City of South Barwon

City of South Barwon

Location in Victoria
Population 43,780 (1992)[1]
 • Density 264.69/km2 (685.55/sq mi)
Established 1863
Area 165.4 km2 (63.9 sq mi)
Council seat Belmont
Region Geelong
County Grant
LGAs around City of South Barwon:
Newtown Newtown Geelong
Barrabool City of South Barwon Bellarine
Barrabool Bass Strait Bass Strait

The City of South Barwon was a local government area in Victoria, Australia, which contained a number of Geelong suburbs south of the Barwon River, and extending to Torquay in the south and Barwon Heads to the east. The city covered an area of 165.4 square kilometres (63.9 sq mi), and existed from 1863 until 1994.


South Barwon was formed as a road district, when it was severed from the Corporation of Geelong on 2 June 1857. It then covered 9 square miles (23 km2) and 600 households.[2] It was incorporated as a borough on 21 October 1863, and became a town on 24 December 1874, when it was amalgamated with the Connewarre Road District, and now covered 64 square miles (170 km2) and 1714 people.[2] It was proclaimed as a city on 6 December 1974.[3]

The first council offices were on Mount Pleasant Road, in Belmont, which opened in 1884 at a cost of 1400 pounds.[2] New chambers were built in 1970, and in 1974 plans were made for a new Civic Centre, on the corner of the Princes Highway and Reynolds Road, Belmont. Plans were approved in 1976, a tender was accepted and the first sod turned in August 1977, and on May 24, 1978 it was officially opened.[2] The Mount Pleasant Road offices became a community centre. After amalgamation, the Civic Centre was used by the City of Greater Geelong as offices, before being sold to Barwon Health.

On 18 May 1993, significant proportions of its land area was annexed to the newly created City of Greater Geelong, despite concerns expressed by the coastal town of Torquay that it was a separate community of interest from Geelong. The Shire of Barrabool, which had been significantly reduced by the creation of Greater Geelong and had lost much of its rates base, joined Torquay residents in suggesting the Kennett Liberal government create a coastal shire, which united Torquay and Anglesea. On 9 March 1994, the City of South Barwon was abolished, and, along with the remainder of the Shire of Barrabool and parts of the Shire of Winchelsea, was merged into the newly created Surf Coast Shire, which established its administrative centre at Torquay.


The City of South Barwon was divided into four wards on 19 May 1978, each of which elected three councillors:

Towns and localities


Year Population
1954 11,016
1958 14,520*
1961 16,794
1966 22,049
1971 26,764
1976 32,411
1981 35,307
1986 38,019
1991 40,772

* Estimate in the 1958 Victorian Year Book.


  1. Australian Bureau of Statistics, Victoria Office (1994). Victorian Year Book. pp. 49–52. ISSN 0067-1223.
  2. 1 2 3 4 Notes on Belmont. Roy H Holden Accessed at the Geelong Heritage Centre
  3. Victorian Municipal Directory. Brunswick: Arnall & Jackson. 1992. pp. 481–482. Accessed at State Library of Victoria, La Trobe Reading Room.

Coordinates: 38°10′S 144°20′E / 38.167°S 144.333°E / -38.167; 144.333

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