Interview with a local – Clare McKenna

kyneton bookstore

Clare McKenna owns and operates Aesop’s Attic bookstore in Kyneton and has been a part of the community since she moved from Bendigo as an eighteen-year-old. She married Dan, a fifth-generation Kynetonian and they raised their five boys on their farm. Dan’s great-grandfather owned Catherineville, a grand bluestone house built in 1872, as well as the Kyneton Brewing and Malting Company.


Clare said that the town has changed significantly since she arrived. She recalls visiting The Club (now the Albion Hotel) when men and women had separate drinking areas. Once a country town based around agriculture, she reflects that Kyneton is now a commuter town with a wide range of amenities, such as the hospital and sporting and pool complexes.


Traffic between Melbourne and Bendigo used to come through the town centre but Clare says it is much safer now that the town is off the highway. Despite the diversion, the town fares well and maintains a vibrant community with a plethora of clubs and activities. Clare makes mention of the Kyneton Food Company, choirs, dance groups, the Horticultural Society, the University of the Third Age, the Kyneton Art Group and the Australian Decorative and Fine Arts Society of Central Victoria.


Clare believes that the Kyneton On Riverside development will provide more affordable housing and says it is conveniently located by the station and the picturesque riverwalk. When asked about her favourite thing about the town, Clare immediately says that it is the people. ‘It’s such a wonderful place to live. You can be involved in so many different things. Though she does add that you should invest in a good coat for winter!


Aesop’s Attic Bookshop

70 High Street, Kyneton

Phone: 03 5422 6059