The 10.12 hectare Anthony Beale Reserve is located next to historic St Katherine's Church in St. Helena, and enjoys beautiful views because of its elevation. The reserve comprises the historic St Katherine’s Church, two sporting ovals, a playground and remnant bushland. The bushland area is adjacent to St Helena roadside and is 3.36 hectares in size.
Anthony Beale took up land near the Plenty River around 1841 where he built his home, which he named St Helena after the island of Saint Helena where he was born. His wife, Katherine, died at the estate in 1856, and in 1858 Beale built a small private chapel in her memory in their garden, built out of bricks produced on the estate. Beale died in 1865 and is buried with his wife and other family members in the adjoining Church cemetery. The chapel was later turned into a parish church by Beale’s son-in-law. Artist Walter Withers, of the Heidelberg School, is also buried in the Church's small cemetery.
Banyule Council acknowledges the Wurundjeri-willam people, the traditional custodians of Banyule.
Flora and Fauna
On the St Helena Road side, the reserve includes a small but relatively intact area of remnant Grassy Dry Forest/Box Stringybark Woodland, which is listed as endangered within the greater Melbourne region. This is a great spot to look out for indigenous wildflowers, such as Greenhood Orchids (Pterostylis sp.), Chocolate Lilies (Arthropodium strictum) and Bulbine Lilies (Bulbine bulbosa).
Although small, the bushland is also a refuge for wildlife as part of the Greenhills bushland complex, in conjunction Brown’s Reserve to the west and Settlers Park to the east. Large, old gum trees are home to birdlife such as the Common Bronzewing and King Parrot.
These values are managed by the Banyule Bushland Management Unit, with assistance from local volunteers. If you are interested in helping out with management, you can join the Friends of Anthony Beale Reserve.
Features & Facilities