Local communities

Map of Shire showing five wards

 

Hepburn Shire is in Dja Dja Wurrung country in central Victoria. The Dja Dja Wurrung people performed age-old ceremonies of celebration, initiation and renewal; pastoralists arrived and then the goldrush from 1850 drew many cultures including Swiss-Italians whose stone houses and food traditions are celebrated today.

Our shire is close to Melbourne and its forests, natural springs and rolling landscapes make it popular with visitors. Walking trails, locally-grown food, casual and formal dining options, extensive accommodation and creative arts offerings (galleries, festivals), markets and festivals enhance that appeal.

Agriculture, manufacturing, tourism and construction collectively contributes about half the shire’s economic output. Construction contributes 14.29%, the most of any sector. The health care and social assistance industry employs the most people – providing 16.2% of all jobs.

Our Shire

Area: 1473 sq.km

Population: 16,281

Annual population growth rate: 1.31% (2011 to 2016)

Projected population by 2036: 17,700

Council offices: Daylesford (administrative centre), Clunes, Creswick and Trentham.

Biggest employers by sector: Health care and social assistance; tourism including accommodation and food services

Biggest economic output sector: Construction 

New houses approved: 142 (2020/2021); 90 (2019/2020)

Annual economic output: $1.3b

Biggest age group: 60-69 years

Median age: 51 years

Want more?

Read the REMPLAN community profile or economic profile of the Shire. 

Major centres

If you've just moved the Shire be sure to visit our new residents page to find everything you need to know about life in this wonderful part of the world.

Creswick (pop. 3146)

Famous as the birthplace of some very famous Australian sons, Prime Minister John Curtin and artist Norman Lindsay, Creswick is as beautiful as it is historic. Check out forestry pioneer John La Gerche’s magnificent forest walk and lakeside walking trail that highlight his work.

Delve further into local art and history at the Creswick Museum, where Lindsay family works are displayed.

Unwind in one the many local cafes and restaurants showcasing regional produce. Or tee off at the international-class golf course designed by Robert Allenby and Tony Cashmore at the RACV Goldfields Resort.

Look up during a bush walk through Creswick Regional Park. You might be rewarded with the sight of koalas. And keep an eye out at nearby St George’s Lake for the elusive platypus.

Daylesford (pop. 2552)

Daylesford is one of Victoria’s most romantic and relaxing towns. Whether it’s physical sustenance at one of Daylesford’s award-winning eateries, or nourishment in world-famous mineral springs and spa resorts, there's lots to love about this part of the world.

Natural attractions range from the stately gardens of Wombat Hill Botanical Park, to the serenity of Lake Daylesford, to the rugged terrain and trails of Hepburn Regional Park. If fossicking about in boutiques and galleries and Sunday markets is your thing, Daylesford has plenty to offer.

Daylesford beckons no matter the season. Its shady boulevards in spring and summer turn brilliant shades of red and gold in autumn. Winter is the time for enjoying open fires, local food, and the cosiness of Daylesford village life.

Clunes (pop.1751)

The wide streets and beautifully preserved 19th century architecture of this charming gold rush town make it a film-set favourite. The cable TV company, HBO, filmed its hit series, The Leftovers, here.

Recognised for its second-hand bookshops as one of the world’s 15 internationally recognised Book towns, Clunes also hosts regional Australia’s biggest book show. Each May, literature lovers flock here to hear authors, join conversations and browse endless book stalls.

Try bush walking and rock climbing in nearby Mount Beckworth Scenic Reserve - it’s fab for wildlife and wildflowers - and book in for palette-pleasing food and wine at local eateries. If you're visiting, make sure you settle in at a local B&B, boutique hotel, cottage or cabin. There’s plenty to choose from.

Clunes is 40 minutes by car from Daylesford and 75 minutes from Melbourne’s West Gate Bridge. Or take the train from Melbourne.

Trentham (pop.1173)

For a tiny town, Trentham packs a punch. Not just for its famous cool country and tasty spuds, but for its lesser known gems too. A quaint village retaining many historical buildings and a charming streetscape, it also boasts pretty botanical gardens and shady tree-lined streets.

Situated half way between Woodend and Daylesford, high on the Great Dividing Range, Trentham’s soil is famous for growing potatoes and a variety of seasonal produce. From chestnuts and cherries, to heirloom fruits and olives, there isn’t much that won’t flourish in this rich, volcanic dirt.

Check out its restaurants and award-warning sourdough-bread bakery. Enjoy cuisine from casual to elegant, in front of open fires in winter or under trees in a magnificent beer garden in the warmer months. If visiting in winter, you might be lucky enough to go scouting for truffles.

Nearby is Trentham Falls, Victoria’s highest single-drop waterfall.

If you’re up for a more energetic adventure, the region’s forest tracks can be enjoyed on foot, on bike or even horseback. Popular is the appetite-building 6km walk from Trentham to the Radio Springs Hotel in nearby Lyonville, which offers great hospitality, good food and music.

Hepburn Springs (pop.601)

Founded by Swiss-Italian immigrants, Hepburn Springs sits amid the highest concentration of mineral springs in the country. Unwind in a local spa, ‘take the waters’, or give your weary muscles over to the hands of some of Australia’s best healers and massage therapists.

And when you’re fully refreshed, get out and see this historic town’s restored Victorian, Edwardian, and Art Deco architecture, charming cafes, and quirky galleries. Explore the springs and trails of Hepburn Regional Park, hike the Tipperary Track, and venture forth into Mount Franklin Reserve, Hepburn Regional Park and the Old Hepburn Pool.

Or combine a round of golf with a wildlife safari at the 18-hole Hepburn Springs Golf Club, where you’ll more than likely play through a mob of mildly curious kangaroos.

Localities in the Shire

Allendale, Bald Hills, Basalt, Blackwood North, Blampied, Broomfield, Bullarook, Bullarto, Bullarto South, Cabbage Tree, Campbelltown, Clunes, Clydesdale, Coomoora, Creswick, Creswick North, Daylesford, Dean, Denver, Drummond, Drummond North, Dry Diggings, Dunach, Eganstown, Elevated Plains, Evansford, Fern Hill, Franklinford, Glengower, Glenlyon, Guildford, Hepburn, Hepburn Springs, Invermay, Kingston, Kooroocheang, Korweinguboora, Langdons Hill, Lawrence, Leonards Hill, Little Hampton, Lyonville, Malmsbury, Mollongghip, Mount Beckworth, Mount Cameron, Mount Franklin, Mount Prospect, Musk, Musk Vale, Newbury, Newlyn, Newlyn North, Porcupine Ridge, Rocklyn, Sailors Falls, Sailors Hill, Sandon, Shepherds Flat, Smeaton, Smokey Town, Spring Hill, Springmount, Stony Creek, Strangways, Sulky, Taradale, Tarilta, Trentham, Trentham East, Tylden, Tylden South, Ullina, Wattle Flat, Waubra, Werona, Wheatsheaf and Yandoit.