Healesville, Victoria

Healesville is a town in Victoria, Australia, 52 km north-east from Melbourne's central business district. Its local government area is the Shire of Yarra Ranges. At the 2016 Census, Healesville had a population of 7,461.[1]

Healesville is situated on the Watts River, a tributary of the Yarra River.

Healesville Grand Hotel
The Grand Hotel at Healesville
Healesville is located in Melbourne
Coordinates37°39′22″S 145°30′50″E / 37.65611°S 145.51389°ECoordinates: 37°39′22″S 145°30′50″E / 37.65611°S 145.51389°E
Population7,461 (2016 census)[1]
Elevation199 m (653 ft)
LGA(s)Shire of Yarra Ranges
State electorate(s)Eildon
Federal Division(s)Casey
Mean max temp Mean min temp Annual rainfall
19.2 °C
67 °F
8 °C
46 °F
1,020.1 mm
40.2 in
Localities around Healesville:
Chum Creek Toolangi Narbethong
Dixons Creek Tarrawarra Healesville McMahons Creek
Coldstream Gruyere Badger Creek Woori Yallock Don Valley


The creation of a railway to the more distant Gippsland and Yarra Valley goldfields in the 1860s resulted in a settlement forming on the Watts River[2] and its survey as a town in 1864. It was named after Richard Heales, the Premier of Victoria from 1860–1861. The post office opened on 1 May 1865.[3] The town became a setting off point for the Woods Point Goldfield with the construction of the Yarra Track in the 1870s.


Healesville is well known for the Healesville Sanctuary, a nature park with hundreds of native Australian animals displayed in a semi-open natural setting and an active platypus breeding program.

The Yarra Valley Railway operates from Healesville Station on every Sunday, most public holidays and Wednesday to Sunday during school holidays.[5]

Schools in Healesville include the Healesville Primary School, St Brigid's Catholic primary school, the rural Chum Creek Primary School, Badger Creek Primary School, Healesville High School and Worawa Aboriginal College, an Aboriginal school whose former students include noted Australian Rules Footballer David Wirrpanda. Much of what is now Healesville lies on the ancestral land of the Wurundjeri people. The Coranderrk mission station, set up in 1863, is located just south of the main township.

Industries in and around Healesville include sawmilling, horticulture, tourism and, more recently, viticulture.

The Salvation Army has been part of the community since the late 19th century, with a continued and renewed presence in town.[6]

Healesville has an active CFA (Country Fire Authority) volunteer fire brigade established in 1894 which has been active in the community and still is to this day. The Healesville Rural Fire Brigade was formed in 1941 and disbanded and membership amalgamated with the Healesville Urban Fire Brigade in 1985. The amalgamation of the Chum Creek Rural Fire Brigade with the Healesville brigade occurred in 1996. The Healesville Fire Brigade[7] now operates a main and a satellite station with members from both the Healesville and Chum Creek areas.


According to the 2016 census of Population, there were 7,461 people in Healesville.

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people made up 3.7% of the population.
  • 77.5% of people were born in Australia. The next most common countries of birth were England 5.6% and New Zealand 1.7%.
  • 89.5% of people spoke only English at home.
  • The most common responses for religion were No Religion 44.4%, Catholic 16.3% and Anglican 12.2%.[1]


The town has an Australian rules football team, The Bloods, competing in the Yarra Valley Mountain District Football League.[8]

Healesville also has a tennis club, the Healesville Tennis Club, which competes in the Eastern Region Tennis junior and senior competitions.

Healesville has a picnic horse racing club, Healesville Amateur Racing, which holds around seven race meetings a year with the Healesville Cup meeting in January.[9]

The Healesville Greyhound Racing Club also holds regular meetings.[10]

Golfers play at the course of the RACV Country Club on Yarra Glen Road.[11]

Healesville also has an association football team known as Healesville Soccer Club that plays in the Victorian State League 4 East.

Notable people


From the late 1890s elaborate country retreat residences were built alongside hotels and guest houses.

A Tourist and Progress Association was created before 1914.

In the 1920s the association published "Healesville, The World-famed Tourist Resort", listing over 40 beauty spots and 20 hotels and guest houses. The construction of the Maroondah Dam in 1927, replacing the weir, brought several hundred workmen to Healesville. Their departure and the onset of the 1930s depression exposed Healesville's restricted range of industries. Timber and tourism were not stable enough for sustained growth. Notwithstanding the depression, the 1930s saw increased motor tourism (partly bypassing Healesville) and decreased railway patronage. Only 10% came by rail at Easter 1934. Tourism was still active but a local newspaper commented that Healesville would be "heaps better off calling itself the good-time town instead of the world-famed-tourist-resort—that's got whiskers on it".

After being Melbourne's playground at the turn of the 20th century, with a plethora of B&Bs available, Healesville has become a tourist destination again. It is home to Healesville Sanctuary, Badger Weir Picnic Area, Yarra Valley Railway, Healesville Organic Market, and volunteer-run events such as the Healesville Music Festival, Open Studios, and the Yarra Valley Rodeo.

It has now become a social hub of the Yarra Valley and the greater district of Melbourne with a range of cafes and restaurant usually seen in inner city suburbs. The Healesville Hotel has been standing since 1910. The pub was revamped in the late 1990s. The Grand Hotel was built in 1880 and is another Yarra Valley icon. Known as "The Grand Old Lady", the hotel offers a seasonal menu, accommodation and entertainment.

Film and television

The Internet Movie Database has Healesville and its environs as the filming locations for a number of films and TV programs: the Australian TV series Young Ramsay (1977), Felicity (1979), the natural history TV series Life on Earth (1979), Frog Dreaming (1986), the Australian TV short film Harry's War (1999) and Killer Elite (2011).



Healesville Visitor Centre


Healesville Railway Station


Healesville Hotel


Grand Hotel




Mount Riddell


Mount Saint Leonard


Healesville by night, taken from Mount Saint Leonard


Healesville Main Street at night

Healesville Mechanics Institute

Mechanics Institute

Grand Hotel Healesville

Grand Hotel

Healesville Hotel

Healesville Hotel

Maroondah Dam at capacity, October 2011

Maroondah Dam 2011


  1. ^ a b c "2016 Census QuickStats Healesville". Australian Bureau if Statistics. Retrieved 16 February 2019.
  2. ^ "THE BEST TRACK TO THE RIVER JORDAN . GOLD-FIELDS". The Age (3, 199). Victoria, Australia. 28 January 1865. p. 6. Retrieved 21 April 2017 – via National Library of Australia., ...No works have been at present executed upon this permanent line until the track reaches the township of Healesville, near the Watts river...
  3. ^ Premier Postal History, Post Office List, retrieved 11 April 2008
  4. ^ "Bureau of Meteorology". Climate statistics for Australia. Retrieved 14 March 2017.
  5. ^ "Yarra Valley Railway Fares and Timetables", Yarra Valley Railway, archived from the original on 24 October 2009, retrieved 7 May 2009
  6. ^ The Salvation Army, The Salvation Army Healesville, retrieved 16 September 2008
  7. ^ "Healesville Fire Brigade".
  8. ^ Full Points Footy, Healesville, archived from the original on 5 April 2008, retrieved 25 July 2008
  9. ^ Country Racing Victoria, Healesville Amateur Racing, archived from the original on 28 July 2008, retrieved 7 May 2009
  10. ^ Greyhound Racing Victoria, Healesville, archived from the original on 31 March 2009, retrieved 15 April 2009
  11. ^ Golf Select, RACV Country Club, retrieved 11 May 2009
  12. ^ Flanagan, Martin (25 January 2003). "Tireless ambassador bids you welcome". The Age. Retrieved 31 October 2008.
Acacia leprosa

Acacia leprosa, also known as cinnamon wattle, is an acacia native to Australia. It occurs in woodland in New South Wales and Victoria. It occurs as a hardy shrub or small tree. The phyllodes (a modified flat leaf-like structure arising through an expanded petiole replacing the leaf blade) are 3–14 cm long and contain oil glands. The lemon-yellow flowers occur as globular heads in clusters in the leaf axils. The fruit is flat seed pod.

A number of varieties are currently recognised within the species including:

A. leprosa var. crassipoda Maslin & D.J.Murphy - type: Pyrenees Range, Victoria

A. leprosa var. graveolens Maslin & D.J.Murphy - formerly known as Acacia verniciflua (Southern variant), type: Gippsland Lakes

A. leprosa Sieber ex DC. var. leprosa

A. leprosa var. magna Maslin & D.J.Murphy - type: Cape Otway, Victoria

A. leprosa var. uninervia Maslin & D.J.Murphy, formerly known as A. leprosa (large phyllode variant), type: near Healesville, VictoriaFormer varieties include:

A. leprosa var. binervis F.Muell., currently included in Acacia verniciflua

A.leprosa var. tenuifolia Benth. also known as A. leprosa (Seymour variant), currently included in Acacia verniciflua

A. leprosa (Dandenong Range variant), A. leprosa var. elongata Guilf. [nom. inval.] or A. leprosa var. Reclinata, currently known as Acacia stictophyllaThe cultivar Acacia leprosa 'Scarlet Blaze' is the only Australian wattle to have red inflorescences (all the rest are yellow or cream-colored, except for Acacia purpureapetala, which has purple flowers). It was discovered northeast of Melbourne, Australia, in 1995, and released commercially in 2001.

Acacia leprosa is mentioned in The Australasian Sketcher of Saturday 19 June 1880 in part two of an article on the Mallee Country, as one of the 'beautiful shrubs' found in the region and identified by Mr Guilfoyle, director of the botanic gardens.

Bicentennial National Trail

The Bicentennial National Trail (BNT), originally known as the National Horse Trail, is one of the longest multi-use, non-motorised, self-reliant trails in the world, stretching 5,330 kilometres from Cooktown, Queensland, through New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory to Healesville, 60 km north-east of Melbourne. This trail runs the length of the rugged Great Dividing Range through national parks, private property and alongside wilderness areas. The BNT follows old coach roads, stock routes, brumby tracks, rivers and fire trails. It was originally intended for horses, but is these days promoted also for cycling and walking, though it is not yet entirely suited to these two activities.

Elsie Deane

Elsie May Deane (born 22 June 1910 in Brighton, Victoria, Australia - died 22 July 1978 in Healesville, Victoria) was an Australian cricket player. Deane played one test for the Australia national women's cricket team. Deane was the 20th woman to play cricket for Australia.

Healesville Sanctuary

Healesville Sanctuary, formally known as the Sir Colin MacKenzie Sanctuary, is a zoo specialising in native Australian animals. It is located at Healesville in rural Victoria, Australia, and has a history of breeding native animals. It is one of only two places to have successfully bred a platypus, the other being Sydney's Taronga Zoo. It also assists with a breeding population of the endangered helmeted honeyeater.The zoo is set in a natural bushland environment where paths wind through different habitat areas showcasing wallabies, wombats, dingoes, kangaroos, and over 200 native bird varieties.

Guided tours, bird shows and information areas are available to visitors.

Jan Mitchell

Jan Mitchell (1940 – 17 March 2008) was an Australian artist, born in Melbourne, known for her painted bollards and work as a television graphic artist.

She spent her formative childhood years near Healesville, Victoria, before working in Ireland for 18 years, in the graphics department at RTÉ (Irish National television). Her pioneering work in Ireland included designing and creating the country's first pre-school television show, named after its red-haired central character Bosco.She returned to Australia in 1986 after 20 years in England and Ireland, and settled in Geelong in 1990, turning to book illustration, painting and printmaking. She created her first bollard art in Barwon Heads as part of an artist-in-schools program. She took the concept of the Baywalk Bollards to Geelong city commissioners in 1994, and by 1999 there were over 100 brightly painted bollards, made out of recovered wharf pylons, scattered along the foreshore, depicting notable characters relating to Geelong's history and culture. Her bollards can also be seen at Melbourne Airport and Avalon Airport.

Mitchell died of cancer on St Patrick's Day 2008, in Geelong. At her request, her ashes were scattered beside the lake at Glendalough, Ireland.

Joan Sydney

Joan Sydney (born 5 September 1938), is a former English-Australian actress, known for her work in radio, theatre, television serials and soap operas, of the latter best known as Valda Sheergold, in serial Neighbours and previously as Maggie Sloan (later Morrison) in A Country Practice and Mary Patchett in E Street.

Joseph Anderson Panton

Joseph Anderson Panton (2 June 1831 – 25 October 1913) was a Scottish-born Australian magistrate and goldfields commissioner.Panton was born in Knockiemil, Aberdeenshire, Scotland, the son of John Panton (of the Hudson's Bay Company service) and his wife Alexina McKay, née Anderson. Joseph Panton was educated at the Scottish Naval and Military Academy, developing an interest in drawing. He later studied geology amongst other subjects at the University of Edinburgh, but did not finish a degree.Panton's uncle, Colonel Joseph Anderson, suggested that he migrate to Australia; Panton arrived in Sydney aboard the Thomas Arbuthnot in March 1851. He then went to the Port Phillip District. After farming briefly at Mangalore, Panton tried for gold without luck at Mount Alexander. Then Panton applied for a position as an officer in the gold escort and was appointed assistant commissioner in 1852 at Kangaroo Gully near Bendigo, Victoria. A year later he was senior assistant commissioner at Bendigo and then senior commissioner in 1854.Panton investigated resentment against the Chinese gold-diggers and recommended a Chinese protectorate; this was adopted by Governor Charles Hotham in 1855. Panton had helped to organize the Melbourne Exhibition in 1854 and was a commissioner for the Melbourne International Exhibition (1880).In 1858, Panton went to Scotland and then to Paris to study art with a friend of his, Hubert de Castella. On Panton's return to Australia, he was appointed warden and magistrate at the Jamieson-Wood's Point and next at the Anderson's Creek goldfields. Panton then became magistrate at Heidelberg, where he also mapped the Yarra Valley, naming Panton Hill. Panton's Gap where the road to Ben Cairn and Donna Buang branches from the Don Road near Healesville, Victoria derives its name from a small house he had there. He also named Mount Donna Buang which he first called Mount Acland but renamed it after learning the Aboriginal name. From Heidelberg, Panton was transferred to Geelong and moved to Melbourne as senior magistrate from 1874 to 1907.Panton was active in the Victorian Artists Association and the Victorian Academy of Art which developed into the Victorian Artists Society. A fellow of the Royal Geographical Society (London), Panton was also vice-president of the Royal Geographical Society of Australasia, Victorian Branch.In 1895 Panton declined the honour of knighthood but was appointed Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George (CMG). Predeceased by his wife, he died at St. Kilda, Victoria on 25 October 1913 and was survived by two daughters, one of whom, Alice, was a well-known portrait painter.In 1882, the Victorian government botanist, Ferdinand von Mueller named a newly described plant from Western Australia, Eremophila pantonii in his honour.

Len Phillips (footballer, born 1890)

Leonard Vincent Phillips (14 April 1890 – 13 August 1968) was an Australian rules footballer who played with St Kilda and Essendon in the Victorian Football League (VFL).

List of intentional communities

This is a list of intentional communities. For directories, see external links below.

Little World Beverages

Little World Beverages Pty Ltd (LWB) is an Australian beverage and hospitality company, best known for its ownership of the Little Creatures brewery. Although often associated with the independent craft brewery movement in Australia, Little World Beverages is owned by the giant Japanese-controlled beverages company Lion Nathan, who acquired the company in 2012.The company was launched in November 2000 by several ex-staff and shareholders of the Matilda Bay Brewing Company (which had been sold to Carlton & United Beverages). The company was listed on the Australian Stock Exchange on 20 October 2005, using the ticker symbol LWB.

Maroondah Dam

The Maroondah Dam is a rock foundation concrete gravity dam with an uncontrolled rock chute spillway across the Watts River, located in the Central region of the Australian state of Victoria. The storage created by the dam is called Maroondah Reservoir. The principal purpose of the dam and its reservoir is to supply potable water for Greater Metropolitan Melbourne.

Moora Moora

Moora Moora is a co-operative residential community made up of a diverse group of about 50 adults and 20 children. They deliberately choose to live together in six small hamlets located on a co-operatively owned 245 hectare (600 acre) property situated at an altitude of 700 meters (2400 ft) on Mount Toolebewong.The community is situated near the township of Healesville (Victoria, Australia), approximately 67 km (90 minutes by car) to the East of the city of Melbourne. Melbourne is Australia's second largest city and capital of the state of Victoria. It is located in the South Eastern corner of continental Australia.

Richard Bowles

Richard Bowles (born 19 September 1978, in Leicester, England) is an Australian World-Record-Holding Adventurer based in Melbourne, Victoria. Richard has many world records running rugged mountain trails that cover the length of entire nations. He works closely alongside some of Australia's leading psychological experts in understanding human performance, resilience and perseverance, educating the business world from this unique understanding.

He is the first person to have run the world’s longest multi use marked trail; Australia’s Bicentennial National Trail (BNT) from Healesville, Victoria to Cooktown, Far North Queensland a total of 5,330 km along Australia’s Great Dividing Mountain Range, in just five months Richard completed the rugged wilderness trail end to end, while crossing crocodile infested rivers, and dealing crop growers with shotguns.

His achievements don’t end there. Only three weeks after completing the BNT, Richard was running on New Zealand's, Te Araroa Trail, another running the;km mountain trail, running the entire length of both islands, once again becoming the first and completing the tough and dangerous trail to wrap up 2012. Most of his days were spent in the snowline, through avalanche zones, raging white water river crossings.

Early 2013 he was once again on the run on Israel’s National Trail and in just 14 days covered its 1,009 km length. . At the end of that same year. He risked his life in the name of adventure running, when running around the base of the erupting Mount Sinabung volcano in North Sumatra, where the Indonesian Government had evacuated more than 80,000 people. It became a world first, with no one ever entering a restricted area to run this way.

In 2014 he set yet another record along South Australia' 1200 km Heysen Trail, averaging 85 km a day to complete the trail in just 14 days, smashing what was a 25-day record. More recently he has been involved with world-renowned Dr Ricardo Costa of Monash University, testing his unbelievable endurance fitness in the name of science and research. Covering 50 km a day for a week on a treadmill, while carry 12 kg in 32c. To replicate multi stage races and the nutrition requirement that are needed.

He works with psychology experts to understand how and why people do what they do. His research and unique approach is shared with corporations worldwide, helping senior management and teams of all sizes engage in, and commit to, long term objectives.

Ros Bates

Rosslyn Mary Bates (born 25 May 1962) is an Australian politician. Bates has been a Liberal National Party member of the Parliament of Queensland since March 2009, representing the electorate of Mudgeeraba.

Shire of Healesville

The Shire of Healesville was a local government area about 60 kilometres (37 mi) northeast of Melbourne, the state capital of Victoria, Australia. The shire covered an area of 466.20 square kilometres (180.0 sq mi), and existed from 1887 until 1994.

Star News Group

Star News Group is a local media company based in Pakenham, Victoria. It was founded by Albert Edward Thomas in 1909 as the Berwick Shire News and Pakenham and Cranbourne Gazette. Star News Group is still owned by the Thomas family and the company is managed by Paul Thomas, a fourth generation family member. The company changed its name to Star News Group in August 2005 to reflect the growth of the company and the diversity of regions that the company covers.

The company's community newspapers have a combined circulation of more than 500,000 copies per week. The company has many specialist real estate newspapers delivered free. In addition, Star News Group produces a number of niche education titles and lifestyle magazines including Casey Cardinia Kids and Geelong Coast Kids.

Star News Group also manages and owns 50% of the Mail News Group, a community newspaper group of five mastheads, Mountain Views Mail, Ranges Trader Mail, Upper Yarra Mail, Belgrave Ferntree Gully Mail and Mount Evelyn Mail in the Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges. This group is based in Healesville, Victoria and also produces a quarterly tourist publication and wedding magazine as well as Yarra Ranges Kids magazine.

The company owns several news titles, including the Pakenham and Berwick Gazette, Berwick News, Cranbourne News, Pakenham Officer News, Dandenong Cycling Journal, Journal News, Geelong Indy and Ocean Grove Voice, Noosa Today and Southern Free Times.

Star News Group in partnership with Domain own and operate six local media titles called Maribrynong Hobsons Bay Star Weekly, Brimbank Star Weekly, Melton Moorabool Star Weekly, Sunbury Macedon Ranges Star Weekly, Northern Star Weekly and Wyndham Star Weekly in Melbourne's West and North.

The company also provides education magazines through the Themes Media Education Publications arm of the organisation.

Star News Group also operates the community news focused web portal Star Community.

In March 2013 Star News Group expanded into New South Wales and Queensland when they purchased four titles.

In 2014 Star News Group acquired Noosa Today and Real Estate Lifestyle.

In 2015 the company purchased the Ocean Grove Voice, Voice on Pako and Go Bellarine.

Ulmus × hollandica 'Vegeta'

Ulmus × hollandica 'Vegeta', sometimes known as the Huntingdon Elm, is an old English hybrid cultivar raised at Brampton, near Huntingdon, by nurserymen Wood & Ingram in 1746, allegedly from seed collected from an Ulmus × hollandica hybrid at nearby Hinchingbrooke Park. The tree was given the epithet 'Vegeta' by Loudon, a name previously accorded the Chichester Elm by Donn, as Loudon considered the two trees identical. The latter is indeed a similar cultivar, but raised much earlier in the 18th century from a tree growing at Chichester Hall, Rawreth in Essex.

Wauconda, Washington

Wauconda is a small unincorporated community in Okanogan County, Washington, United States. Once a boom town, it has dwindled almost to nothing; it is now under single ownership.

Worawa Aboriginal College

Worawa Aboriginal College is a private boarding school in Healesville, Victoria, Australia. It was established by Hyllus Maris in 1983.The school was shut down in December 2007. It was re-opened in May 2008.

Climate data for Healesville (1927-1990)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 26.0
Average low °C (°F) 11.2
Average precipitation mm (inches) 56.9
Average rainy days 4.8 4.8 5.5 7.8 9.9 10.0 11.2 12.2 10.2 10.2 8.1 7.4 102.1
Source: Monthly climate statistics[4]
Suburbs of the Shire of Yarra Ranges

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