is a seaside suburb of Melbourne in Victoria, Australia, located in the local government area of the City of Frankston. It is 41 km south-east of the Melbourne city centre, near the northernmost point of the Mornington Peninsula. Due to its geographical location, it is often referred to as the "gateway to the Mornington Peninsula".
European settlement of Frankston began immediately after the foundation of Melbourne in 1835 – as an unofficial fishing village serving the early Melbourne township. The "village at Frankston" was officially established in 1853, after formal land sales took place, and was named following a survey of the area in 1854. It became a suburb within themetropolitan area of Melbourne as a result of the urban agglomeration of the metropolis during the 1980s. Today, Frankston lends its name to the broader local government area of the City of Frankston, and serves as its major activity and administrative centre..
The origins of the name Frankston have been subject to conjecture. One enduring theory is that Frankston was named after Frank Liardet, the son of early Melbourne pioneer Wilbraham Liardet, who built the first brick house in Frankston at his Ballam Park estate (in what is now the locality of Karingal).
However, a member of the Liardet family wrote a letter to The Argus newspaper in 1916 stating that this was not the case. Included with the letter was correspondence with the Department of Lands and Survey which supported the case that Frankston was not named after Frank Liardet. Alternatively, according to the correspondence, the Chief Draftsman of the department states that Frankston was named after Charles Franks, an early Melbourne settler who was killed byAboriginals. It is also states that the name Frankston was used from the first survey of the area in early 1854, a year before Liardet constructed his homestead.
Charles Franks arrived in Melbourne in 1836 and took up a land holding near Mount Cottrel, west of Werribee. Franks' land neighboured that of explorer and surveyor John Helder Wedge, one of the original settlers of Melbourne. Wedge's nephew Charles Wedge (after whose ancestors Wedge Road in what is now Carrum Downs is named) managed his uncle's land before taking up his own land holding in the Frankston area. In the correspondence published in The Argus, the Chief Draftsman of the Department of Lands and Survey surmises that, at the time surveying the area, the name Frankston was probably suggested to honour the Wedges' deceased former neighbour.
Another popular theory, that has entered into local folklore, is that Frankston was named after a pub called Frank Stone's Hotel. In 1929, future author Don Charlwood, a student at Frankston High School at the time, compiled a brief history of Frankston using living sources and local records supporting this theory. Charlwood's history was published over several weeks in the Frankston and Somerville Standard newspaper the following year.
After the settlement of Melbourne in 1835, James Davey took up a large land holding in 1846, which extended from Olivers Hill to (what is now his namesake) Daveys Bay. Olivers Hill was named after local fisherman, James Oliver, who built a cottage atop the hill from where he kept an eye out for fish in the waters below. The first official land sales in the area were held in 1853, and Frank Liardet (the eldest son of prominent settler, hotelier and descendant of French nobility, Wilbraham Liardet), established the "Ballam Ballam" estate in 1854. The estate was the earliest officially recorded settlement in Frankston, and was located to the east of Port Phillip, in what is now known as the locality of Karingal. Liardet's original homestead "Ballam Park" remains today, and is now heritage-listed. In the 1910s, C. Evelyn Liardet, grandson of Wilbraham Liardet, wrote to The Argus newspaper to correct a suggestion that Frankston's name in any way derived from his uncle Frank Liardet.
The suburb of Frankston (not to be confused with the multi-suburb government area known as the City of Frankston of which the suburb of Frankston is a part) covers a wide geographic area in comparison with other suburbs of Melbourne. It also encompasses localities (not to be confused with being independent suburbs) which include: Karingal, Olivers Hill, Frankston Heights, Frankston East, Mount Erin and Long Island.
The suburb is bounded to the west by Port Phillip; the north by Skye Road and Overton Road (bordering the City of Frankston suburbs of Frankston North and Seaford); the east by McClelland Drive and the Moorooduc Highway (bordering the City of Frankston suburb of Langwarrin); and the south by Humphries Road, Robinsons Road and Golflinks Road (bordering the Shire of Mornington Peninsula suburbs of Mount Eliza and Baxter).
As a primarily residential area, the economy is primarily a tertiary with a heavy retail and service focus. The Frankston CBD (spanning the area between Nepean Highway and the railway station) contains a retail core, including the major regional shopping complex as well as street shopping, restaurants, bars, pubs and nightclubs.
Since 2003, the City of Frankston has invested in Frankston as a tourism destination. The City's first tourism marketing strategy was adopted in 2003, with a focus on the Frankston Beach and the waterfront precinct, retail core and surrounding heritage sites. Bayside Shopping Centre, the largest shopping complex on the Mornington Peninsula, is located in the Frankston central business district. It features major department stores such as Myer, Target and Kmart; two supermarket chains Coles and Safeway, and over 250 smaller specialty stores and food outlets, located over three interlocking malls. The centre also contains a small entertainment precinct with restaurants, bars, and a 12-screen Hoyts Cinema complex.
Frankston is one of the southern-most suburbs of the metropolitan area ofMelbourne, as well as the gateway to the Mornington Peninsula. As such, it is well serviced by both road and rail. The suburb is connected to the rest of the metropolitan area of Melbourne by the EastLink tollway and Nepean Highway, and is connected to the rest of the Mornington Peninsula by the Moorooduc Highway, Nepean Highway and Peninsula Link.
The suburb is connected directly to the Melbourne city centre by the Frankston railway line from Frankston railway station. Local bus services run throughout the City of Frankston and also connect it to its neighbouring cities of Dandenong,Casey and Kingston. Regional bus services connect the south-western Mornington Peninsula, and the south-eastern Mornington Peninsula is connected by the Stony Point railway line from Frankston railway station as well as Leawarra railway station. The major transport terminus for the suburb is located on Young Street in the Frankston CBD.
Galleries and public art
The major public art gallery in the area is the McClelland Gallery and Sculpture Park, located in the nearby City of Frankston suburb of Langwarrin. The gallery opened in 1971, and is renowned for its sculpture park which showcases 100 artworks by prominent Australian sculptors, including: Inge King, Lenton Parr,Clement Meadmore and Norma Redpath. It was founded by siblings Annie (Nan) and Harry McClelland, who were at the centre an artists' group located in the suburb of Frankston locality of Long Island during the 1920s. The sculpture park is set in 16 hectares of parklands, and the gallery houses a number of permanent indoor collections. It is located at 390 McClelland Drive in Langwarrin. Since 2003, the gallery has also commissioned the McClelland Sculpture Survey. The survey awards AU$100,000 to an emerging Australian sculptor and is considered to be one of Australia's most prestigious prizes for sculpture.
Other public galleries in Frankston include those of Frankston Arts Centre and its "Cube37" creative space, which host regular temporary exhibitions. Notable private galleries in the area include Brialyn Boathouse Gallery and the gallery of maritime artist Richard Linton. The major artists' group in the suburb is the Peninsula Arts Society which was founded in 1954.
The Christmas Festival of Lights has been held annually in early December since 1998, and is the largest in Frankston's events calendar. It takes place outside the Frankston Civic Centre and Frankston Arts Centre on the corners of Davey Street and Young Street (which are closed to traffic during the festival) in the Frankston central business district (CBD). The festival includes: carnival rides, community activities and exhibitions, food stalls, live carols and music,parades and a Santa Claus procession. The festival culminates with the lighting of the 100 ft and 100-year-old Norfolk pine tree (Araucaria heterophylla) outside the Frankston Civic Centre and is followed by a large fireworks display. The festival night attracts over 45,000 people.
Frankston Waterfront Festival is a celebration of Frankston's seaside location that is held annually over a weekend in mid-January. The festival takes place at the Frankston Waterfront precinct and includes: carnival rides, community activities and exhibitions, fireworks display, a food and wine market, live music and water activities along Frankston Beach and Kananook Creek. The festival also coincides with Sand Sculpting Australia's annual exhibition, which is the largest display of sand sculpting annually in Australia. The exhibition attracts Australian and international artists who sculpt 3,500 tonnes of sand into artwork according to an annual theme. It opens on Boxing Day each year and runs till the end of April. The Frankston Waterfront Festival weekend attracts around 25,000 people, and the Sand Sculpting Australia exhibition attracts over 230,000 people during its four month run.
Ventana Fiesta is boutique festival celebrating Latin American, Portuguese and Spanish culture held annually since 2006. It is staged over a month between February and March. It takes place at sites around Frankston and Carrum Downs, and includes: Ventana Arte - an art and craft market; Ventana Film - a film festival; Ventana Musica -traditional music performances; FEVA Cup - a beach soccer tournament; and culminates with the Ventana Street Fiesta - a live music and dance party held in Wells Street Plaza in the Frankston CBD. Frankston is also a sister city to Susono in Japan, and the Frankston-Susono Friendship Association stages a Japanese Cultural Fair annually at the Frankston Arts Centre.