Monday 2 November 2020





Port Phillip Bay Map

Point Nepean marks the southern point of The Rip, the entrance to Port Phillip Bay and the most westerly point of the Mornington Peninsula some 110 km south of Melbourne. It was named in 1802 after the British Politician and colonial administrator Sir Evan Nepean. Limestone was mined from the cliffs and two lime kilns were constructed around 1840.The Quarantine Station was opened in 1852 and this operated until 1980. There are over 50 heritage buildings that can be inspected at the Quarantine Station.

Fortifications were built from 1878 as protection for the rich gold fields to the north and west of Melbourne. The first Australia shots of both World Wars were fired from Fort Nepean. On August 5, 1914 the German ship SS Platz attempted to escape from Port Phillip Bay within minutes of being notified that war had been declared and the order was given to stop or sink the ship. The Platz ignored the signals and a shot was fired over her bow and the Platz turned around and her crew were arrested. In the second world war on 4 September 1939 within hours of war being declared the A 1 gun fired across the bow of a ship which had failed to identify itself, which subsequently was identified as an Australian freighter SS Wonoira. They were the only occasions that the guns were fired in anger. Point Nepean is also the site where then Prime Minister Harold Holt disappeared while swimming at Cheviot Beach on 17 December 1967.Cheviot Beach was the site of the loss of SS Cheviot on October 20, 1987 with the loss of 35 lives.


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