Forest Hill is a residential suburb 17 km east of central Melbourne immediately south of Blackburn and Nunawading.
The area was originally known as Scotchman's Hill and Mt Pleasant in the 1860s. An early settler was Abraham Rooks (Rooks Road is on the east of Forest Hill), who was a Wesleyan. He was associated with the Mt Pleasant Wesleyan church (1865), which was the site of the area's first primary school. The church is now the Mt Pleasant Uniting Church.
The name Scotchman's Hill slightly predates 1860 when Scots farmers and woodcutters established a settlement. Both names gave way to Forest Hill, reputedly the name of a cottage occupied by a Captain Bunbury in 1841. The name certainly described the nature of the countryside when first encountered by European settlers.
Forest Hill is about 2 km south of the Box Hill to Lilydale railway, which resulted in it being unaffected by early land-subdivision schemes. It was mainly a fruit-growing district, with a general store, post office (1874), and a church. A State primary school was opened in 1926. The census population in 1933 was 286.
After World War II orchards near Nunawading were subdivided for housing and Forest Hill's population began to increase. Despite the relative remoteness of the area, a site at the corner of Canterbury and Mahoneys Roads was purchased in 1958 for a drive-in shopping centre, at about the same time as Myer was planning its first shopping centre at Chadstone. Forest Hill Chase, as it was later called, was ahead of its time and its retail catchment, and took another 20 years to achieve its potential. By the 1960s Forest Hill had within its area a baby health centre, swimming pool and sports reserve, the Nunawading high school (1955), and nascent shopping centre. Urban allotments bordered orchards, flower farms and poultry farms. The Parkmore primary school, in the east of Forest Hill, was opened in 1962. By 1970 Forest Hill's residential form was complete, with a grid street design predating the residential configuration concerned with lessening through traffic.
Forest Hill is best known for its regional shopping centre, but the name was attached to three secondary college campuses – the former Blackburn South (1960), and Nunawading (1955) high schools and, just outside Forest Hill's boundary, the Burwood Heights high school (1970) which is the sole Forest Hills campus. Forest Hill primary school closed in 1993. Forest Hill College had 528 pupils in 2014.
Forest Hill, Victoria
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Forest Hill Chase 3 Level View.JPG
The three levels of Forest Hill Chase Shopping Centre
Forest Hill is located in MelbourneForest HillForest Hill
Location in metropolitan Melbourne
Coordinates 37.842°S 145.172°ECoordinates: 37.842°S 145.172°E
Population 10,626 (2016 census)
• Density 2,590/km2 (6,710/sq mi)
Area 4.1 km2 (1.6 sq mi)
Location 18 km (11 mi) from Melbourne
LGA(s) City of Whitehorse
Suburbs around Forest Hill:
Blackburn Nunawading Mitcham
Blackburn South Forest Hill Vermont
Burwood East Burwood East Vermont South
Forest Hill is a suburb of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 18 km east of Melbourne's Central Business District. Its local government area is the City of Whitehorse. At the 2016 Census, Forest Hill had a population of 10,626. Forest Hill was recently ranked 93rd on Melbourne's most liveable suburb list, which was higher than other nearby popular suburbs such as Bentleigh, Mount Waverley and Glen Waverley.
The suburb is primarily made up of low to medium density residential housing.
Forest Hill Post Office opened on 1 March 1874 in the then rural area. It closed in 1895, reopened in 1902 and closed in 1976. The Forest Hills Centre office opened in 1965 shortly after the centre opened and was renamed Forest Hill in 1985.
Until 1994, Forest Hill was a part of the City of Nunawading local government area, but in December 1994 became part of the City of Whitehorse following the amalgamation of the former cities of Box Hill, Victoria and Nunawading.
In the 2016 census the population of Forest Hill was 10,626, approximately 52.5% female and 47.5% male.
The median/average age of the people in Forest Hill is 40 years of age. 56.6% of people living in the suburb of Forest Hill were born in Australia. The other top responses for country of birth were China (excludes SARs and Taiwan) 9.8%, India 3.4%, Malaysia 2.8%, Vietnam 2.4% and England 2.2%.
In Forest Hill 57.4% of people only spoke English at home. Other languages spoken at home included Mandarin 11.0%, Cantonese 6.8%, Greek 2.9%, Vietnamese 1.7% and Italian 1.7%. 47.6% of Forest Hill households spoke a language other than English.
The religious makeup of Forest Hill is No Religion, so described 33.1%, Catholic 20.2%, Not stated 7.6%, Anglican 7.5% and Buddhism 6.2%. Christianity was the largest religious group reported overall (50.8%) (this figure excludes not stated responses).
The median individual income is $582 per week and the median household income is $1344 per week.
The median rent in Forest Hill is $360 per week and the median mortgage repayment is $1950 per month.
Fremantle Media's Melbourne production facilities are located on Hawthorn Road Forest Hill, where the soap opera Neighbours is produced.
Forest Hill has one school located within the suburb, Parkmore Primary School. Other public and private schools are located nearby in adjoining suburbs and within short walking distance: Burwood Heights Primary School, Forest Hill Secondary College, Emmaus Catholic College and St. Timothy's Catholic Primary School.
Local sport includes many regular events and team sports. The suburb has an Australian Rules football team, the Forest Hill Zebras, competing in the Eastern Football League.
Nunawading Aqualink is located within the suburb, (Husband Road) containing an indoor, olympic-size swimming pool and children's pool. It also has a football Club The Forest Hill Zebras (Australian Rules Div. 4 Eastern Football League) at the Forest Hill Reserve (Husband Road), and a cricket club the Forest Hill Zebras (various divisions) at Mahoneys Reserve (Mahoneys Road) which also includes various soccer clubs, a clinic, a table tennis club, multiple badminton clubs and the 2nd Tally Ho scouts.
The Forest Hill Chase Shopping Centre includes a number of major retailers, such as Coles, Target, Harris Scarfe, JB Hi-Fi, Rebel Sport, TK Maxx, Aldi Woolworths, Hoyts Cinemas and a number of restaurants. There is also a Zone Bowling centre (formerly AMF) and Timezone.
"2016 Census QuickStats Forest Hill". Australian Bureau of Statistics. Retrieved 13 June 2019.
Postcode for Forest Hill, Victoria (near Melbourne) - Postcodes Australia
"Melbourne's most liveable suburbs ranked". Australian Real estate news. Retrieved 25 December 2015.
Phoenix Auctions History, Post Office List, retrieved 8 April 2021
"Global Television Homepage". Archived from the original on 16 April 2009. Retrieved 4 May 2009.
History of ATV10 Melbourne
Full Point Footy, Eastern Football League, archived from the original on 1 January 2009, retrieved 21 October 2008