Wandin 3139

Wandin is a rural town 42 km. east of Melbourne and 8 km. beyond Lilydale. There are adjoining agricultural districts of Wandin North and (eastwards) Wandin Yallock.

The name is first recorded in the Parish of Wandin Yallock, surveyed 1866-8. The parish survey reserved a site for a township about 1 km. south of the present township, but the coming of the railway in 1901 resulted in the township being built in its present position. Wandin and Yallock are thought to be Aboriginal words for running water or running stream.

The Land Act 1869 provided for farmers to purchase or lease relatively small holdings, which was feasible with Wandin's soil and regular rainfall. Fruit and vegetables were grown extensively, with raspberries doing well. A jam factory was opened in the 1870s, others followed in the following decade and pulp was exported interstate and overseas. Passion fruit were grown commercially from 1892 to 1920.

A United Free Methodist Church opened in 1867. The State primary school opened in 1885, superseding the Common School in the church premises (1869-1885). A second school was opened in Wandin North in 1915 and another in Wandin East in 1916. Wandin had an active horticultural society (1891), with entries for 40 classes of fruit. The number of classes fell to 20 by 1900, indicating that less successful crops were being eliminated.

The influence of the Methodist churches and the Rechabites kept Wandin free of hotels and wine saloons.

Water supply for the Wandin township was provided in 1930 from the O'Shannassy Dam, although the water aqueduct had been built in 1913 passing through Wandin on its way to Melbourne's eastern suburbs. Electricity was connected in 1952.

Wandin township has a small drive-in shopping centre, a hall, community house, senior citizens' centre and several reserves. The largest, with an oval, is the Wandin North reserve, which is an indication of how place names can be shifted about. A short distance south of the township are the Mont De Lancey historic house and gardens, originally owned by the Sebire family (see Further Reading).

The Wandin North district and the Wandin North school are about two kilometres north-west of Wandin. Wandin Yallock primary school, war memorial and Uniting church are about one kilometre south-east of Wandin. About three kilometres further south-east is Wandin East with a reserve, hall and recreation facilities.

The popular television series "A Country Practice"in Wandin Valley is not from Wandin, Victoria, but is in a New South Wales setting. The actual town is Windsor.

The median house price in Wandin was about 82% of the median for metropolitan Melbourne during 1987-96.

The census populations of Wandin, Wandin East, Wandin North and Wandin Yallock have been 720 (1911), 882 (1933), and 1,341 (1961). Their estimated population in 1993 was 3,450.


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