Hedgeley Dene is one of Malvern's most attractive and popular gardens, situated amidst beautiful residential gardens and period houses.
As an established and well-maintained combination of lawn, deciduous and broadleaf trees and an ornamental lake, Hedgeley Dene Gardens link Central Park and the Gardiners Creek valley parklands. The gardens extend along what was once a watercourse alignment, dropping gradually from the ornamental lake in the south-west to a simple pocket of green land with deciduous trees at Stanley Street.
Hedgeley Dene Gardens is situated on an early watercourse. In 1877, solicitor Edward Charsley purchased farmland with existing cottages, naming it after his English birthplace, Hedgerley, and subsequently adding a boathouse. A golf course later traversed the farm, using the natural waterholes as water hazards. From 1902 to 1911 the Maidment family used the property as a dairy farm, and the waterholes and dam – which became popular for fishing and yabbying – were known as Maidment’s Lakes.
Malvern Council purchased 8.5 acres (3.4 hectares) when the land was subdivided in 1911, initially using it as a quarry for sand and clay, then as a municipal tip, until it was cleared after the First World War. Returned soldiers planted Turkey Oaks, and the gardens were developed from 1924 following a plan prepared by Malvern’s curator Francis L. Reeves. Approximately 1,500 plants, many from Council’s nursery, were planted to complement existing eucalypts and poplars remaining from the original farm.
Council hired workers left unemployed by the Great Depression to lay out the Gardens between Glenbrook and Ferncroft Avenues in 1933, and electric lights were installed at this time. After a period of neglect, new trees were planted and the lake cleared, and in 1980 it won a Garden State Competition. The Gardens has been used as a backdrop for local television dramas, and is recognised on the Victorian Heritage Register.
For more information, contact our Stonnington History Centre.
Location and Transport
Located on Kardella Street and Glenbrook Avenue, the gardens are just a 400m walk from the No. 624 Bus route down Wattletree Road and 900m from the Darling Train Station on the Glen Waverley line.