Merri Park started its life as an empty block adjacent to the Melbourne Retreat for Inebriates. Almost from the start it was used as a dumping ground for rubbish and as a cesspit.
By 1909 the Northcote Council acquired the site and made some basic improvements including planting some trees and establishing a fence to stop cricket balls from rolling into the creak, the Fitzroy Cricket club using the park as their local ground.
The Park was finally confirmed as a permanent Reserve after the Education Department purchased part of the land to the south for the construction of a secondary school, Northcote High.
Lemon, Andrew (1983). The Northcote Side of the River. North Melbourne: Hargreen