Local Insights – Clifton Hill

By Natalia Smith on 2 Aug 2013
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Often described as a ‘gentirified’ suburb, Clifton Hill offers liveability and a good arts scene, without being as alternative as nearby Fitzroy and Brunswick. The area has a very open-plan feel, even for a planned city. Several major roads and transport links pass through the suburb, but the parks and playgrounds reduce most of the noise.

As part of the City of Yarra, Clifton Hill residents benefit from the council’s commitment to sustainability, cultural diversity and community services. Youth services include arts, sports and learner driver programs while seniors can take part in an extensive activities program and receive specialist home and support services.

Shopping in the area is centred around Queen’s Parade, with its heritage fronted buildings and shop signs. Queens Parade offers a number of specialty shops, patisseries and restaurants without being so busy as to lose the area’s village feel. Popular spots include Cavallinis, Mixed Business and The Clifton Hill Hotel, which hosts regular live acoustic music every Wednesday.

A handful of newsagents, greengrocers and a post office meet most everyday needs, while larger scale shopping is available in neighbouring suburbs or by heading into the CBD. Vintage and retro fashion lovers can head to Fitzroy for its numerous alternative clothing, music and art stores. The 86 tram route which connects Clifton Hill, Fitzroy and the CBD also travels past some of Melbourne’s most famous street art.

Being a small suburb, Clifton Hill families benefit from a range of local and surrounding schools. Schools include Clifton Hill Primary School which recently underwent a $3 million development to build a new music room, library and multi-purpose hall. Students at CHPS consistently achieve NAPLAN scores that are ‘Above’ or ‘Substantially Above’ the Australian schools’ average. For high school students, nearby Northcote High School also regularly achieves outstanding results.

Parents seeking independent schools are close to both St John’s Parish Catholic Primary School and the highly renowned Sophia Mundi Rudolf Steiner School in Abbotsford which teaches years Prep-12.

Additionally, the area presents opportunities for extra-curricular learning at all ages with private art, dance and language tuition available. The Free University, on Queen’s Parade, promotes lifelong learning and provides free courses on a variety of topics to anyone interested.

About the Author

Natalia is an avid writer with strong interests in property, home and lifestyle and current affairs. A recent graduate with a Bachelor of Arts (Creative Writing) from the University of Melbourne, she is currently working on her first novel. In her spare time Natalia enjoys engaging with Melbourne's arts and crafts scene and getting involved with her local community.

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