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Suburb Profile: Cooks Hill

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The retailers on Darby Street will tell you Cooks Hill is a suburb that doesn’t sleep but will greet you with a smile and a coffee first thing in the morning.

As a melting pot of shopping, eating, drinking, exploring and celebrating options, this colourful suburb has changed immensely since its coal mining days but it has never abandoned its role as one of Newcastle’s best meeting places.

In 2022 City of Newcastle Council made a bid to continue progressing the suburb’s reputation as a socialising haunt by widening footpaths, adding curbside appeal, and lowering speed limits.

The popular strip that runs seven days a week is now home to creative festivals and family-friendly free events. 

Location: Postcode: 2300, LGA: Newcastle 

HISTORY: Named after wealthy landowner Samuel Cook, who was reputed as being one of the most progressive farmers of his time, Cooks Hill was originally a suburb that bordered coal mines in the area. It’s past can still be seen in its rows of Victorian terrace housing, turn of the century timber cottages and corner pubs.  

Following successful land sales in the area, a bustling commercial centre was formed by necessity when one of the few public access roads through AA Company Coal Mine land became more trafficked. This thoroughfare is what is today known as Darby Street. 

FOOD & DRINK: With Darby Street located at its heart, Cooks Hill is home to a plethora of eating and drinking establishments. Colloquially referred to as Newcastle’s “eat street”, there is a number of dining options available, from coffee stops in the morning to late-night kebab haunts, Asian eateries, pub grub and quick snacks on the go. 

SHOPPING: Cooks Hill’s other main temptation is its shopping, boasting retailers that stock unique, one-of-a-kind clothing, to iconic Newcastle gifts, surf wax, Australian label footwear, handmade ceramics, and gifts that you can’t source elsewhere in the city. And perhaps one of its greatest appeals is that the majority are open seven days a week. 

SCHOOLS: From preschool to senior campus there is no shortage of established government and independent education options within the 2300 postcode area, with families making up a large proportion of the suburb’s demographic.  

LANDMARKS: St John’s Anglican Church on Parry Street is the oldest remaining church building in Newcastle, completed in 1860. It sits walking distance to the YWCA Hunter on Dawson Street which recently celebrated 100 years of providing advocacy, programs and services connecting women and families to community. 

REAL ESTATE: Movable Newcastle real estate agent Jason Maxwell says Cooks Hill is a suburb that continues to be highly sought-after, with a median sale price increasing 1.9% to $1,330,000 over the past 12 months.  

Much of the suburb’s heritage can be seen in its buildings, Victorian terraces poised alongside former mining cottages, all of which feature in the City of Newcastle’s Cooks Hill conservation commitment. 

Forty-nine properties sold in the suburb during the past 12 months, with the average days on market from listing to selling just 61 days. 

The median asking rent is $650 per week – up 14% from 2021. 

“Recently the team at MOVABLE sold at auction 157A Dawson Street Cooks Hill,” Jason says. 

“This unrenovated weatherboard home sat on a corner block of just 420m2. 

“With an auction guide of bidding from $1,350,000, this property attracted more than 120 enquiries and eventually sold for $1,800,000.” 

SOLD

157A Dawson Street, Cooks Hill 2300 

3 bed 1 bath 1 car 420sq/m 

$1.8 million 

Sold 15 Oct 2022 

Anthony Merlo, MOVABLE Newcastle 

Cooks Hill
SOLD

3/278 Darby Street, Cooks Hill 2300 

2 bed 1 bath 1 car  

$770,000 

Sold 21 Nov 2022 

Laura Strong, Belle Property Group 

Cooks Hill
SOLD

61 Dawson Street, Cooks Hill 2300 

3 bed 1 bath 1 car 

$2.65 million 

Sold on 12 Nov 2022 

Donna Spillane, Spillane Property 

Cooks Hill
SOLD

23 Gibson Street, Cooks Hill 

3 bed 2 bath 1 car  

Townhouse 

$970,000 

Sold 21 Oct 2022 

Steve Dorman, Dowling Property 

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