Nutritionist & Life Coach
Meeting all requirements to call myself so (i.e. none)
Published September 24th 2012
One of Melbourne’s hidden suburbs
Wedged between Essendon and Moonee Ponds lies a small suburb-within-a-suburb named Aberfeldie. Occupying a relatively tiny space between the Maribyrnong River, Buckley St and Waverley Rd there is a surprising amount to do in a seemingly sleepy little borough.
Firstly there is no shortage of million dollar mansions to marvel at, whether a postmodern rendered square or a more traditional redbrick operation from days of yore. As the suburb rests in a particularly undulating part of the Maribyrnong River valley - and is bordered by the confluence of that river with Steele Creek - there are a number of houses afforded a wonderful view courtesy of the terrain.
A number of parks border the river, including Boathouse Park. In this park the Boathouse Restaurant, refurbished in recent years, also does a roaring trade with wonderful views of Aberfeldie's little brown river.
The Boathouse Restaurant in Boathouse Park
The river itself acts as something of a Mecca for the athletically inclined with Essendon Rowing Club resting on the banks of the river alongside Aberfeldie Park. Aberfeldie Park is home to a soccer club, a men's and women's cricket club, an athletic club and a soccer club. Also bordered by a 1.9km running trail replete with a substantial hill climb, you'll find this park to be weekend warrior fitness heaven.
Halfway up the Aberfeldie Park Hill
If 1.9km is not enough running for you, then you can join hundreds of pavement pounders who enjoy the (roughly) 4km challenge of the 'Bridge-to-Bridge' section of the Maribyrnong River Trail. From the Maribyrnong Rd bridge to the Afton St foot bridge, this well-lit and palm tree clad track provides a fitness challenge for all the locals as well as tempting them with views of the Anglers Tavern's beer garden .
The Anglers Tavern taunts the fitness fanatic
The track is wide enough for cyclists, joggers and recreational strollers to comfortably share without having to compete with fast moving traffic.
The banks of the Maribyrnong River toward the Afton St end are graced with a barbecue area and greensward (Riverside Park), allowing for family picnics and a safe place for the kids to play. A little further up on Afton St (the most challenging hill climb in the suburb), one can gain access to the Steele Creek trail. Whether we can include this in a description of Aberfeldie is up for debate given that Google Maps gives it to Essendon West and Wikipedia gives it to Keilor East. Hmmm reminds me of Alsace-Lorraine…
The Afton St footbridge
Of course, with all those palatial mansions and outdoor recreation areas there must be a number of green thumbs (and also rich people who pay not-so-rich people to have green thumbs), so the nursery Poyntons of Essendon (who clearly decided that the name 'Poyntons of Aberfeldie' would just confuse people) nestles snugly at the bottom of Vida St, just by the river. Poytons isn't just for gardeners though, with its café providing a place to go for coffee, cake or something more substantial.
I must admit that I had never heard of Aberfeldie until one of my friends moved into the area over a decade ago. It in fact does not have its own postcode, sharing 3040 with the much larger and more well-known Essendon. There is however quite a bit to Aberfeldie and if you can afford the rent or the seven figure mortgage then get out there. You could of course visit it for free; it's not yet a gated community.
But Aberfeldie only became a suburb in the 90's.
Up until then it was just a section of the suburb of Essendon. The estate was named Aberfeldie but just an estate within the suburb was Essendon (not unlike the Marlodge Estate.)
That is why it is Poynton's of Essendon - because when it opened it was in Essendon. Just like it is the Essendon Rowing Club - it was always in Essendon.