The Greta Heritage Group is dedicated to preserving the rich history and heritage of the Greta district located in north-east Victoria, better known as Kelly Country. Today as you drive through the area known as Greta West, little remains to show that this was where the original township of Greta was situated. In 1842 a squatter by the name of Robertson bought the Fifteen Mile Creek Run, and named it \’Greta’, he also opened an Inn which he named the \’Greta Inn\’. It is interesting to note that the Fifteen Mile Creek was named because it was fifteen miles from Benalla, and that the name \’Greta\’ comes from a river of the same name in Yorkshire, England.
The township of Greta was surveyed in 1852. Streets were laid out and named Cheyne, Chisholm, Reid, and Moore. An area was set aside for a reserve and a school and part of the original survey included agricultural lots for farming. The land surrounding the township was opened for selection between the years of 1860 to 1866. At its busiest, the township of Greta had a police station, school, butcher, general store, post office, two blacksmiths, and two hotels. A cemetery was gazetted in 1871.
Greta township was originally on the main route between Port Phillip (Melbourne) and Sydney, and was a direct route to the goldfields in Beechworth and the Buckland Valley. Unfortunately for Greta, the main road was diverted through Wangaratta and as we now know follows the railway north to Sydney. The township gradually began to decline; less traffic meant less opportunity to trade and the population grew smaller. Over the years the police station was closed, the remaining hotel was not rebuilt after it burnt down, and the \’township\’ of Greta gradually died. Despite all of this, the Greta district was, and still is, a vibrant and strong community with descendants of the original settlers still living in the area.