The Yan Yean Reservoir is the oldest water supply for the city of Melbourne. Work began in 1853 at the height of the gold rush, and it took four years to construct at a cost of £750,000.
At the time of its completion in 1857 it was the largest artificial reservoir in the world. It was designed by James Blackburn, an English Civil Engineer and former London sanitary inspector who was transported to Tasmania as a convict following charges of embezzlement.
After being pardoned he came to Melbourne in 1849