula, in Victoria, Australia.

Details

  • Area:7.014 km2
  • Elevation:27 m
  • Population:1,592
  • Local Government Area:Mornington Peninsula Shire Council

Description

Sorrento is a coastal town south of Metropolitan Melbourne on the Mornington Peninsula, in Victoria, Australia. It is thought that the name 'Sorrento' (after the Italian seaside town) was conferred upon what was known as Sullivans Bay when the area was first opened for housing development in 1869. # History The Boon wurrung people occupied the area now known as the Mornington Peninsula for tens of thousands of years before the arrival of Europeans. In February 1802, Lieutenant John Murray of HMS Lady Nelson led the first British force to enter Port Phillip Bay. Murray chose to anchor Lady Nelson off what is now known as Sorrento Beach. On 17 February the crew landed ashore and were greeted by about 18 local Aboriginals. The crew, with their dinners in hand, showed how they ate bread. While one of the crew was handing out bread to everyone, they were ambushed. In response, several Aboriginal Australians were shot at by musket fire, with three receiving likely mortal wounds. Murray then ordered grapeshot and round shot to be fired from the carronades aboard the ship at the fleeing attackers. This occurred at a place Murray named Bowen's Point which is now referred to as the Western Sister headland on the Sorrento foreshore. After exploring the southern part of the bay, Murray formally took possession of the area on 8 March 1802 for King George III of Great Britain in a small ceremony at a place now known as the Point King Foreshore Reserve in Sorrento. A few days later Murray sailed out of the heads and returned to Sydney.In 1803, the British returned and established a convict settlement under the command of Lieutenant Governor David Collins at the Eastern Sister headland of Sullivan Bay in Sorrento. The site became the first British settlement in mainland Australia outside of the Sydney region. Within a few months, the settlement of around 500 people was abandoned and subsequently moved to Hobart in Tasmania. The famous convict, William Buckley, escaped from the Collins Settlement and went on to live with Aboriginal people in the Geelong area for over thirty years.The Collins Settlement in Sorrento saw the first magistrates' court, public hospital, postal service and government printing office to be established in the region later known as Victoria. The first Victorian wedding, christening and funeral services were also held at the Sullivan Bay site. Sorrento Post Office opened on 10 January 1871; the current Sorrento Post Office dates from 1904–05 and is heritage-listed.A horse and steam powered tram which ran between the foreshore and the back beach opened in 1890 and closed in 1920.The town has a number of grand historic homes and hotels which date back to the 1860s, almost all of which have been constructed with local limestone. The Australia ICOMOS charter for the conservation of places of cultural significance in the practice of local heritage protection has listed 30 properties. Mechanics' Institute, Sorrento was built in 1877 using local limestone and the building, which is now classified by the National Trust of Australia, houses the Nepean Historical Society's museum. Other notable limestone buildings still standing include: Sorrento Hotel (1872), Anglican Church (1875 nave, 1889 transept), Athenaeum Theatre (1894), Continental Hotel (1875), Whitehall Guest House (1904). The Koonya Hotel and Morgans (both on the foreshore, currently known as Italico restaurant) were built by the Skelton/Clark family (1876). The sandstone Presbyterian Church was built around 1880. Ophir House, opposite the Masonic Lodge, a miniature Whitehall, was replaced by contemporary units. The Sorrento Park, established in 1870, contains a variety of trees, including an Aleppo Pine grown from the seed of the Lone Pine of Gallipoli. Situated above the beach and overlooking the bay, Sorrento Park has a children's playground, BBQ facilities, and public toilets. # Weather # Things to do

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