Narbethong, Victoria

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Black Spur Inn Narbethong.JPG
Black Spur Inn at Narbethong
Narbethong is located in Shire of Murrindindi
Coordinates37°34′S 145°39′E / 37.567°S 145.650°E / -37.567; 145.650Coordinates: 37°34′S 145°39′E / 37.567°S 145.650°E / -37.567; 145.650
Population205 (2016 census)[1]
Elevation360 m (1,181 ft)
Location87 km (54 mi) NE of Melbourne
LGA(s)Shire of Murrindindi
State electorate(s)Eildon
Federal Division(s)Indi
Mean max temp Mean min temp Annual rainfall
15.8 °C
60 °F
7.5 °C
46 °F
1,365 mm
53.7 in
Localities around Narbethong:
Glenburn Buxton Marysville
Toolangi Narbethong Cambarville
Healesville Warburton McMahons Creek

Narbethong is a town in central Victoria, Australia. It is located on the Maroondah Highway, 87 kilometres (54 mi) north east of the state capital, Melbourne. At the 2016 census, Narbethong and the surrounding area had a population of 205.[1]


The first European settlement at Narbethong was established in about 1865 by Frederick Fisher.[2]:6 Fisher built a 12-room hotel, the Black Spur Inn, on the road which was being built to link Melbourne with the new goldfield at Woods Point. Fisher came from the town of Narberth in Wales, so it is likely that the name Narbethong was based on that.[2]:7 However, there are also claims that Narbethong is an Aboriginal word meaning cheerful, or cheerful place.[2]:8

Narbethong Post Office opened on 16 October 1883 in a small room at the hotel.[2]:9 In about 1886 the post office moved from the hotel into a small building. The telegraph service was connected to Narbethong in 1891,[2]:11 with the wires being strung along fences and attached to trees. In 1939 the post office building, which was then part of a store and petrol station, was completely destroyed in the Black Friday bushfires.[3] The Post Office closed in 1993.[4]

A primary school opened in Narbethong on 7 July 1903.[2]:12 It originally was part-time, sharing a teacher with Marysville and Buxton.[2]:12[5] In 1913, the Healesville Shire health officer reported that a lack of ventilation made the building a health hazard for students and teachers.[6] A new school building was officially opened by Lord Huntingfield, the Governor of Victoria, on 9 April 1937.[7]

The town was devastated in the Black Friday bushfires in 1939. Initial reports suggested that the hotel was the only building left standing.[8] but other buildings survived including the school and The Hermitage.

Narbethong was again severely affected by the Black Saturday bushfires in 2009.[9] In 2011, a new public hall was built using local timbers, with the whole building being wrapped in a bronze mesh fire resistant screen.[10] It was officially opened on 26 November 2011 by the Governor of Victoria, Alex Chernov.[11]


  1. ^ a b "2016 Census QuickStats Narbethong". Australian Bureau of Statistics. Retrieved 9 February 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g Waghorn, John F. (1983). Narbethong Post Office Centenary 1883-1983. Thomastown, Victoria: John F. Waghorn. ISBN 0959203907.
  3. ^ "AERIAL EYE FOR FOREST GUARDIANS". The Courier-Mail. Brisbane: National Library of Australia. 17 January 1939. p. 8. Retrieved 21 July 2013.
  4. ^ Premier Postal History. "Post Office List". Retrieved 11 April 2008.
  5. ^ "Narbethong State School". Healesville and Yarra Glen Guardian. Vic.: National Library of Australia. 12 May 1917. p. 2. Retrieved 21 July 2013.
  6. ^ "Unhealthy school building". The Argus. Melbourne: National Library of Australia. 29 April 1913. p. 10. Retrieved 21 July 2013.
  7. ^ "Boy welcomes Governor". The Argus. Melbourne: National Library of Australia. 9 April 1937. p. 7. Retrieved 21 July 2013.
  8. ^ "Black Friday – newspaper reports – The Age – 11/01/39 Township Gutted – Narbethong ablaze". 2013. Retrieved 21 July 2013.
  9. ^ "Wiped out: Towns destroyed by killer fires". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 7 February 2009.
  10. ^ "Narbethong hall rebuilt bushfire-resistant following Black Saturday". 2013. Archived from the original on 21 July 2013. Retrieved 21 July 2013.
  11. ^ "Narbethong Community Hall". 2012. Retrieved 21 July 2013.

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