Elsternwick is an inner suburb of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 9 km south-east of Melbourne's central business district. Its local government area is the City of Glen Eira. At the 2016 Census Elsternwick had a population of 10,349.

Administrative division

In terms of its cadastral division, Elsternwick is in the parish of Prahran within the County of Bourke.


Elsternwick is bounded by the Nepean Highway, Elster Avenue, Kooyong Road, Glen Eira Road, and Hotham Street (the continuation of Williams Road).

Although no longer officially in "Elsternwick", the cricket ground, originally the home of the Elsternwick Cricket Club, and currently known as the Sportscover Arena, is located within the larger area known as Elsternwick Park — located at the junction of the Nepean Highway and Glen Huntly Road — as is the former Elsternwick Park Golf Course.


In the same way that Ripponlea took its name from the "Rippon Lea Estate" of Sir Frederick Sargood, Elsternwick took its name from the largest property in the district: Charles Ebden's house Elster (Elster is German for "magpie [de]").[2] The area was previously known as Red Bluff.

The creek nearby became known as the Elster Creek; and, when a village grew up on the creek, the Anglo-Saxon suffix ‘wick’, meaning village, was added.[3]


The Elsternwick village was proposed in 1851 [4]. Elsternwick was originally situated across three municipalities - Caulfield, Brighton and St Kilda. At the end of the 1880s unsuccessful attempts were made for Elsternwick to become administratively independent. Today it is in the Local Government Area of the City of Glen Eira. The postcode is 3185.

Elsternwick village was surveyed in 1856, and Elsternwick Post Office opened on 22 June 1860.[4]

In 1861 a railway line, operated by the Melbourne and Hobson's Bay United Railway Company, was built from Melbourne to Brighton, via Elsternwick. The Elsternwick train station is on the Sandringham metropolitan train line Glen Huntly Road. The first site of Caulfield Grammar School, founded in 1881, was adjacent to the Elsternwick railway station.

In the 1880s, the Elsternwick railway station was also the Melbourne end of the railway line to the large-scale sugar beet processing mill at Rosstown (see Rosstown Railway) — now known as Carnegie — and beyond. This railway was seldom used, and it ceased to function in 1916.

A tramline was opened along Glen Huntly Road in 1889. Another tramline, running between Elsternwick and , was opened on 4 June 1915,[5] and was closed on 22 October 1960.[6]

The former ABC studios in Melbourne were located in Gordon Street, Elsternwick near Ripponlea. The studios were built during the 1950s and 1960s and were decommissioned in 2017. Many programs were filmed and produced in the studios, such as Countdown, Recovery and Adam Hills in Gordon Street Tonight.[7]


Shopping strip of Glen Huntly Road

Glen Huntly Road in Elsternwick has a variety of cafés and restaurants, and Elsternwick is the home of perhaps the best-known brothel in Australia, and certainly Melbourne; Daily Planet, which was the first in the world to be listed on a stock exchange (the Australian Securities Exchange).[8]

Hattam (Mens and Boys Wear) Stores, at 383 Glenhuntly Road, a long, narrow shop, is one of the last locations in Australia that still has a Lamson "Rapid Wire" Cash Carrier in place; it connects three locations in the lower section of the shop with the central cashier's desk.[9]

The 2017 season of The Block was located in Elsternwick in Regent St.


Elsternwick Congregational Church

In the 2016 Census, there were 10,349 people in Elsternwick. 65.3% of people were born in Australia. The next most common countries of birth were England 3.9%, New Zealand 1.9%, India 1.7%, South Africa 1.7% and China 1.5%. 73.0% of people spoke only English at home. Other languages spoken at home included Greek 2.6%, Hebrew 2.0%, Russian 1.9%, Yiddish 1.8% and Mandarin 1.7%. The most common responses for religion were No Religion 35.5%, Catholic 18.0%, and Judaism 17.8%.[1]


Elsternwick railway station, part of the Sandringham railway line, is located on Riddell Parade next to Glen Huntly Road. For a number of years (in the late 1800s and early 1900s) it was also where the Rosstown Railway linked up with the Sandringham railway line.

Melbourne Tram Route No. 67 links Elsternwick to the Melbourne CBD. It travels along Glen Huntly Road from Carnegie, through Glen Huntly and South Caulfield to Elsternwick and, then, via Brighton Road and St Kilda Road to the CBD, via Swanston Street. It terminates at the tram stop outside the University of Melbourne University, in Carlton.


The Elsternwick Cricket Club was founded in August 1901. The Elsternwick Main Oval, now known as Sportscover Arena or Elsternwick Park, was established shortly after the club's foundation. The 'Wickas', as the club is affectionately known, plays in the Victorian Sub-District Cricket Association.[10]

Golfers played at Elsternwick Park Golf Club, also known as Royal Elsternwick, on Glen Huntly Road until 2018, when the course closed to be used as passive open space.[11]

The Elsternwick Croquet Club, founded in 1911, is situated in the Hopetoun Gardens.


State Schools

The — once officially located in "Brickwood Street, Elsternwick" — is now, without any shift in its physical position, officially located in Murphy Street, Brighton ([5]); and, consequently, the suburb currently has no government schools.

Private Schools

Heritage sites

Built as a public hall in 1889 and converted into a cinema in 1911, Classic Cinemas is Melbourne's oldest continuously running cinema

Elsternwick contains a number of heritage-listed sites, including:

Notable Elsternwick people

  • (1890-1976), public servant, soldier, businessman, right wing activist and public benefactor lived in Elsternwick from as early as the 1920s until his death.
  • Hildred Butler (1906–1975), microbiologist, born in Elsternwick.
  • Joan Chambers, née Murray (1930–2016), Member of the Victorian Legislative Assembly, born in Elsternwick.
  • "Chris" Christiansen (1913–2007), radio astronomer and electrical engineer, grew up in Elsternwick.
  • Ben Cousins (1978-), former AFL footballer.[19][20]
  • Moira Dynon, née Shelton (1920–1976), welfare worker and scientist, born in Elsternwick.
  • Joyce Evans (1929-), photographer, artist, gallery director, born in Elsternwick.
  • Ray Groom (1944-), lawyer, sportsman, and politician, born in Elsternwick.
  • Joy St. Clair Hester (1920–1960), artist, born in Elsternwick.[21]
  • Sir Edwin William Hicks (1910–1984), public servant and diplomat, born in Elsternwick.
  • Edward Honey (1885–1922), journalist, born in Elsternwick, suggested the "Two-minute silence" observed on 11 November each year.
  • Dave Hughes (1970–), comedian; purchased a house built on The Block 2017.
  • Les Johnson (1908–January 1942), Essendon and North Melbourne Footballer, killed in action in World War II, born in Elsternwick.
  • William Joynt VC (1889–1986), soldier, printer and publisher, born in Elsternwick.
  • Geoffrey Lemprière OBE (1904–1977), woolbuyer and soldier, born in Elsternwick.
  • Samuel Mauger (1857–1936), reformer, manufacturer, politician, died in Elsternwick.
  • Keith Miller (1919–2004), a resident of Elsternwick in his childhood.
  • Enid Moodie-Heddle (1904-1991), poet and children's author, born in Elsternwick.
  • Sir Alister Murdoch (1912–1984), air force officer, born in Elsternwick.[22]
  • Harold Parker (1892—1917), St Kilda footballer, killed in First World War.
  • Bill Ponsford (1900–1991), a resident in the 1920s and 1930s.
  • Peter Rowsthorn (1963-), actor and comedian.
  • Roy Schilling (1896–1979), politician, died in Elsternwick.
  • Percival Serle (1871–1951), accountant, biographer, and bibliographer, born in Elsternwick.
  • George Strickland (1942-), Member of the Western Australian Legislative Assembly, born in Elsternwick.
  • Frederick Taylor (1810–1872), squatter and mass murderer.
  • Richard Toutcher (1861–1941), politician, died in Elsternwick.
  • Sir Alexander George Wales (1885–1962), businessman, politician, Lord Mayor of Melbourne, died in Elsternwick.
  • Charlie Watts (1895–1965), soldier and cleric, born in Elsternwick.
  • (1915–1961), champion golfer, born in Elsternwick.[23]

Residential architecture

Non-residential architecture

Open space

See also


  1. ^ a b Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Elsternwick (State Suburb)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 11 February 2013. Edit this at Wikidata
  2. ^ Victorian Place Names, The (Sydney) Truth, (Sunday, 30 November 1913), p.9.
  3. ^ See Archived 1 October 2006 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ Premier Postal History, Post Office List, retrieved 11 April 2008
  5. ^ Electric Tramways, The Age, (Saturday, 5 June 1915), p.13; Opening of the Elsternwick to Point Ormond Electric Tram Line, The Punch (Melbourne), (Thursday, 10 June 1915), p.20.
  6. ^ The tram had no "route number".
  7. ^ https://www.afr.com/property/abc-puts-historic-elsternwick-studios-on-the-market-20180926-h15vef
  8. ^ Sex and the market
  9. ^ The Cash Railway Website: Hattam Stores, Elsternwick.
  10. ^ [1]. Retrieved November 2010
  11. ^ "Elsternwick Golf Course soon to be transferred to open space". Retrieved 15 May 2019.
  12. ^ "Rippon Lea House and Garden". National Heritage List. Department of the Environment and Energy. Retrieved 14 May 2019.
  13. ^ "Rippon Lea". Victorian Heritage Register. Heritage Council of Victoria. Retrieved 14 May 2019.
  14. ^ "Metropolitan Fire Brigade Station (former), 2-4 Selwyn St, Elsternwick, VIC, Australia". Commonwealth Heritage List. Department of the Environment and Energy. Retrieved 14 May 2019.
  15. ^ "Former Elsternwick Fire Station". Victorian Heritage Register. Heritage Council of Victoria. Retrieved 14 May 2019.
  16. ^ "Former Union Church". Victorian Heritage Register. Heritage Council of Victoria. Retrieved 14 May 2019.
  17. ^ "Former Elsternwick Tram Substation". Victorian Heritage Register. Heritage Council of Victoria. Retrieved 14 May 2019.
  18. ^ "Former Elsternwick Post Office". Victorian Heritage Register. Heritage Council of Victoria. Retrieved 14 May 2019.
  19. ^ [2] Archived 26 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 8 July 2010
  20. ^ [3]. Retrieved 8 July 2010
  21. ^ Janine, Burke. "Hester, Joy St Clair (1920–1960)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Australian National University.
  22. ^ Thomson, D.S. "Murdoch, Sir Alister Murray (1912–1984)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Australian National University.
  23. ^ Shaw, A.G.L. "Williams, Harry Llewellyn (1915–1961)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Australian National University.

External links