Historic town lures newcomers with green space and affordable property
STORY: MARGARET LINLEY PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED
The Princes Highway leads into this beautiful Western District town with its wide centre reserve boasting an avenue of mature English oaks. If Terang was a colour, it would be green. Visit on a spring day and the sound of lawnmowers forms a background hum. Everywhere is lush grass. It is a town where people take pride in keeping things lovely.
If you are feeling a sense of déjà vu, and you’ve been travelling west along the highway, you’ll know that it’s because Terang mirrors the style and historical prosperity of Camperdown.
Here you will find a clock tower and war memorial, a rose garden and a band rotunda; all signs of historical wealth and pride.
Some of Terang’s trees are so impressive they have a National Trust heritage listing.
The town of 2288 residents is one of Victoria’s oldest, predating the gold rush of the mid 1800s. It has always been a dairy farming town. Saw milling was also an important early industry.
Located on a volcanic basalt plain, Terang has two crater lakes; one of which has been drained and now forms part of the golf course. The other, Lake Keilambete, is a good spot for fishing.
Among the historic homes in Terang is the beautiful country house and garden Blauvelt Park, pictured on this page. Originally a Presbyterian manse, it has been transformed into a unique venue – the perfect escape for families and groups of friends, or for more formal occasions such as weddings. Blauvelt Park’s eight acres of grounds and garden include a cypress maze and a small birch wood.
There is a smorgasbord of sports on offer in this community. A banquet, perhaps. Golf, croquet and bowls form a handy and almost resort-like hub in the main street. There’s also horse-and harness-racing, swimming, table tennis, netball, football and cricket. The secondary school has 160 students and yet offers the impressive choice of 15 sports.
“Some of Terang’s trees are so impressive they have a National Trust heritage listing.”
Terang College is a P-12 school operating as two campuses. There is a total enrolment of 349 with VET and VCAL offered in addition to the VCE. There is also the option of a Catholic primary school for those looking for faith-based education.
Residents are fortunate to have a 24-hour hospital in town. There are urgent and acute care theatre services, midwifery and palliative care. There is also a nursing home.
Terang’s railway station is heritage listed and is on the Warrnambool line. It is possible to catch a train to Melbourne, stop at only 10 stations along the way, and arrive in about three hours. Camperdown is 15 minutes by train. Buses service the links between towns.
Alternatively, for those wanting, or needing to, drive to Melbourne, it’s worth noting that a $6.4 million traffic works program is underway, creating overtaking lanes between Camperdown and Colac. And a recent major upgrade to a double lane highway makes the drive between Colac and Geelong safer. Government investment in road structure and transport links is encouraging to people considering a move to the region. We anticipate that the current 2.5-hour drive time will be reduced once the overtaking lanes are installed, or at the least, it will be a more comfortable drive.
Terang has the usual retail services such as a butcher, baker, café and hairdresser. The Terang and District Co-op is responsible for the IGA and Mitre 10. There is also a monthly market with home-made goods and fresh produce.
For those seeking a move to Terang, it could make better financial sense to buy rather than rent. The median house price is $235,000. To rent the same house will set you back $290 a week. And if you do have half-a-million to spend, you’ll get plenty of bang for your buck. A five bedroom, two bathrooms, on acreage property is currently under offer at close to that price point. Some recent subdivided land parcels are 1.5 hectares in size. In Terang, space is not the issue it is in larger towns. Property values have shown a 7.9 percent increase in the last 12 months.
The traditional Custodians of the land on which Terang stands are the Djargurd Wurrung people.
WATTLE ROAD 🖤 This is such a pretty town, as much due to its historical architecture as its western district surrounds. It is also very friendly.
DISTANCE FROM MELBOURNE: 215 km
WHO LIVES HERE?
According to the 2016 Census:
♦ The median age of people in Terang was 47 years. Children aged 0 – 14 years made up 17.7% of the population and people aged 65 years and over made up 24.8%.
♦ Of the families in Terang, 39.3% were couple families with children, 40.4% were couple families without children and 18.6% were one parent families.
♦ 85.7% of people were born in Australia. The most common countries of birth were England 1.2%, New Zealand 0.8%, Netherlands 0.4%, Philippines 0.3% and United States of America 0.2%.
♦ The most common occupations included managers 15.4%, technicians and trades workers 14.5%, labourers 14.3%, community and personal service workers 12.9%, and professionals 12.8%
CLIMATE: June average temperatures, min 5°C, max 14°C. December average temperatures, min 9°C, max 24°C.
MAJOR EMPLOYERS: Dairy farming, health, education, retail.
SCHOOLS: Terang College caters for P-12 and has two campuses. There is also a Catholic Primary School.
NBN CONNECTION: Fibre to the node (FTTN)
PROPERTY PRICES: The median sale price of a house is $235,000. Property values have increased by 7.3% in the last 12 months.
HEALTH CARE: 24-hour hospital with urgent and acute care theatre services, midwifery and palliative care. There is also a nursing home.
SPORT AND RECREATION: Terang is known for its sporting facilities and opportunities. Choose between golf, bowling, croquet, horse-racing, harness-racing, table tennis, netball, bowls
ARTS AND CULTURE: A Christmas gala is held in the main street, a country music festival has folded after a decade of operation, but there is often live music at the Commercial Hotel. There are Lions, Probus and Rotary clubs, a CWA branch and a Progress Association. There is also a monthly produce and craft market.
I’ve lived here my whole life. I know the joint like the back of my hand. It’s a great place for kids. You can do what you want, go where you want, your parents know you are safe. You could play in the trees at the back of your house ‘til midnight if you wanted to.
There’s never anything to worry about in Terang. Never. You know everyone. It’s a great place to be. It’s good – if kids wander off then without a doubt someone knows who they belong to, who they are and makes sure they get home safe, always.
It’s a good little community town.
There are plenty of sports here to choose from, plenty of things to have a go at, you just say you want to have a go and they’re happy to have you there. It’s very big on sport around here. People get together through sport, say on Saturday, down the footy, watch your kid, watch your brother, whoever.
People catch up either through sport or down the pub.
You might find some things a bit cheaper down the road, but you don’t take into account the price of petrol and the time. It’s good to keep the little butcher, little baker, the little man in business going.
You’re not going to find anything to buy cheaper than in Terang. You go to Warrnambool and it’s going to cost $500,000 or more. Something came up in Terang the other day for $320,000. There’s a house opposite me that went for $180,000. For a house! A young lady bought that. You’re not going to find that in a bigger town.
It’s definitely good to have the hospital here; it’s a big thing having that. The train line is good too, and easy. You can just jump on the train, and get down to Warrnambool or Melbourne for work or whatever.
The community spirit in Terang is great. Everyone gets around everyone. If someone passes away there’s a whole lot of support. It’s a very caring town. Everyone loves everyone. We’re very big on getting people involved. Come in, be yourself. We’ll welcome you.
Travel time is approximately 60 minutes.
FIND A PROPERTY
14 Dow Street, Terang
3 1 2
9 Bolivar Street, Terang
3 2 3
5 Coombes Road, Terang
4 2 3
343 Terang Framlingham Road, Terang
4 3 5