The property Haining Farm was bought and named by Sir John T Reid in 1949. Sir John farmed the land for many years, and then donated it to the Victorian government in 1973 to be used as an educational farming site. From 1974 until 2019, the land operated as a share-agreement commercial dairy farm. In 2013 due to maintenance and cost issues, the Victorian Environment Assessment Council recommended that Haining Farm become a community use area, with a focus on revegetating floodplain forest habitat to support threatened species including the Lowland Leadbeater’s Possum and Helmeted Honeyeater.

During 2016 and 2017, significant community and stakeholder conversations were undertaken by Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action (DEECA) to determine an appropriate plan for the site. The plan was finalised based on a combination of the recommendations of the Working Group, an assessment of bushfire risk and the results of the community consultation.

In late 2018 Parks Victoria undertook further community engagement around detailed design and the future use of the park. Questions related to the woodland buffers, visitor precincts and community involvement.

In 2019 transformation works began in earnest and in May 2021 the park was opened for the first time as a public park. Quickly becoming an important conservation site, Haining Farm will continue to develop, with more visitor facilities planned as well as the introduction of captive bred endangered species.

The restoration of Haining Farm is a collaborative project involving Greening Australia, Zoos Victoria, CFA, DEECA, Melbourne Water and the community, with funding from various sources including the John T Reid Charitable Trust.

See our management plans and strategies for the Yellingbo Landscape Conservation Area 10-year Draft Plan, which the park is guided by.

If you have any questions regarding the project please get in touch at

Community engagement documents:

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