Explore the rich and complex history of Tower Hill on our 3D tour. Learn about this significant heritage site on Eastern Maar Country, where Robin Boyd’s Tower Hill Visitor Centre built in 1969.
Explore the rich and complex history of Tower Hill and learn about this significant heritage site on Eastern Maar Country. Through the 3D tour, you will hear from academics, architects, cultural guides, Parks Victoria and local residents to gain insight into the social, cultural, environmental and architectural heritage of Tower Hill.
Eastern Maar settlement in the area predates the volcanic eruption 32,000 years ago that formed the unique landscape of Tower Hill. Prior to European settlement, the thriving area was lush with vegetation and native wildlife. European colonists settled on Tower Hill in the 1830s and are responsible for mass genocide of the Eastern Maar people. Over the following years, extensive clearing for farming ensued as well as the introduction of destructive foreign species to the area. By the 1950s Tower Hill had been reduced to a flattened landscape, without any trees or native wildlife.
In the 1960s a grassroots movement led by the Warrnambool Field Naturalists Club worked to revegetate and revive the land by planting trees. They were joined by school groups and community members in the effort. The group used Eugene von Guerard’s 1855 detailed painting of the landscape at Tower Hill as a guide for planting and species selection. This was one of the first community-led revegetation projects in Victoria, which paved the way for future land management and conservation projects.
In 1962, the Visitor Centre at Tower Hill was designed by Robin Boyd and completed in 1969. Sympathetic in its design, the building responds to the curves of its surroundings and harmonises with the natural landscape. The Visitor Centre was designed to interpret the history and natural surrounds of the significant site.
Tower Hill is currently undergoing an evaluation for a conservation plan, with restoration and updates by Lovell Chen.
Led by Robin Boyd Foundation Digital Team, the Tower Hill 3D tour has been developed using a Matterport scan, embedded interviews and augmented reality specialists Phoria to bring the history of Tower Hill to life.