Patterson Lakes, Victoria

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Patterson Lakes
Middle Harbour - Patterson Lakes Marina.jpg
Middle Harbour, Patterson Lakes Marina
Patterson Lakes is located in Melbourne
Patterson Lakes
Patterson Lakes
Coordinates38°04′34″S 145°07′19″E / 38.076°S 145.122°E / -38.076; 145.122Coordinates: 38°04′34″S 145°07′19″E / 38.076°S 145.122°E / -38.076; 145.122
Population7,564 (2016)[1]
 • Density1,801/km2 (4,660/sq mi)
Elevation4 m (13 ft)
Area4.2 km2 (1.6 sq mi)
Time zoneAEST (UTC+10)
LGA(s)City of Kingston
State electorate(s)Carrum
Federal Division(s)Isaacs
Mean max temp Mean min temp Annual rainfall
18.6 °C
65 °F
11.6 °C
53 °F
525 mm
20.7 in
Suburbs around Patterson Lakes:
Bonbeach Chelsea Heights Bangholme
Carrum Patterson Lakes Sandhurst
Seaford Seaford Carrum Downs

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.[2] Its local government area is the City of Kingston. In the 2016 census, Patterson Lakes had a population of 7,564.[1]

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.[3]

Aerial view of Patterson Lakes


Early history[edit]

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.[4]

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.[5]

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).[6] 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.

Watercolour painting by Robert J Hadden in 1895 of Carrum Creek (Patterson River)
Photograph taken in 1905 of Carrum Creek (Patterson River)
1960 before the Patterson Lakes development

The foundation of Patterson Lakes[edit]

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.[6]

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.[7] 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.[8]

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[edit]

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.[9] The over 50s AFL team for Patterson Lakes and Carrum is called the Carrum Cowboys.

The development of Patterson Lakes[edit]

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.[8]

Patterson Lakes

Other history[edit]


  • 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.[10]

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.[11]


  • The Patterson Lakes Radio Model Yacht Club was founded in 1981.[12]
  • The Patterson Lakes Community Centre was founded in 1985.[13]
  • Patterson Lakes Post Office opened on 1 April 1986.[14]
  • The National Watersports Centre was founded in 1988.[15]


  • Carrum Rowing Club was founded in 1991.[16]
  • The National Watersports Centre Ski Club was founded in 1992.[17]
  • In 1999 the Dingley Pony Club moved to Patterson Lakes.[18]


  • In January 2004 the Patterson Lakes Outrigger Club was founded at the Patterson River Launching Way.[19]
  • The Patterson Lakes Library was founded in late 2009.[20]
  • 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.[21][22]
Tidal Canal, Patterson Lakes
Lake Illawong, Quiet Lakes, Patterson Lakes


Patterson Lakes is serviced by the following shopping complexes: Lakeview Shopping Centre, Harbour Plaza Shopping Town & Medical Centre, Gladesville Shopping Centre and The Glade.

Sports and hobby facilities[edit]

  • Patterson Lakes Basketball Club
  • Patterson Lakes Outrigger Club
  • Patterson Lakes Swim School
  • Dingley Pony Club
  • Dragons Abreast Patterson Lakes Pink Lotus
  • Carrum Patterson Lakes Junior Football Club
  • Long Beach Tennis Club
  • Patterson Lakes Tennis Club
  • Carrum Cricket Club
  • Patterson Lakes Canoe Club
  • Carrum Rowing Club
  • Carrum Sailing Club
  • Victorian Drag Boat Club Paterson Lakes Club
  • National Water Sports Centre Ski Club
  • Patterson Lakes Radio Model Yacht Club
  • Patterson River Motor Boat Club

Other facilities[edit]

  • Patterson Lakes Marina
  • Patterson River Launching Way
  • Patterson Lakes Library
  • Patterson Lakes Community Centre
  • National Watersports Centre - developed as an international standard rowing facility in preparation for Melbourne's bid for the 1996 Olympic Games.[15]
  • Numerous retirement villages
  • Numerous cafes and restaurants


Patterson Lakes is serviced by a government primary school, Patterson Lakes Primary School, which operates within Patterson Lakes and a government secondary school, Patterson River Secondary College, which operates from Seaford on the southern boundary of Patterson Lakes. The closest private secondary school to Patterson Lakes is the Cornish College in Bangholme and Haileybury in Keysborough.[23]


Patterson Lakes is serviced by the Carrum Railway Station on the Frankston Line operated by Metro Trains Melbourne.

Access to the area by road is from the Nepean Highway, EastLink, Mornington Peninsula Freeway and Peninsula Link. Patterson Lakes has freeways at its door-step with a travel time to the CBD of 30–35 minutes. Patterson Lakes is accessible by a number of Metlink bus routes servicing the area, which includes the 857 and 708.[24]


The Day-Knight townhouse in Lagoon Place, Patterson Lakes (taken outside of filming)

The filming at Kath Day-Knight and Kel Knight's "townhouse" (in the fictional suburb of Fountain Lakes), in the Australian comedy television series Kath & Kim, is shot in Patterson Lakes in Lagoon Place.[25] Kath & Kimderella was also filmed at the same location as the original Day-Knight house of the TV series.

Former Prime Minister of Australia John Howard has visited Patterson Lakes Primary School to speak on their radio station, as have Bert Newton, the hosts of former radio show Get This, Tony Martin and Ed Kavalee.[26] Patterson Lakes was previously the home to NBA player Andrew Bogut and his family, who used to own two homes in Coral Island Court on the Tidal Canal.[27]


State politics[edit]

Since the state election on 29 November 2014, the suburb of Patterson Lakes has been represented, as part of the District of Carrum in Victoria's Legislative Assembly, by the Labor MP Sonya Kilkenny. The current MLC's for the South Eastern Metropolitan Region include; Gavin Jennings (ALP), Gordon Rich-Phillips (LIB), Adem Somyurek (ALP), David Limbrick (LDP) and Tien Kieu (ALP).

Members for Carrum:

Member Party Term
  Ian Cathie Labor 1976–1988
  Mal Sandon Labor 1988–1996
  David Lean Liberal 1996–1999
  Jenny Lindell Labor 1999–2010
  Donna Bauer Liberal 2010–2014
  Sonya Kilkenny Labor 2014–present

MLC's for South Eastern Metropolitan Region

Member Party Term Member Party Term Member Party Term Member Party Term Member Party Term
  Gavin Jennings Labor 2006–present   Gordon Rich-Phillips Liberal 2006–present   Adem Somyurek Labor 2006–present   Inga Peulich Liberal 2006–present   Bob Smith Labor 2006–2010
  Lee Tarlamis Labor 2010–2014
  Nina Springle Greens 2014–present



Lake Carramar, Lake Illawong and Lake Legana are collectively known as the Quiet Lakes region. The canal system that runs through most of Patterson Lakes is known as the Tidal Canal. Landmarks inside the Tidal Canal include Clipper Island, Mariners Island, Staten Island, Rhode Island, Barellen Harbours and Schooner Bay.

Other landmarks of Patterson Lakes include Wannarkladdin Wetlands, Patterson River and Eel Race Drain (later becomes Kananook Creek.) Patterson Lakes Marina has facilities at the Town Centre (Inner Harbour), Runaway Bay (Middle Harbour) and Whaler's Cove (Western Harbour.)[28] Patterson River is managed by Parks Victoria, while the Tidal Canal system and the Quiet Lakes are managed by Melbourne Water.


Patterson Lakes has a temperate climate similar to that of Melbourne, however it is usually 2 °C cooler than the Melbourne CBD. In many cases, Patterson Lakes is one of the first areas of the greater Melbourne area to feel the effect of the cool change weather effect that occurs during the summer season.

Walking & cycling trails[edit]


  • Roy Dore Reserve
  • Adelong Court Reserve[29]
  • Arrunga Court Reserve
  • Gladesville Boulevard Reserve
  • Kalang Court Reserve
  • Legana Court Reserve
  • John Lindsay Reserve (named after a paralympian called John Lindsay in 1996)
  • Patterson River (managed by Parks Victoria)


Indigenous floral species include the silver wattle, samphire, lightwood, blackwood, black she-oak, river red gum, spike wattle, hedge wattle, scrub she-oak, jagged fireweed, silver top wallaby grass, Australian salt grass and the blue tussock grass. Non-indigenous floral species include the sheep's burr, angled onion, lesser joyweed, broom spurge, common swamp wallaby grass, pointed centrolepis, common spikerush and small spikerush.[30]


Reptile species found in Patterson Lakes include the Bougainville's skink, grass skink, tree dragon, copperhead snake and tiger snake. Aquatic species include the striped marsh frog, water rat, platypus, bream, flathead, tupong, Australian salmon, leatherjacket, yelloweye mullet, silver trevally, black crab, spider crab, eel, bass yabbies, mussels and pippies. Bird species include the nankeen (rufous) night heron, white-faced heron, chestnut teal, straw-necked ibis, pacific black duck, pacific gull, silver gull, magpie-lark, Australian pelican, little pied cormorant, royal spoonbill, masked lapwing, whiskered (marsh) tern and the caspian tern.[30]


The Patterson River abounds with fish. Considered that there have been several reports of illegal fishing over the last few years, the fish always seem to fight back in this popular waterway. A number of charter companies operate from Patterson River. Bream and a few other varieties of fish can be sourced from the Tidal Canal and Patterson River systems.[30]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Patterson Lakes (State Suburb)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 3 December 2017. Edit this at Wikidata
  2. ^ "Postcode for Patterson Lakes, Victoria (near Melbourne)". Postcodes Australia. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  3. ^ "Residential Property Sales & Rentals - Patterson Lakes Real Estate, Victoria". Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  4. ^ "History of the Creek and its Reserves". Archived from the original on 13 October 2012. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  5. ^ "The Bunurong People | City of Casey". Archived from the original on 11 October 2012. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  6. ^ a b Jones, Michael. Frankston: Resort to City. Allen & Unwin: Sydney. 1989. ISBN 0-04-442114-1
  7. ^ "Carrum - A Brief Local History. - The Original Carrum Cowboys". 11 May 2008. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  8. ^ a b "Land and Environment: The Beginnings of Patterson Lakes". Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^ "Patterson Lakes Canoe Club website". Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  12. ^ "Patterson Lakes Radio Model Yacht Club". 6 November 2011. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  13. ^ "Community Directories". Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  14. ^ Premier Postal History, Post Office List, retrieved 11 April 2008
  15. ^ a b [1] Archived 30 March 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  16. ^ "About Carrum Rowing Club". Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  17. ^ "National Water Sports Centre Ski Club". Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  18. ^ "About The Club". Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  19. ^ "Patterson Lakes Outrigger Club Inc". Archived from the original on 1 October 2011. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  20. ^ "Patterson Lakes library opens - Photos - Mordialloc Chelsea Leader". Archived from the original on 12 March 2012. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  21. ^ "Decade of campaigns proves people power's a winner for tight-knit community crusaders". Retrieved 24 May 2020.
  22. ^ "The Residents Association of Patterson Lakes Inc". Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  23. ^ "Patterson Lakes education". Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  24. ^ "Home - Public Transport Victoria". Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  25. ^ Scholte, Hannah (7 December 2016). "Noice, different, unusual Kath and Kim home sells for more than $1.4 million". NewsComAu. Retrieved 19 May 2019.
  26. ^ [2][dead link]
  27. ^ "Andrew Bogut visits Patterson Lakes Primary School - Photos - Leader News". Archived from the original on 18 March 2012. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  28. ^ "Marina Berth Melbourne, Boat Storage Melbourne, Marina Melbourne". Patterson Lakes Marina. Archived from the original on 16 October 2012. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  29. ^ "Kingston City Council, Melbourne, Australia Directory". 1 September 2002. Archived from the original on 30 April 2013. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
  30. ^ a b c [3] Archived 27 March 2011 at the Wayback Machine