Local government in Victoria
Local government in the Australian state of Victoria consist of 79 local government areas. Referred to as municipalities, Victorian LGAs are classified as cities, rural cities and boroughs. In general, an urban or suburban LGA is called a city and is governed by a City Council, while a rural LGA covering a larger rural area is called a shire and is governed by a Shire Council. Local councils have the same administrative functions and similar political structures, regardless of their classification, they will have an elected council and a mayor or shire president responsible for chairing meetings of the council. The City of Melbourne has a Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor, who are directly elected, in the other councils a mayor and deputy mayor are elected by fellow Councillors from among their own number. Since 2017, the mayor of the City of Greater Geelong has not been directly elected. In addition, there are 10 unincorporated areas, consisting of small islands or ski resorts, which are administered either by the state government or management boards.
Council elections are held every four years on the fourth Saturday in October. The last council elections were held on 22 October 2016. Election was not held for the City of Greater Geelong, under administration until council elections were held on 27 October 2017. In 2016, 637 local Councillors were elected in the 78 Councils contested. Casual vacancies of councilors are filled by countback of the last ballots, except for the Lord Mayor of Melbourne, filled by a by-election. Local government had existed in Victoria since before its separation from New South Wales in 1851; the Town of Melbourne was established by an Act of the NSW Governor and Legislative Council in 1842 and the Borough of Geelong was established in 1849. Both bodies continued after the creation of Victoria as a separate colony, both became cities. Road districts were established under legislation passed in 1853. From 1862 many road districts became shires pursuant to the District Councils Bill 1862. To become a shire, the road district had to be over 100 square miles in size and have annual rate revenue of over £1000.
There were 96 road districts or shires created by 1865. The first Victorian general Act dealing with local government was the Local Government Act 1874, which empowered shires to be established in territories that could financially support them, boroughs to be established in areas not exceeding 9 square miles with a population of at least 300. Promotion to town or city status was dependent on the gross revenue of the council; such promotion was not automatic. Local government has been referred to in the Victorian constitution since 1979, but it does not operate so as to make Victoria a federation or protect the borders or powers of local government from amendment by executive order or act of parliament. Today, the constitution recognises it "a distinct and essential tier of government" and prohibits a council being dismissed by executive order, but grants significant powers to the state parliament in respect of local government; the clauses have been amended many times by parliament, but since 2006 the Constitution Act has required a referendum to further alter them.
The current Local Government Act dates to 1989 and eliminated administrative distinctions between cities and shires, introduced the category of rural city and removed the possibility of declaring any further boroughs or towns. Five shires were dissolved with the 1994 restructure. In 1992, there were 65 cities in Victoria. In 1994, the Jeff Kennett government restructured local government in Victoria, his reforms dissolved 210 councils and sacked 1600 elected councillors, created 78 new councils through amalgamations. In suburban Melbourne 53 municipalities were reduced to 26; the new local government areas were headed by commissioners appointed by the State Government, democratically elected councils returned in 1996. The 79th LGA was created in 2002 when the Shire of Delatite was split into the Rural City of Benalla and the Shire of Mansfield. A new City of Sunbury was proposed to be created from part of the City of Hume after the 2016 council elections, but this was abandoned by the Victorian Government in October 2015.
All local government areas are governed in a similar fashion, with an elected council, one of whom is the mayor. The City of Melbourne has a directly elected Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor, whereas other councils elect a mayor from one of their number; the City of Greater Geelong has not had a directly elected mayor since 2017. Some LGAs are divided into wards for the purpose of electing Councillors. Voting is in all cases compulsory for enrolled voters and elections for all councils now happen on the same day every four years—on the fourth Saturday in October two years after state parliamentary elections; the average area of a municipal district within the Melbourne metropolitan area is 285 square kilometres. Despite this area being comparable to the average area of a US or English county, there are no administrative subdivisions such as American towns and cities or English parishes.
Electoral district of Bellarine
The electoral district of Bellarine is one of the electoral districts of Victoria, for the Victorian Legislative Assembly. It covers an area of 367 square kilometres stretching from the Bellarine Peninsula to the outer eastern suburbs of Geelong, it includes the towns of Barwon Heads, Clifton Springs, Indented Head, Ocean Grove, Point Lonsdale and Queenscliff and the Geelong suburbs of Leopold and Moolap. It lies within the Western Victoria Region of the Legislative Council; the seat was first created in a redistribution prior to the 1967 election but was abolished and replaced by Geelong East and South Barwon in 1976. It was revived prior to the 1985 election after Geelong East was itself abolished and population increases in South Barwon moved that electorate westwards, it has traditionally been a marginal seat. Graham Ernst of the Labor Party won the seat in the 1985 and 1988 elections but was defeated at the 1992 election by the Liberal Party's Garry Spry who held the seat until his retirement in 2002.
At the election in November of that year it was one of many seats to fall to the Labor Party, with Lisa Neville winning the seat on a swing of over nine percent. Neville still holds the seat today. Electorate profile: Bellarine District, Victorian Electoral Commission
William Buckley (convict)
William Buckley was an English convict, transported to Australia, was given up for dead and lived in an Aboriginal community for many years. According to one source Buckley was born in Marton, England, to Eliza Buckley. In the book The life and adventures of William Buckley his place of birth is, given as Macclesfield. Buckley had one brother. At around the age of six he was being raised by his mother's father in Macclesfield, he was left to enlist in the King's Foot Regiment. He was soon transferred to the King's Own Regiment. In 1799 his regiment went to the Netherlands to fight against Napoleon, under the command of the Duke of York, where Buckley suffered an injury to his hand. In London, Buckley was convicted of knowingly receiving a bolt of stolen cloth, he was sentenced to transportation to New South Wales for 14 years. Descriptions of the adult Buckley vary. According to John Helder Wedge, who met him in 1835,'with his long, matted hair, he was a most awfully savage-looking fellow, standing 6 feet 5 7⁄8 inches in height without shoes, erect in person, well proportioned'.
When Buckley appeared at their camp, James Gumm out of curiosity measured him as 6 feet 7 inches or 6 feet 8 inches. Buckley himself records his height as being 6 feet 5 inches. John Fawkner, at Sullivan Bay when he was 11 years old, states that Buckley's height was 6 feet 4 1⁄2 inches. According to George Russell who met him near the Yarra River in 1836, Buckley stood 6 feet 4 inches tall, but numerous other heights are reported, ranging from 6 feet 3 inches to 6 feet 7 inches. According to Russell, Buckley "was a tall, ungainly man... and altogether his looks were not in his favour. That general description was echoed by other reports of the day, he was represented as being of low intelligence. Buckley left England in April 1803 aboard HMS Calcutta, one of two ships sent to Port Phillip to form a new settlement under Lieutenant-Colonel David Collins, they arrived in October 1803, anchored on the south-eastern side of the bay, near modern-day Sorrento. The new settlement, called Sullivan Bay ran into problems.
It lacked fresh water and had poor soil, so a decision was made a few weeks to abandon the site. After hearing that the settlement was about to move to Van Diemen's Land, at 9 pm on 27 December 1803, Buckley and three other convicts ran away into the bush. One was shot and injured, but the others made their way around Port Phillip Bay, they split up in the vicinity of present-day Melbourne. Buckley's companions went north-east, hoping to reach Sydney, which they thought was not far away, although it was 1000 km away around the coast. Buckley and dehydrated, continued alone around the bay. During the weeks following his escape, Buckley avoided contact with Aboriginal people, travelling around Port Phillip Bay as far as the Bellarine Peninsula. In an account collected by George Langhorne in 1835, Buckley told of his first meeting with a small Aboriginal family group, who gave him immense help and shared food, from whom he began to learn their language, before parting company. In the well known account collected by John Morgan in 1852, Buckley describes travelling much further.
Common to both accounts, however, is his significant first meeting with a group of Wathaurung women, several months after his escape. Buckley had taken a spear used to mark a grave for use as a walking stick; the women befriended him after recognising the spear as belonging to a relative who had died and invited him back to their camp. Believed to be the returned spirit of the former tribesman, he was joyfully welcomed and adopted by the group. For the next thirty-two years, he continued to live among the Wathaurung people on the Bellarine Peninsula being treated with great affection and respect. "By virtue of his age and peaceful ways, Buckley... became a Ngurungaeta, a person of considerable respect among his people and his voice was influential in deciding matters of war and peace." Buckley became expert with Aboriginal weapons, though despite this, as a revered spirit, he was banned from participating in tribal wars. He had at least two Aboriginal wives, certainly a daughter by one of them.
One of these is said to have been killed by the tribe for preferring an Aboriginal man. Buckley recounted information about warfare among the Aborigines. According to Buckley he was a central part of life among the Australian hunter-gatherers, he had witnessed wars and blood-feuds. This information was uniquely important. On 6 July 1835 William Buckley appeared at the camp site of John Batman's Port Phillip Association with a party of Aboriginal people who had told him about the sighting of a ship at Indented Head. Wearing kangaroo skins and carrying Aboriginal weapons, he walked into the camp; the three European men at the camp were William Todd, James Gumm and Alexander Thomson and five Sydney aborigines, left behind to maintain a base
Geelong is a port city located on Corio Bay and the Barwon River, in the state of Victoria, Australia. Geelong is 75 kilometres south-west of Melbourne, it is the second largest Victorian city, with an estimated urban population of 192,393 as of June 2016. Geelong runs from the plains of Lara in the north to the rolling hills of Waurn Ponds to the south, with Corio Bay to the east and hills to the west. Geelong is the administrative centre for the City of Greater Geelong municipality, which covers urban and coastal areas surrounding the city, including the Bellarine Peninsula. Geelong City is known as the'Gateway City' due to its central location to surrounding Victorian regional centres like Ballarat in the north west, Great Ocean Road and Warrnambool in the southwest, Hamilton and Winchelsea to the west, the state capital of Melbourne in the north east. Geelong was named in 1827, with the name derived from the local Wathaurong Aboriginal name for the region, thought to mean "land" or "cliffs" or "tongue of land or peninsula".
The area was first surveyed in three weeks after Melbourne. The post office was open by June 1840; the first woolstore was erected in this period and it became the port for the wool industry of the Western District. During the gold rush, Geelong experienced a brief boom as the main port to the rich goldfields of the Ballarat district; the city diversified into manufacturing, during the 1860s, it became one of the largest manufacturing centres in Australia with its wool mills and paper mills. It was proclaimed a city in 1910, with industrial growth from this time until the 1960s establishing the city as a manufacturing centre for the state, the population grew to over 100,000 by the mid-1960s. During the city's early years, an inhabitant of Geelong was known as a Geelongite, or a Pivotonian, derived from the city's nickname of "The Pivot", referencing the city's role as a shipping and rail hub for the area. Population increases over the last decade were due to growth in service industries, as the manufacturing sector has declined.
Redevelopment of the inner city has occurred since the 1990s, as well as gentrification of inner suburbs, has a population growth rate higher than the national average. It is home to the Geelong Football Club, the second oldest club in the Australian Football League. Today, Geelong stands as an emerging health and advanced manufacturing hub; the city's economy is shifting and despite experiencing the drawbacks of losing much of its heavy manufacturing, it is seeing much growth in other sectors, positioning itself as one of the leading non-capital Australian cities. The area of Geelong and the Bellarine Peninsula was occupied by the Wathaurong Indigenous Australian tribe; the first nonindigenous person recorded as visiting the region was Lieutenant John Murray, who commanded the brig HMS Lady Nelson. After anchoring outside Port Phillip Heads, on 1 February 1802, he sent a small boat with six men to explore. Led by John Bowen, they explored the immediate area. On reporting favourable findings, Lady Nelson entered Port Phillip on 14 February, did not leave until 12 March.
During this time, Murray explored the Geelong area and, whilst on the far side of the bay, claimed the entire area for Britain. He named the bay Port King, after Philip Gidley King Governor of New South Wales. Governor King renamed the bay Port Phillip after the first governor of New South Wales, Arthur Phillip. Arriving not long after Murray was Matthew Flinders, who entered Port Phillip on 27 April 1802, he charted the entire bay, including the Geelong area, believing he was the first to sight the huge expanse of water, but in a rush to reach Sydney before winter set in, he left Port Phillip on 3 May. In January 1803, Surveyor-General Charles Grimes arrived at Port Phillip in the sloop Cumberland and mapped the area, including the future site of Geelong, but reported the area was unfavourable for settlement and returned to Sydney on 27 February. In October of the same year, HMS Calcutta led by Lieutenant Colonel David Collins arrived in the bay to establish the Sullivan Bay penal colony. Collins was dissatisfied with the area chosen, sent a small party led by First Lieutenant J.
H. Tuckey to investigate alternate sites; the party spent 22 October to 27 October on the north shore of Corio Bay, where the first Aboriginal death at the hands of a European in Victoria occurred. The next European visit to the area was by the explorers Hamilton William Hovell, they reached the northern edge of Corio Bay – the area of Port Phillip that Geelong now fronts – on 16 December 1824, it was at this time they reported that the Aboriginals called the area Corayo, the bay being called Djillong. Hume and Hovell had been contracted to travel overland from Sydney to Port Phillip, having achieved this, they stayed the night and began their return journey two days on 18 December; the convict William Buckley escaped from the Sullivan Bay settlement in 1803, lived among the Wathaurong people for 32 years on the Bellarine Peninsula. In 1835, John Batman used Indented Head as his base camp, leaving behind several employees whilst he returned to Tasmania for more supplies and his family. In this same year, Buckley surrendered to the party led by John Helder Wedge and was pardoned by Lieutenant-Governor Sir George Arthur, subsequently given the position of interpreter to the natives.
In March 1836, three squatters, David Fisher, James Strachan, George Russell arrived on Caledonia and set
A paddle steamer is a steamship or riverboat powered by a steam engine that drives paddle wheels to propel the craft through the water. In antiquity, paddle wheelers followed the development of poles and sails, where the first uses were wheelers driven by animals or humans. In the early 19th century, paddle wheels were the predominant way of propulsion for steam-powered boats. In the late 19th century, paddle propulsion was superseded by the screw propeller and other marine propulsion systems that have a higher efficiency in rough or open water. Paddle wheels continue to be used by small pedal-powered paddle boats and by some ships that operate tourist voyages; the latter are powered by diesel engines. The paddle wheel is a large steel framework wheel; the outer edge of the wheel is fitted with regularly-spaced paddle blades. The bottom quarter or so of the wheel travels underwater. An engine rotates the paddle wheel in the water to produce backward as required. More advanced paddle wheel designs feature feathering methods that keep each paddle blade closer to vertical while in the water to increase efficiency.
The upper part of a paddle wheel is enclosed in a paddlebox to minimise splashing. There are two types of paddle wheel steamer, a sternwheeler with a single wheel on the rear, a sidewheeler with one on each side. Both were used as riverboats in the United States; some still operate for example on the Mississippi River. Although the first sternwheelers were invented in Europe, they saw the most service in North America on the Mississippi River. Enterprise was built at Brownsville, Pennsylvania, in 1814 as an improvement over the less efficient side wheelers; the second sternwheeler built, Washington of 1816, had two decks and served as the prototype for all subsequent steamboats of the Mississippi, including those made famous in Mark Twain's book Life on the Mississippi. Sidewheelers are used as coastal craft. Though the side wheels and enclosing sponsons make them wider than sternwheelers, they may be more maneuverable, since they can sometimes move the paddles at different speeds, in opposite directions.
This extra maneuverability makes sidewheelers popular on the narrower, winding rivers of the Murray-Darling system in Australia, where a number still operate. European sidewheelers, such as PS Waverley, connect the wheels with solid drive shafts that limit maneuverability and give the craft a wide turning radius; some were built with paddle clutches that disengage one or both paddles so they can turn independently. However, wisdom gained from early experience with sidewheelers deemed that they be operated with clutches out, or as solid shaft vessels. Crews noticed that as ships approached the dock, passengers moved to the side of the ship ready to disembark; the shift in weight, added to independent movements of the paddles, could lead to imbalance and potential capsizing. Paddle tugs were operated with clutches in, as the lack of passengers aboard meant that independent paddle movement could be used safely and the added maneuverability exploited to the full. In a simple paddle wheel, where the paddles are fixed around the periphery, power is lost due to churning of the water as the paddles enter and leave the water surface.
Ideally, the paddles should remain vertical while under water. This ideal can be approximated by use of linkages connected to a fixed eccentric; the eccentric is fixed forward of the main wheel centre. It is coupled to each paddle via a lever; the geometry is designed such that the paddles are kept vertical for the short duration that they are in the water. The use of a paddle wheel in navigation appears for the first time in the mechanical treatise of the Roman engineer Vitruvius, where he describes multi-geared paddle wheels working as a ship odometer; the first mention of paddle wheels as a means of propulsion comes from the 4th–5th century military treatise De Rebus Bellicis, where the anonymous Roman author describes an ox-driven paddle-wheel warship: The Italian physician Guido da Vigevano, planning for a new crusade, made illustrations for a paddle boat, propelled by manually turned compound cranks. One of the drawings of the Anonymous Author of the Hussite Wars shows a boat with a pair of paddle-wheels at each end turned by men operating compound cranks.
The concept was improved by the Italian Roberto Valturio in 1463, who devised a boat with five sets, where the parallel cranks are all joined to a single power source by one connecting-rod, an idea adopted by his compatriot Francesco di Giorgio. In 1704, the French physicist Denis Papin constructed the first ship powered by his steam engine, mechanically linked to paddles; this made him the first to construct a steam-powered boat. He has poured the first steam cylinder of the world in the iron foundry Veckerhagen. In 1787 Patrick Miller of Dalswinton invented a double-hulled boat, propelled on the Firth of Forth by men working a capstan that drove paddles on each side. One of the firsts functioning steamships, Palmipède, the first paddle steamer, was built in France in 1774 by Marquis Claude de Jouffroy and his colleagues; the 13-metre steamer with rotating paddles sailed on the Doubs River in June and July 1776. In 1783 a new paddle steamer by de Jouffroy, Pyroscaphe steamed up the river Saône for fifteen minutes before the engine failed.
Bureaucracy and the French Revolution thwarted further progress by de Jouffroy. The next successful attempt at a paddle-driven steam ship was by the Scottish engineer William Symington, who suggested steam power to Patrick Mi
Van Diemen's Land
Van Diemen's Land was the original name used by most Europeans for the island of Tasmania, part of Australia. The name was changed from Van Diemen's Land to Tasmania in 1856; the Dutch explorer Abel Tasman was the first European to land on the shores of Tasmania in 1642. Landing at Blackman Bay and having the Dutch flag flown at North Bay, Tasman named the island Anthoonij van Diemenslandt, in honour of Anthony van Diemen, the Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies, who had sent Tasman on his voyage of discovery. Between 1772 and 1798, only the southeastern portion of the island was visited. Tasmania was not known to be an island until Matthew Flinders and George Bass circumnavigated it in the Norfolk in 1798–99. Around 1784–85, Henri Peyroux de la Coudrenière, an army officer serving in Spanish Louisiana, wrote a "memoir on the advantages to be gained for the Spanish crown by the settlement of Van Dieman's Land". After receiving no response from the Spanish government, Peyroux proposed it to the French government, as "Mémoire sur les avantages qui résulteraient d'une colonie puissante à la terre de Diémen".
In January 1793, a French expedition under the command of Antoine Raymond Joseph de Bruni d'Entrecasteaux anchored in Recherche Bay and a period of five weeks was spent in that area, carrying out explorations into both natural history and geography. In 1802 and 1803, the French expedition commanded by Nicolas Baudin explored D'Entrecasteaux Channel and Maria Island and carried out charting of Bass Strait (Baudin had been associated, like Peyroux, with the resettlement of the Acadians from French Canada. Sealers and whalers based themselves on Tasmania's islands from 1798 and in August 1803, New South Wales Governor Philip King sent Lieutenant John Bowen to establish a small military outpost on the eastern shore of the Derwent River to forestall any claims to the island arising from the activities of the French explorers. Major-General Ralph Darling was appointed Governor of New South Wales in 1825, in the same year he visited Hobart Town, on 3 December proclaimed the establishment of the independent colony, of which he became governor for three days.
The demonym for Van Diemen's Land was "Van Diemonian", though contemporaries used the spelling Vandemonian. In 1856, the colony was granted responsible self-government with its representative parliament, the name of the island and colony was changed to Tasmania on 1 January 1856. Main articles: Port Arthur, Convicts on the West Coast of TasmaniaFrom the 1800s to the 1853 abolition of penal transportation, Van Diemen's Land was the primary penal colony in Australia. Following the suspension of transportation to New South Wales, all transported convicts were sent to Van Diemen's Land. In total, some 73,000 convicts were transported to Van Diemen's Land, or about 40% of all convicts sent to Australia. Male convicts served their sentences as assigned labour to free settlers or in gangs assigned to public works. Only the most difficult convicts were sent to the Tasman Peninsula prison known as Port Arthur. Female convicts were sent to a female factory. There were five female factories in Van Diemen's Land.
Convicts completing their sentences or earning their ticket-of-leave promptly left Van Diemen's Land. Many settled in the new free colony of Victoria, to the dismay of the free settlers in towns such as Melbourne. On 6 August 1829, the brig Cyprus, a government-owned vessel used to transport goods and convicts, set sail from Hobart Town for Macquarie Harbour Penal Station on a routine voyage carrying supplies and convicts. While the ship was becalmed in Recherche Bay, convicts allowed on deck attacked their guards and took control of the brig; the mutineers marooned officers and convicts who did not join the mutiny without supplies. The convicts sailed the Cyprus to Canton, where they scuttled her and claimed to be castaways from another vessel. On the way, Cyprus visited Japan during the height of the period of severe Japanese restrictions on the entry of foreigners, the first Australian ship to do so. Tensions sometimes ran high between the settlers and the "Vandemonians" as they were termed during the Victorian gold rush when a flood of settlers from Van Diemen's Land rushed to the Victorian goldfields.
Complaints from Victorians about released convicts from Van Diemen's Land re-offending in Victoria was one of the contributing reasons for the eventual abolition of transportation to Van Diemen's Land in 1853. Anthony Trollope used the term Vandemonian: "They are united in their declaration that the cessation of the coming of convicts has been their ruin."In 1856, Van Diemen's Land was renamed Tasmania. This removed the unsavoury criminal connotations with the name Van Diemen's Land, while honouring Abel Tasman, the first European to find the island; the last penal settlement in Tasmania at Port Arthur closed in 1877. The critically acclaimed award-winning film The Last Confession of Alexander Pearce tells the true story of Alexander Pearce through his final confession to fellow Irishman and colonial priest Philip Conolly; the film was nominated for a Rose d'Or, an Irish Film and Television Award, an Australian Film Institute Award and won an IF Award in 2009. The ABC telemovie The Outlaw Michael Howe is set in Van Diemen's Land and tells the story of bushranger Michael Howe's convict-led rebellion.
U2's 1988 album Rattle and Hum has a song called "Van Diemen's Land" with lead vocals sung by The Edge. Tom Russell sets Van Diemen's Land as the ship's destination in his song "Isaac L
Portarlington is a historic coastal township located on the Bellarine Peninsula, 28 km from the city of Geelong, in the state of Victoria, Australia. It has a diverse population which includes a wide range of ethnic backgrounds, a high proportion of retirees, a large seasonal holiday influx; the rising hills behind the town feature vineyards and olive groves, offer spectacular panoramic views across Port Phillip Bay. Portarlington is a centre of fishing and aquaculture. At one time the town claimed the largest Caravan Park in the Southern Hemisphere, although the size has reduced in recent decades. With direct ferry links to the city of Melbourne Portarlington serves as a gateway to the historic towns and surf beaches of the Bellarine Peninsula; the area around Portarlington was inhabited by the aboriginal Wathaurung people. Aboriginal shell middens can be found along the cliff-line at Portarlington. Mussels are the dominant shell species in evidence, demonstrating the importance of mussels to the area in pre-historic times.
A ground-edged stone axe has been found at Portarlington. A stone artifact scatter existed at a nearby site, but has been destroyed by development. Another stone artifact scatter has been identified in the west of the town; the Port Phillip area was first explored by Europeans in January 1802, when Lieutenant John Murray spent three weeks investigating the Bay entrance. He does not appear to have landed at Portarlington. Ten weeks the English explorer, Matthew Flinders, camped at Indented Head, 6 km to the south-east of Portarlington, where he traded with aborigines while undertaking a survey of the Australian coastline, he subsequently landed several times on the peninsula coast to take bearings, including at the location of Portarlington, at Point Richards. In February 1803, the Surveyor-General Charles Grimes landed from his ship, the Cumberland, at Portarlington with an expedition and spent several days exploring the Bay coastline to Point Cook, they were impressed by the fine soil in the Bellarine Hills.
They sailed back from Point Cook to Portarlington and landed again, where they were met by aboriginals. They traded food and utensils, however other provisions were stolen from their boat in their absence; some evidence of smallpox among the locals was noted at that time. Apart from the wanderings of the escaped English convict, William Buckley, who lived among the Wautharong people around the Bellarine Peninsula for 32 years after escaping into the bush in 1803, there was little European contact with the area until the arrival of the pioneer settler, John Batman, his Port Phillip Association expedition in 1835. Batman established a base camp at Indented Head, proceeded to survey the interior of the peninsula. Batman wrote glowing reports of the pasture and grazing potential of the Bellarine Hills, with a view of attracting interest in establishing sheep runs in the Port Phillip area. Further exploration was carried out by John Helder Wedge in 1835, with Batman's encouragement, Wedge is believed to have again passed through the vicinity of Portarlington.
He was much impressed by the countryside, which he named "Ballarine", but discovering the scarcity of fresh water, he directed his attentions elsewhere. When the first organised group of settlers arrived from Van Diemen's Land aboard the Enterprize in August 1835, they sought out the well-watered northern reaches of Port Phillip, around the Yarra River. Wedge and the Batman party abandoned Bellarine and Indented Head and followed them there; when the holdings of the Port Phillip Association were allocated, the Bellarine Peninsula was allotted to the member, John Sinclair, the Superintendent of the Engineers' Depot in Launceston. Sinclair was injured in February 1837, when he came to Port Phillip and attempted to visit his property, his two companions, Joseph Gellibrand and George Hesse, who continued the journey without him, no trace of them was found. Sinclair was evacuated back to Melbourne from Point Henry and made no further effort to take up his allotted land, although he remained in the Port Phillip District.
By 1839 the Port Phillip Association had been bought out by the Derwent Company, which sold a number of runs on the Bellarine Peninsula and Indented Head to squatters, before folding in 1842. Among the earliest known settlers in the vicinity of Portarlington was the former Hobart butcher, Henry Baynton, recorded there in the 1840s. Baynton established a cattle shipping service between Van Diemen's Land, he is believed to have had a station named Westham, which may have occupied a site near the derelict homestead now known as Lincoln's Farm, overlooking Point Richards. Baynton had interests at Cowie's Creek, across the Bay. Baynton sold out to John Brown, identified as the owner of a Point Richards station in 1847. Other squatters known to have had property around the Portarlington area in the 1840s include William Booth, James Conway Langdon, William Harding. In 1848 new land regulations were introduced, the squatters' runs were subdivided into smaller allotments over the following years. By the early 1850s the era of the squatters had passed on the Bellarine Peninsula.
The township of Portarlington was at that time named Drayton. It was renamed Portarlington in 1851 in honour of the English peer, Sir Henry Bennet, 1st Earl of Arlington, however it is suggested, seems more owing to the number of early Irish settlers in the area, that the town was actua