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61. Beaumaris Cliffs 3 - Monocline

This information has been developed from one or more of these publications:

  • Sites of Geological and Geomorphological Significance in the Westernport Bay Catchment (1984) by Neville Rosengren.
  • Sites of Geological and Geomorphological Significance in the Western Region of Melbourne (1986) by Neville Rosengren
  • Sites of Geological and Geomorphological Significance on the Coast of Port Phillip Bay (1988) by Neville Rosengren.
  • Sites of Environmental Significance in the Flood Plain of the Upper Yarra Valley Region (1983) by Neville Rosengren, Douglas Frood and Kim Lowe (as part of a study of Sites of Environmental Significance by the University of Melbourne for the then Upper Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges Authority).
Geological heritage sites, including sites of geomorphological interest and volcanic heritage sites, are under regular revision by the Geological Society of Australia, especially in the assessment of significance and values. Reference should be made to the most recent reports. See the Earth Science Heritage (external link) section of the Geological Society of Australia website for details of geological heritage reports, and a bibliography.

Location:285935. Opposite Deauville Street, Beaumaris.


Beach Road, Beaumaris. The significant features may be viewed from the cliff top.


Crown land, City of Mordialloc.


The site displays the dip of the Black Rock Sandstone (averaging 15 to 20 degrees) where the beds are warped along the Beaumaris Monocline. The monoclinal warp is best seen in profile where there is a small cove and sea cave opposite Wells Road. The contact with the Red Bluff sands is seen here in the upper part of the cliff. Small reefs lying parallel to the coast are resistant sandstone beds outcropping along the strike of the monocline. Towards Charman Road, the dip steepens to 25 degrees and the strike becomes more northerly as the monocline trends inland. East of Charman Road, the softer Red Bluff Sand is warped down to sea level and the erosion of this softer material has produced the pronounced bight and simple curving coastline between Beaumaris and Mordialloc.

Marine invertebrate fossils occur in the Black Rock Sandstone although not in as readily available numbers as the outer Beaumaris sites (Sites
59 & 60).


Regional. The site is a very clear example of a monocline fold. The variation of dip and strike of the beds is clearly displayed, as is the effect of the changing lithology (from Black Rock Sandstone to Red Bluff Sand) on coastal cliff profiles. The site also has significance as a fossil locality.


Class 2. The cliffs should not be further vegetated or stabilized. The parallel reefs are an important part of this site and should not be interfered with. Viewpoints from the cliff top path should be positioned to allow a clear profile of the dipping beds of the monocline as they occur in the cliffs and near shore reefs.


Halls, T.S. & Pritchard, G.G. (1897). Note on a tooth of Palorchestes from Beaumaris.
Proc. R. Soc. Vict., 10, 57-59.
Cudmore, F. A. (1926). Phosphatic nodules in the Geelong district. Vic. Nat., 43, 78-82.
Chapman, T.S. & Cudmore, F.A. (1924). New or little known fossils in the National Museum. Proc. R. Soc. Vict., 36, 107-162.
Singleton, F.A. (1941). The Tertiary geology of Australia. Proc. R. Soc. Vict., 53, 1-125.
Gill, E.D. (1957). The stratigraphical occurrence and palaeoecology of some Australian Tertiary Marsupials. Mem. Nat. Mus. Vict., 21, 135-203.
Woodburne, M.O. (1969). A lower manidible of Zumogaturus gilli from the Sandringham Sands, Beaumaris, Victoria, Australia. Mem. Nat. Mus. Vict., 29, 29-39.
Wilkinson, H.E. (1969). Description of an upper Miocene albatross from Beaumaris, Victoria, Australia, and a review of fossil Diomedeidae. Mem. Nat. Mus. Vict., 29, 41-51.
Simpson, G.G. (1970). Miocene Penguins from Victoria, Australia and Chubut, Argentina. Mem. Nat. Mus. Vict., 31, 17-23
Pritchard, G.B. (1975). Notes on the freshwater limestones of the Geelong District. Geelong Nat., 4(3), 37-40.
King, P.R., Cochrane, R.M. & Cooney, A.M. (1987). Significant geological features along the coast in the City of Sandringham. Unpub. rep. geol. Surv. Vict., 1987/35.
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