|Population||3,871 (2011 census)|
|Elevation||2 m (7 ft)|
Pearcedale is a township and coastal rural locality in Victoria, Australia, 49 km south-east of Melbourne's central business district. Its local government areas are the City of Casey and the Shire of Mornington Peninsula. A bus service operates to and from Frankston railway station via Baxter. At the 2011 Census, Pearcedale had a population of 3,871.
Pearcedale is a township and rural locality on the northwestern corner of Western Port, in the northern extremities of the Mornington Peninsula. The land is relatively flat with a rich and sandy soil type ideal for market gardening. Its coastline on Watson Inlet, west of Quail Island, consists of lush mangroves, creek estuaries and canals. These wetlands are of international significance and accordingly are protected as part of the Yaringa Marine National Park and the United Nations Ramsar Convention.
Pearcedale was originally called Langwarrin and was also known at various times as Langwarrin Estate or Old Langwarrin. When the Mornington and Stony Point railway lines opened in the late 1880s, the railway station near the Military Camp (...now a Flora and Fauna Reserve) was named Langwarrin. A new town developed east of the railway station and was locally called New Langwarrin. A meeting of rate payers was held in November 1905 and it was voted to rename the original town Pearcedale, to avoid confusion with this new settlement of New Langwarrin. The name Pearcedale came from local landowner Nathaniel Pearce. Nathaniel and his wife Mary Grace are first listed in the Shire of Cranbourne Rate Books in 1894, when they purchased an orchard on 26 acres (about 10 hectares) at Langwarrin Estate. They had eight children. Mary was a midwife and helped deliver many babies in the area.
The town of Pearcedale had a slow beginning. In 1889 it had a few shops and a Post Office, Public Hall and Primary School. However the depression affected the town and the School closed in 1892, 38 years before the depression began, and the Post Office in 1893. The School re-opened in 1902 and the Post Office in 1907. The original hall burnt down and the replacement was opened on August 23, 1918. This event was witnessed by 400 people, who were entertained with a concert and a dance which finished at 4.00am. The Methodist Church was opened in 1918, the Anglican Church in 1938. Other Community milestones include the establishment of the Tennis club in the 1920s, the Cricket club in 1921, the Football club in 1929, the Progress Association in 1937 and the Fire Brigade in 1940. Electricity was connected in 1957, the Guides and Scouts both formed in 1957, the R.S.L in 1958 and the Infant Welfare Centre in 1961. Town water was connected in 1962.
A meteorite known as Cranbourne meteorite No.11 was found 2 kilometres north north-east of Pearcedale and 5 kilometres east-south east of the Langwarrin Railway Station. The meteorite weighed a massive 762 kilograms and was reportedly found in 1903, just below the surface of the ground. The find was not reported at the time and, from all accounts the meteorite was kept in the possession of the finder until 1938, when it was sold to the U.S. National Museum, Washington.
Another known as Cranbourne meteorite No.12 was discovered in April 1982 it was donated to the then Shire Council for display purposes. This meteorite was first found in 1927 but only recently came to scientific notice. Weighing 23 kilograms it has been registered in the collections of the National Museum of Victoria and is on a long term loan to the City of Casey, for display purposes. It was found on a property located on the north-east corner of Pearcedale Road, Pearcedale.
In 2013 Cranbourne meteorite 13 was found at the intersection of North Road and Pearcedale Road. CSIRO took possession shortly after and it has since been classified as the third largest Mars based meteorite found in the southern hemisphere.
The town is surrounded by many horse and hobby properties, market gardens, cattle, egg & poultry farms. Much of the locality is zoned as "green wedge" and therefore future urban development in the region is limited. Pearcedale Primary School is notable as being the regional school responsible for the teaching of children impaired by hearing loss. The school has an enrolment of over 600 students and is widely acknowledged as being of high standard.
Local attractions include the multiple award winning Moonlit Sanctuary Wildlife Conservation Park, which operates during the daytime and has special evening tours that allow visitors to see endangered Australian animals. Moonlit Sanctuary is part of the Official Mornington Peninsula Tourism Guide.
The RSPCA Peninsula Adoption Centre & Shelter is based in Pearcedale. Here employees and volunteers care for homeless cats and dogs as well as rescued horses and ponies from the Peninsula region. There is also a public veterinary clinic and Shire of Mornington Peninsula pound in operation at the facility.
One of the largest herb farms in the southern hemisphere, Coolibah Herbs, is based in Pearcedale. It supplies washed salad greens, mixed leaves and a variety of culinary herbs and vegetables to leading companies in the food service sector. It has numerous farms across the Mornington Peninsula and Gippsland.
The Pearcedale Farmers Market operates outdoors on every third Saturday of the month 8:00 am to 1:00 pm. It specialises in regional, seasonal produce, including fresh vegetables, grass-fed beef, free-range eggs, bread straight from the oven, jams and chutney, ready made pasta and curries, locally produced cheeses and exotic and indigenous plants.
Pearcedale Village Shopping Centre on Baxter-Tooradin Road is a small retail precinct that includes a chemist, baker, butcher, newsagency, hairdresser, hardware store, beauty therapist, accountant, medical centre, Bendigo Bank, BP service station, licensed post office and a small supermarket/liquor store. Take-away food is catered for with a milk bar, pizza shop and fish & chip shop. The sole restaurant of the township, Moodi's Cafe, is highly rated for its food, coffee and friendly service.
Pearcedale has its own Country Fire Authority station that draws on the local community for volunteers.
With its close proximity to both Cranbourne and Mornington racecourses Pearcedale is home to numerous racehorse trainers, jockeys and others associated with Victoria's thoroughbred racing industry. A number of greyhound and harness racing trainers also reside in the area.
A variety of horse trails and private agistment facilities provide many equestrian enthusiasts with the opportunity to enjoy their craft. Pearcedale Pony Club, located off Tyabb-Tooradin Road, hold a rally for its young members each month. The club is affiliated with the Pony Club Association of Victoria.
The town has an Australian Rules football club competing in the Mornington Peninsula Nepean Football League. Pearcedale Cricket Club compete in the Mornington Peninsula Cricket Association and Pearcedale Tennis Club compete in the Peninsula Tennis Association. The town also has a netball club.
Pearcedale is only serviced by one primary school:
A primary catholic school is located in nearby Somerville:
For their secondary education local students are required to commute to several schools in the surrounding area including:
- Pearcedale (Western Port Tourism)
- Western Port Biosphere
- Moonlit Sanctuary Wildlife Conservation Park
- Western Port Tourist & Visitor Information Centre
- The Official Tourism Website of the Mornington Peninsula
- RSPCA Peninsula
- Coolibah Herbs
- Peninsula Pages - Pearcedale Farmers Market