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Cooks Hill, New South Wales facts for kids

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Cooks Hill
NewcastleNew South Wales
Population 3,621 (2016 census)
 • Density 4,020/km2 (10,400/sq mi)
Postcode(s) 2300
Area 0.9 km2 (0.3 sq mi)
Location 2 km (1 mi) from Newcastle CBD
LGA(s) City of Newcastle
State electorate(s) Newcastle
Federal Division(s) Newcastle
Suburbs around Cooks Hill:
Hamilton East Newcastle West Newcastle
Hamilton East Cooks Hill The Hill
The Junction Bar Beach Pacific Ocean

Cooks Hill is an inner city suburb of Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia. It is typified by its tree lined streets, rows of Victorian terrace housing, turn of the century timber cottages and corner pubs.

Cooks Hill had a population of 3,621 in 2016.


Cooks Hill is probably most renowned for the popular 'eat street' - Darby Street. Darby Street has approximately 25 restaurants and cafés some which enjoy alfresco dining. It is also diverse in character and is home to many of the city's well-known pubs, such as The Cricketers Arms Hotel, The Oriental Hotel, The Delaney and the Commonwealth Hotel.

The suburb is also home to the Newcastle Region Art Gallery in Laman Street. The Gallery houses many works by significant artists, including works by Sidney Nolan, William Dobell, Russell Drysdale and Peter Preston and it is the custodian of a substantial public art collection.

Cooks Hill has a number of smaller inner city art galleries, previously including the Von Bertouch Gallery founded by the late Anne Von Bertouch. It is believed it was the first commercial gallery outside a capital city in Australia. The area also hosts a visual arts scene and several artist-run projects such as the Back to Back gallery.

The suburb is represented sporting-wise by Cooks Hill United Football Club (the flagship being the NewFM 1st Div. squad) and the Cooks Hill Rugby Union Football Club (the "Brown Snakes").

The Brown Snakes were established in 2007 as a youth-oriented senior Rugby club and have Empire Park, Bar Beach as their home ground. In 2016, the Brown Snakes certified themselves as the most successful Rugby Union team in New South Wales when they won both the Presidents Cup and the Patron's Shield in their 10 year anniversary, defeating East Maitland and East Mayfield respectively led courageously by club stalwarts Lauchie Turner and Adam Edwards; before going on an absolute bender for approximately 4 days.

Cooks Hill United Football Club plays its NewFM & Zone League One games at the Newcastle Athletics Field. All Age and Junior games are played at National Park No4 & No.6. The ZPL 1st grade team became inaugural Major Premiers of the new Zone Football League: Premier League Division, beating Morisset FC 1-2 in the Grand Final on Sunday, 18 September 2011 at Wanderers Oval, Broadmeadow. On Sunday 16 September 2012, Cooks Hill made it a '3peat' when they won their third Major Semi final in a row beating Warners Bay 0-1 at Jack McLaughlan Oval, Edgeworth. The first win in the run of three started with the club having won the ID1 1st grade Grand final against Cardiff City FC at Warners Bay Oval, winning 2-0 on Sunday 18 September 2010.

Newcastle Visitor Information Centre provides Cultural Precinct Guides listing all the galleries.


Cooks Hill grew from coal mines in the area. Land sales developed from Brooks Street onto Darby Street to create the commercial centre there today. Darby Street was originally known as Lake Macquarie Road and was one of the few public access roads through AA Company Coal Mine land.

It was named after Thomas Cook, or perhaps his father Samuel, who were wealthy landowners from the Upper Hunter. Samuel retired to a house on a hill " Lucerna " with views to the Northeast over Newcastle Harbour, on land now occupied by the Newcastle Conservatorium, Laman St, opposite St Andrew's church [ see reference for photo ]. Low-lying ground and swamp was found in abundance locally, the market gardens near Marketown on Parry St often flooded due to poor drainage into Cottage Creek, and so elevated land was of some value.

Cooks Hill was badly damaged when at 10.27am on 28 December 1989, Newcastle experienced an earthquake measuring 5.5 on the Richter scale which killed 13 people, injured 162 and destroyed or severely damaged over 25,000 buildings, many of which had to be subsequently demolished. It was the first in Australian history known to claim human lives.

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