Cressy is situated on the intersection of the Hamilton
Highway and the Colac Ballarat Road, the Gateway to the Western Plains. It
is an agricultural area with mainly cereal and oil seed crops and sheep
farming. A number of significant lakes and wetlands surround the area
while the town itself has an interesting history.
The Frenchmanís Inn Hotel, built in 1839 by
Frederick Jean Duverney, licenced 24 April 1841 - the first licence
granted in Victoria. The Frenchmanís Inn can lay claim to being the
oldest hotel in Victoria, however it does not have the oldest running
licence. Story has it, Fred Duverneyís son, the worse for drink,
rode on horseback through the streets of Cressy stoning the roof tops
of the Ďnon-drinkersí homes. Because of this action, the hotel was
de-licenced for one year.
A number of lakes and wetlands including Ramsar
wetlands within a short drive. These waters are significant as a
resting place for migratory birds as well as breeding grounds. Plenty
to see here for the keen bird watcher. The lakes are also popular
during duck season.
The Woady Yaloak River has its headwaters near
Ballarat and flows into Lake Corangamite. A diversion scheme diverts
some waters into the Barwon River. The river is a pleasant place to
A number of old buildings survive. Of particular
interest is the lovely bluestone Presbyterian Church. Plans are
underway to use this building as a museum at a future date.
The Cressy Airfield. A training station was set up at
Cressy in 1939. The station consisted of a number of buildings for
living quarters, kitchens, administration, medical, stores and
workshops. A bombing target was set up in Lake Corangamite and this
area was used for bombing and air gunnery practice. The station
expanded considerably over the war years but was closed on the
cessation of hostilities. Remains of the runways, building foundations
and an underground tank can still be seen.
The Cressy Common on the corner of Yarima Road and the
Hamilton Highway. This site contains some significant remnant native
flora including the Native Orchid. Itís also home to the legless
The Cressy Picnic Area. Located in a small garden at
the centre of the town, near toilet facilities and the general store.
A pleasant place to stop and take a break from your journey.