History Article


Olinda-Ferny Creek



ACCORDING to research by 1950s back pocket player Arthur "Choofer" Charteris, the Olinda Football Club was formed in 1908 and disbanded in 1914. Ferny Creek formed a club in 1910 and disbanded in 1933, paving the way for Olinda to reform the next year. In 1939, Olinda merged with Monbulk for one season. After the Second World War, in 1946, the Olinda-Ferny Creek Football Club was formed.


Olinda and Ferny Creek played in the Mountain District Football Association in one form or another from the competition's inception in 1910 until 1939, when the Olinda-Monbulk combination played in the Ringwood District Football Association. From 1946, when the Olinda-Ferny Creek club was formed, it played in the Mountain District Football League. In 1965, the club started in the third division of Melbourne's Eastern District Football League. It joined the Yarra Valley-Mountain District Football League in 1986, beginning in the first division.


After Olinda and Ferny Creek joined forces in 1946, the club wore South Melbourne's white with a red "V". A few years ago, complaints from mothers who were tired of washing predominantly white guernseys prompted an update to a design that featured white lightning bolts on a red background. Given the enormous rainfall at the top of the Dandenong Ranges, where the club is based, mothers have approved of the lycra guernseys that have replaced woollen jumpers in recent years.


Olinda-Ferny Creek has always been known as the Bloods.


Olinda 1910 Ferny Creek 1924 Ferny creek 1932

Olinda Ferny Creek

1965 1966 1967 1978 3rd Division Efl

1988 2005 2009 2nd Division Yvmdfl

2017 !st Division YVMDNL



In 1913, Ferny Creek kicked a disputed goal that won the club the grand final against Boronia. When a rematch was ordered, Ferny Creek refused to play and Boronia was awarded the flag. In 1919, Ferny Creek was incensed when Monbulk won the flag after avoiding penalty for playing an unregistered player in six games. The club's protest was to sit out the 1920 season.

In 2016 OFCFNC finished on top of the ladder 40% clear of all other teams ( and at least  four points ahead of other teams). OFCFNC beat Healesville 13.20 to 8.8 in the Second Semi Final at Alexandra but in the Grand Final the tables were reversed and Healesville stunned OFCFNC , and the entire competition, winning 8.6 to 4.9.

The following year OFCFNC was to avenge that loss with a 20.14 to 5.8 victory over Healesville in the Preliminary Final. OFCFNC then went on to win the grand final but an even larger margin.



Andrew McKinnon  Carlton

Matthew Allen         Carlton Essendon


Graham O'Donnell, the father of former Essendon captain and current Brisbane Lions assistant coach Gary O'Donnell, played a handful of games for Geelong and North Melbourne before finishing his career at Olinda-Ferny Creek. In 1978, when he was 40, Graham O'Donnell was a member of the Bloods' premiership team in his final game. During the mid-1980s, Olinda-Ferny Creek featured the Cooke brothers, Michael and Robert, in the key forward positions. Michael famously played two senior games at full-forward for Hawthorn, the 1975 second semi-final and grand final, before returning to local footy. Robert was said to be just as talented, but preferred fishing.
Mick and Tim Scott played over 600 senior games between them and won a combined 13 Best and fairest awards


Olinda-Ferny Creek has always played at the Olinda Recreation Reserve, which, at 500 metres above sea level, is the highest ground in the competition. "Choofer" Charteris said there were many games in the 1950s when heavy fog forced players to relay the scores from goal umpire to goal umpire. The cold prompted many players to take a nip of whiskey or green ginger wine at three-quarter time.


"Choofer" Charteris said one or two games in the 1950s were stricken by snow, but not nearly enough to warrant the extraordinary percentage of former footballers from the Dandenong Ranges who claim to have played at Olinda as light flakes fell to the ground. Gary Woodcock, a former secretary, is unable to remember one match at the Bloods' oval during which snow has fallen although there may have been one occassion in 1986 when we played Healsville. "Playing in the snow at Olinda is a myth," he said. In 2004, just after players had left the field following the senior match against Mount Evelyn, a sprinkling of snow began to fall.


Traditionally, the Olinda Recreation Reserve featured a slope from goal-to-goal, from the golf-course end to the clubrooms end, as well as a slope from wing to wing. "Choofer" Charteris said that, in the 1950s, spectators would drift towards the centre of the ground if the ball became trapped in the dead pocket. "It was one of the best-drained grounds in the league," he said. After the ground was levelled off, however, the drainage was hopeless. In 2000, the Bloods played at Kilsyth as the Yarra Ranges council worked on improvements. After the first game in 2001, it was apparent that the ground was no better and the Bloods moved back to Kilsyth for another year.

In 2005 the club found itself back in second Division for the first time in 17 years.It proved to be a very successful season with the senior teams both making the finals.The Seniors after a poor 2nd semi final made amends in the following week when they had a 70 point win in the Preliminary final against Seville.The following week in the Grand Final they had there revenge over Sth Belgrave with a 58 point win.


2006 2007 and 2008 saw the club again in Division 1 but by finishing on the bottom in 2008 they again found themselves in 2nd Division.The period also saw the addition of Netball to the Club for the First time with 2 sided competing each week.

2009 proved to be the most successful season in the clubs history with all the sides making the finals and ultimately winning Premierships in the Seniors Reserves and Under 18s.

Again the Club finds itself in 1st Division in 2010

Wriiten by Paul Daffey    from the Age 2001


Len Childs  recalls  catching Puffing Billy to Gembrook for matches agaisnt The Brookers.

The players would then save their return fare so they could spend it on Green GInger Wine- they would then walk home from Gembrook.

Max Peel  recalls playing his first game of senior  football in 1952 when he was jsut 14 years of age.

His brother rode all the way home to Ferny Creek on his bicycle to tell their mother. Max also recalls in very wet weather "the blokes from Melbourne" wouldn't turn up to play.

In 1955 Olinda-Ferny creek beat Emerald three times during the year but lost the grand final. After games players would often rush to the Mt Dadneong Hotel, which closed at 6.00pm.

Prior to amalgamation ferny creek played at The Rec. After amalgamatuion OFC Reserves played at Kalorama at the same time the seniors played at Olinda.

Max recalls one violent Reserves match against Monbulk at Kalormaa when the visitors refused to come out of the rooms after half time. OFC was fined  10 Pounds by the League.

Worst ground in the League- Silvan. It was red clay and players often contracted leg rashes .


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2021 Totally Work Wear Premier Div Seniors
1 Beaconsfield 100.00
2 Cranbourne 68.75
3 Narre Warren 66.67
4 Pakenham 57.14
5 Olinda Ferny Creek 57.14
6 Woori Yallock 50.00
7 Upwey Tecoma 25.00
8 Wandin 12.50
9 Doveton 12.50