Macedon Ranges Shire
Macedon Ranges Shire, centred on Kyneton to the north-west of Melbourne, was formed on 19 January 1995, by the union of Gisborne, Newham and Woodend, Romsey and most of Kyneton shires. The shire’s dominant feature, Mount Macedon and the Great Dividing Range, was the source of its name. Mount Macedon was named by the New South Wales Surveyor-General, Thomas Mitchell, on his exploratory journey in 1836. Mitchell climbed the mount and saw Port Phillip Bay to the south-east, and the association of Phillip of Macedonia inspired the name he gave to the mount.
The shire has an area of 1747 sq km and is crossed in a north-westerly direction by the Calder Highway and railway line from Melbourne to Bendigo. Most of the centres of population are along this transport corridor, the most southerly being Gisborne and thence Macedon, Woodend, Kyneton and Malmsbury. Romsey and Lancefield are in the east of the shire. Macedon Ranges southern boundary nearly touches Sunbury and the northern boundary borders Mount Alexander shire.
The Macedon Ranges are a popular day-tour destination, being renowned for gardens, scenery and the Hanging Rock reserve and racecourse. The district is allied to the spa country further north for tourist promotion. The north of the shire contains storages for the Coliban scheme which supplies domestic and irrigation waters to the Bendigo region.
Macedon Ranges Shire is headquartered at Kyneton in the north-west of the shire. There are also offices at Woodend in the middle of the shire and at Romsey in the east, and a larger administration centre is in Gisborne.
The shire’s census populations have been:
Gisborne, Newham and Woodend, Romsey and Kyneton shires entries