Lake Macquarie History

Croudace Bay

The suburb of Croudace Bay and the large bay of the same name are named after Thomas Croudace, early landowner in the area. Croudace was a very successful mining engineer and manager.

He arrived in Australia in 1862 to serve as a mining engineer for the Scottish-Australian Mining Company. In 1869 Thomas Croudace purchased three portions of land, 41A, 42A and 43 totalling 452 acres at what was to become the Croudace Bay area. Croudace named his lakeside house Leighinmohr, which was near Shepherd's Creek in Valentine. The bad state of the road from Newcastle to the lake was reported in the Town and Country in 1870. It is probable that the house building materials, furniture and supplies, were bought out from Cockle Creek by ferry.

Major Parrott's maps of 1885 and 1891 show that the bay had already taken Croudace's name. Lambton B-pit near Redhead was developed by Croudace in 1898 and later he took over the management of all the company's collieries, until his retirement due to ill health.

In 1906 his son, Sydney Croudace was one of Lake Macquarie's first councillors and was its first president. The first properly formed road between Warners Bay and Valentine was completed by dole labour in 1934-36.

In the later part of the 20th century, the three local communities, Valentine, Croudace Bay and Eleebana and the Lake Macquarie Shire in general, experienced dramatic population growth. Post-war prosperity saw not only a steady maintenance of full employment, but also an increase in home ownership and a degree of affluence for many. Local Progress Associations were formed post-war in Rocky Point/Eleebana (1945) and Valentine (1947) to pressure local authorities to provide the basic amenities which would convert these isolated holiday and retirement estates into prime residential sites (source: "Green Point, Valentine, Eleebana and Croudace Bay" by Peter Murray).

The Thomas H Halton Park at Croudace Bay was resumed by the Council in 1947 from the Croudace Estate. It was named after Lake Macquarie's longest serving Shire Clerk who had been instrumental in obtaining the land. With the waterfront land went a large acreage to the east in the vicinity of Tingira Drive and Regal Way. The NSW Government had to pass a special Act, the Local Government (Land Acquisition) Amendment Act in 1951 to validate the resumption and subdivision (Source Nilsen, L [Ed] "Lake Macquarie Past and Present" 1985).

In 1987 the Council decided to develop its residential land in what was known as "Croudace Bay Estate" or "Parklea Estate". (Source: "Green Point Valentine Eleebana and Croudace Bay" by Peter Murray).

Streets in Croudace Bay