Geographic Names Victoria has gazetted the naming of Larni Barramal Yaluk in the Victoria Government Gazette today.

Hepburn Shire Council has worked closely with the community and project partners Mount Alexander Shire Council, North Central Catchment Management Authority and DJAARA to campaign for the renaming of the creek over many years.

Mayor, Cr Brian Hood, said the decision by Geographic Names Victoria was most welcomed. “The old name had its origins in racial segregation and anti-black racism and was therefore unacceptable. Larni Barramal Yaluk, which means home or habitat of the Emu Creek, reconnects the landscape with Dja Dja Wurrung culture and language,” said Cr Hood.

“This change ties in with Council’s ongoing reconciliation and recognition work. We are very pleased the creek is now formally renamed.”

Dja Dja Wurrung Group CEO Rodney Carter reiterated the importance of the name change.

“This creek has an identity and has a spirit. We are at last affording it the respect it deserves by giving back its name, to now say its name is speaking to Country in the most beautiful way,” said Mr Carter.

Hepburn Shire Council and Mount Alexander Shire Council both resolved to request Geographic Names Victoria to rename the creek at their Ordinary Council Meetings in April 2022.

“The decision was made following consultation with the community and stakeholders, which include DJAARA and local Indigenous elders. In making our decision to change the name, Councillors also considered the impact the name has on First Nations People,” said Mount Alexander Shire Mayor Rosie Annear.

“Changing the name is important for many reasons – it recognises and honours the traditional owners of our region, is inclusive, and connects us to our Aboriginal heritage. It also reinstates Dja Dja Wurrung language into the landscape, which is an action in Council’s Reconciliation Action Plan,” said Cr Annear.

There are strict protocols on renaming roads, features and localities. The process included significant community engagement on renaming of the creek in late 2021, with overwhelming support for a change.

A historic reference to the previous name will be included in the VICNAMES register and will remain a part of the region’s history.

Hepburn Shire will work with other road partners to install new signage at the creek.

And if you’re struggling with the pronunciation, it’s really very simple.

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