wonguim wilam (Warrandyte River Reserve)

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wonguim wilam is located between Kangaroo Ground-Warrandyte Bridge and the Warrandyte Bakery. Manningham Council manages this land that forms part of the Warrandyte River Reserve.

wonguim wilam is one of Manningham's most popular parks and a major tourist destination. The local community and visitors often use the park for informal recreation activities.

On Tuesday, 25 September 2018, Council adopted a community-informed Masterplan for the park, proposing a series of upgrades for the area.

Key features of the Masterplan include:

  • additional picnic facilities
  • seating and barbecues
  • an improved path layout
  • outdoor fitness equipment
  • new drinking fountains
  • signage
  • landscaping
  • public art elements

wonguim wilam is located between Kangaroo Ground-Warrandyte Bridge and the Warrandyte Bakery. Manningham Council manages this land that forms part of the Warrandyte River Reserve.

wonguim wilam is one of Manningham's most popular parks and a major tourist destination. The local community and visitors often use the park for informal recreation activities.

On Tuesday, 25 September 2018, Council adopted a community-informed Masterplan for the park, proposing a series of upgrades for the area.

Key features of the Masterplan include:

  • additional picnic facilities
  • seating and barbecues
  • an improved path layout
  • outdoor fitness equipment
  • new drinking fountains
  • signage
  • landscaping
  • public art elements
  • redesigning the car park
  • upgraded playground

The park is officially named wonguim wilam (phonetically pronounced as 'WON-GOOM-WIL-LUM'. This Woi-wurrung word is in the language of the Wurrundjeri Woi-wurrung people, the First Peoples of the Manningham area. The name is not capitalised, and instead written in all lower case, a convention adopted by the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung people. The name translates in English to 'Boomerang Place'.

  • What is happening with the ceramic tiles that were previously in the park?

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    [Click heading link to see full article with photos]

    The small ceramic tiles were a great part of the previous space, and we had hoped to reinstate them. We spoke to the artist who led the community artwork, and they let us know that over 1,000 children were involved! But, unfortunately, they were too fragile to be removed and reinstalled.

    The larger ceramic tiles were able to be salvaged, and we've offered these to the Warrandyte Historical Society.

    The new play space will have a water play area, where we're installing the community art mosaic pebbles created at this year's Warrandyte Pottery Expo. We also plan to reinstate the ceramic drinking fountains within the new design.

    We've kept both the artist and our community reference group for the project informed during this process.

    Artwork that was unable to be successfully removed from the old play space.

    Larger mosaic tiles from the old play space.

    Ceramic hand-made pebbles.

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  • Manningham recognised for the inclusive naming process of wonguim wilam

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    Manningham Council has been honoured for acknowledging traditional owner language, preserving culture, and inclusive engagement at the Asia Pacific Spatial Excellence Awards.

    Council received the ‘Excellence in place naming’ award for naming wonguim wilam* (pronounced won-goom-wil-lum) in Warrandyte. The award recognises the process taken to engage the community and respect the First Nations cultural heritage of the area, acknowledging traditional owner language.

    In accepting the award on behalf of Council, Mayor Cr. Michelle Kleinert said

    “This award is for everyone involved in the naming process – it has been a community effort.”

    The Mayor thanked Aunty Doreen Garvey-Wandin, Aunty Gail Smith, Aunty Julieanne Axford, and the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung Corporation for their support and guidance throughout the process.

    “This historic moment is the start of many more naming opportunities” said Cr. Kleinert.

    She also thanked Geographic Names Victoria for nominating Council and their advice and expertise in the naming process.

    This wouldn’t have been possible without the participation and support of local organisations including The Lion’s Club of Warrandyte, the Warrandyte Historical Society, and the Warrandyte Community Association.

    The naming of wonguim wilam involved several Council departments, who collaborated to actively consult, engage, and educate the community throughout the process.

    A playground refurbishment is underway, and an official park opening will be held once completed.

    * wonguim wilam is written in all lowercase

  • Construction beginning for the play space at wonguim wilam

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    Stage two of construction of the play space at wonguim wilam, Warrandyte, will begin on Tuesday, 15 March.

    “Stage one created new open space parklands, picnic spaces, an exercise station and a renewed car park. This next stage is even more exciting. This is all for the children! They will love the new play space, and the artwork will add even more colour and vibrance to this beautiful area,” said Mayor Cr Michelle Kleinert.

    The upgrade will include:

    • a new play space
    • a new shelter, drinking fountain, BBQ and picnic area
    • new art, including community pottery pieces created at the Warrandyte Pottery Expo.

    “Warrandyte is a passionate community with great appreciation and respect for its heritage. The new play space is designed to connect children with nature and offer play opportunities for children of all ages and abilities,” said Cr Kleinert.

    The pathway through the play space will be closed during the construction, which is expected to take around three months, depending on potential weather delays.

    The Victorian Government supports this project through the Local Parks Revitalisation Program contributing $300,000 to the project, with Council allocating $700,000 in its annual capital works budget.

  • Photo Exhibition at Tuffy Hut

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    Our latest photo exhibition at Tuffy Hut is now open. Make sure you check out these spectacular images next time you're there.

    More photos in our gallery.

  • Official name for wonguim wilam, Warrandyte.

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    We're excited to announce the name wonguim wilam has been officially gazetted (page 31).

    This is a proud achievement in reconciliation for Manningham. The name was endorsed at the September Council Meeting and was submitted to the Geographic Names Office for approval.

    Check out the video for its history, the story behind the name and how to pronounce it correctly.

    In the coming months, we will be installing interpretive signages on site to tell the story and history of the name, First Nations people, Warrandyte Bridge, former tennis courts and recognise the Warrandyte Lions Club's contribution.

    Stage two of the upgrade with the new playspace, BBQ shelter and artwork is progressing with works to commence on site in February 2022.


  • wonguim wilam

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    The upgraded park along the Yarra River in Warrandyte, locally known as Lions Park, will finally be given an official Woi-wurrung name to reflect the language, culture and heritage of the local Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung people.

    The name wonguim wilam was officially endorsed at Council Meeting last month and will be submitted to the Geographic Names Victoria for endorsement.

    Driven by our commitment to reconciliation, we have consulted with key stakeholders including the Lions Club of Warrandyte, Masterplan Community Reference Group and the Wurundjer iWoi-Wurrung Cultural Heritage Aboriginal Corporation.

    We thank the Lions Club of Warrandyte for not only maintain the park and tennis courts over the 40-plus years, but for their willingness to lead our community in supporting this name change.

    Check out our full media release and frequently asked questions on this page.

  • A Woi-wurrung name for park in Warrandyte

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    The upgraded park and land along the Yarra River in Warrandyte, locally known as Lions Park, will be given an official Woi-wurrung name to reflect the language, culture and heritage of the local Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung people.

    Following earlier consultation with key stakeholders, last week Manningham Council met with the Warrandyte Lions Club and Masterplan Community Reference Group, who showed support to adopt a Woi-wurrung name for the park.

    Manningham Mayor Cr Andrew Conlon said Council’s commitment to reconciliation is underpinned by respect for the rich and complex nature of the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung culture and heritage and thanked the Warrandyte Lions Club for taking up this important opportunity in reconciliation.

    “While Council has committed to creating equity, equality and building relationships, and is close to finalising our Reconciliation Action Plan, reconciliation requires a commitment from the whole community,” he said.

    “The Lions Club have shown their willingness to be a community leader by supporting this name change.”

    In the coming weeks the precinct will be given a Woi-wurrung name approved by the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung Cultural Heritage Aboriginal Corporation, honouring the original owners of the land.

    “We would like to thank past and present members of the Warrandyte Lions Club of the last 40-plus years for maintaining the park and the tennis courts, as well as contributing $45,000 towards the latest exercise equipment,” Cr Conlon said.

    Warrandyte Lions Club President David Englefield said it was an honour to look after the park and provide a much loved gathering space for the community over the last four decades.

    “The Lions Club has always been looking to make a difference and improve the lives of the Warrandyte people and others in our community,” he said.

    “Reconciliation is important and this is an incredible opportunity for us to work with Council and with due consultation, provide leadership in honouring First Nations communities.”

    Works on the playspace upgrade are anticipated to begin early next year and completed by mid-2022.

    The completed upgrade of the park will feature significant signage taking visitors on a journey through its history and the involvement of the Warrandyte Lions Club.

    Manningham will continue to work with the Warrandyte Lions Club on recognising their contributions on a plaque and interpretive signage.

    Manningham will continue to work with the Warrandyte Lions Club, Warrandyte Historical Society and the Warrandyte Community Association on the maintenance of the park to ensure it honours its past and present custodians.

  • Colourful art piece installed

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    Check out this colourful art piece next time you’re down at Lions Park along the Warrandyte River Reserve.

    During the Warrandtye Pottery Expo this year, Warrandyte ceramic artist Jane Annois and Clay Talk at Montsalvat led a children’s art activity in creating these colourful ‘leaves’ representing leaves from the local area. In June, our landscaper Crafted Landscape installed the new art element along the path edging by the new shelter under the bridge.

    Special thanks to Clayworks Potters Supply in providing the clay, colours and firing, and Clay Talk at Montsalvat for donating their time with the children.

    The Warrandyte Pottery Expo is an annual event on the last weekend of February. It is proudly supported by the Manningham Arts Grants.

Page last updated: 30 May 2022, 04:00 PM