Kialla and Kialla West

The Kialla district is in the Goulburn Valley irrigation area, 10 km south of Shepparton in northern Victoria. It is thought that the name was derived from that of an Aboriginal sub-tribal group. The name was also applied to part of the Goulburn River.

In 1874 the Kialla primary school was opened, and in 1876 the Kialla West school was opened. They coincided with the subdivision of pastoral runs for farm selections. In 1893 the Kialla Village Settlement was opened, consisting of lots averaging 2 or 3 hectares on sandy soil, east of the Goulburn River and south of the railway line to Shepparton. It was mainly used for orchards. The holdings have been consolidated and mined for building sand since the 1920s.

The Kialla West and Kialla townships are south of the village settlement near Mitchell Road. In 1903 the Australian handbook described the district:

The Kialla district came under irrigation in 1924. Kialla West developed as the larger settlement, situated between the Goulburn River and a State Park to the west and Seven Creeks to the east. Both Kialla and Kialla West have primary schools (1874, 1876), and in 2014 had enrolments of 62 and 206 respectively. Kialla also has a public hall. The old drive-in site in South Shepparton was developed in 2009 for a supermarket and other stores.

In the 2000s the former Kialla Village area and land south of the Broken River were developed for housing and retirement villages. Several estates looked out on to Kialla Lake, a former wetland, which turned out to be flood prone in the big wet of 2011. On the opposite (west) side of the Goulburn Valley Highway there is Kialla Park. The highway has a bulky goods and retail strip.

Kialla census populations have been:

census date population
1911 502
1933 307
1947 423
1961 529
2006 4706
2011 5810

At the 2011 census, Kialla East had a population of 256 and Kialla West 432.

Further Reading

Sue Wallace, Shepparton Shire reflections 1879-1979, Shire of Shepparton, 1979

Kitty M. Weight, The history of Kialla Village Settlement (Honeysuckle Park) 1893-1993, the author, 1993