The Eltham Rural Group Inc was formed in 1955 by a group of friends in the Eltham area to raise funds for the building of University House at Melbourne University. At the completion of the appeal, the group decided to continue their fundraising activities with the aim of assisting local community organisations in their services to people in need.

In addition to a range of private functions throughout the year, Paddy’s Market is the Group’s only public event and remains one of the ERG’s biggest fundraisers. The next Paddy’s Market will be held on Saturday 4th May 2024 from 9.30am to 1pm at the 1st Eltham Scout Hall, Youth Road, Eltham (off Diamond Street).

In the early years, Paddy’s ran over two days out of marquees. Prior to the advent of craft markets and garage sales, Paddy’s drew huge crowds of people, some travelling long distances every year. It was renowned for the quality and diversity of goods for sale.

The proceeds from Paddy’s and ERG’s other activities are distributed at the end of the year to local organisations who request assistance. The aim of the Eltham Rural Group is to raise locally and give locally.

The proceeds of Paddy’s Market and our other fundraising activities are used to support local services that benefit our community, such as:

  • Riding for the Disabled
  • Our local CFA Brigades for operational needs
  • Banksia Palliative Care C.A.V.E. supporting disadvantaged students,
  • Woodridge Pre-School for their programs for little children who have special needs
  • 1st Eltham Scout Group
  • Noraccom, providing residential care for young adults with intellectual disabilities

ERG was also privileged to support the Blacksmith Tree project commemorating the people and communities so tragically affected by the bushfires in February 2009. The tree has been erected at Strethewan.