Clifford Park

 Clifford Park

A story about Warrandyte's Heritage would not be complete without a reference to Clifford Park, in Wonga Park North.

The Clifford Park Activity Centre is a 20 hectare public access preserved bushland region 35 km NE of Melbourne.

Surrounded by hundreds of hectares of the Warrandyte State Park, it is owned by Scouting Australia - Victoria, and members of the public may explore it by foot at any time. There is access through it to the Yarra River precinct at the northern boundary.

Clifford Park, honouring the late Lord Clifford, is perhaps the most significant scouting site in Australia, having been the location of two Jamborees and the World Rover Moot.

Significant dates

Early 1900s Initial development of the area for grazing and farming, known as Yarra Brae Farm, about 350 hectares

Scouts permitted to use the area,  part of Yarra Brae Farm

1942 Lord Clifford became new owner of Farm

1948 Lord Clifford allowed about 100 hectares to be used by scouts for the 3rd Pan Pacific Jamboree, known as "Yarra Brae Jamboree", attended by 11,000 scouts

1955 5th Pan Pacific Jamboree, the "Clifford Park Jamboree", also known as the "Mudboree", 16,000 scouts

1962 7th World Rover Moot, attended by 1000 River Scouts from worldwide

1967 Yarra Brae Farm sold at auction after death of Lord Clifford. The new owners continued to allow scouts the continuing use of the area surrounding the old parade ground along the river

1983  Scouts Australia, Victorian Branch, purchased  the present 20 hectares freehold property, became known as "Clifford Park"

1983 Victorian Government resumed the whole Yarra River frontage to become part of the Warrandyte State Park, used mainly at weekends as a scout camping and activity venue

1995 In an effort to be more proactive in the community the Committee of Management decided to sponsor a new organisation, The Friends of Clifford Park, and open the property not just to scouts, but to the wider public as the "Clifford Park Activity Centre".

With the support of Manningham City Council, both Federal and State governments and TAFE institutes at Box Hill, Swinburne and Holmesglen, the Friends have helped transform the park into a place of adventure, excitement and passive recreation -- a centre that can accommodate the needs of both scouting and non-scouting communities and one of which the whole community can justly be proud.

With full catering being available, Clifford Park also offers seminar facilities for government, local government, education and corporate entities who wish to conduct programs or staff development activities.

All developments to this stage have been carried out according to a master plan approved by the City of Manningham, which emphasizes the values of environment, activities for youth and scouting heritage.

There is comprehensive information about Clfford Park at the following Website, to which acknowledgement is given for some of the historical background in this Heritage Project.

Clifford Park Heritage Pictures

1948 - Entrance to Jamboree (Source: Clifford Park website)

1955/56 - Jamboree opening ceremony
(Source: Clifford Park website)

1955/56 - Jamboree action
(Source: Clifford Park website)

1955/56 - Jamboree Arch
(Source: Clifford Park website)

Clifford Park - 2010 Pictures by the author 

Abseilling tower

Outdoor Stage

Main Entrance

Canoe Launching Ramp on Yarra



Lasseter Steps

Remains of of foundations


Federation Valley

Style, for access to State Park

Steep cliffs on Yarra

Map (Source: Clifford Park website)

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