War memorial and park in the middle of the Western Highway as it passes through Nhill
|Population||2,184 (2016 census)|
|Elevation||133.0 m (436 ft)|
|LGA(s)||Shire of Hindmarsh|
Nhill is a town in the Wimmera, in western Victoria, Australia. Nhill is located on the Western Highway, halfway between Adelaide and Melbourne. At the 2011 census, Nhill had a population of 2278. "Nhill" is believed to be a Wergaia word meaning "early morning mist rising over water" or "white mist rising from the water".
The town is home to a community of Karen people. Originally coming to Australia as refugees, the Karen community settled in Nhill in the early 2010s to work at the Luv-a-Duck food processing facility. In 2012, there were over 100 Karen residents in Nhill.
The formally recognised traditional owners for the area in which Nhill sits are the Wotjobaluk, Jaadwa, Jadawadjali, Wergaia and Jupagik Nations. These Nations are represented by the Barengi Gadjin Land Council Aboriginal Corporation.
The area has been home to the Aboriginal people for thousands of years and was first visited by Europeans in 1845. The famous Aboriginal tracker and cricketer, Dick-a-Dick, later claimed to have been present at the first meeting between the Wotjobaluk and Europeans. Brothers Frank and John Oliver decided to build a flour mill on Crown land beside the Dimboola-Lawloit road, the township of Nhill grew from there.
As of the 2016 census, 2,184 people resided in Nhill. The median age of persons in Nhill was 48 years. Children aged 0–14 years made up 15.1% of the population. People over the age of 65 years made up 27.8% of the population There were slightly more females than males with 51.6% of the population female and 48.4% male. The average household size is 2.2 persons per household. The average number of children per family for families with children is 1.8.
81.4% of people in Nhill were born in Australia. Of all persons living in Nhill, 1.0% (22 persons) were Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people. This is higher than for the state of Victoria (0.8%) and lower than the national average (2.8%). The most common ancestries in Nhill were English 31.5%, Australian 30.4%, German 10.7%, Scottish 7.2% and Irish 5.3%.
Industry and facilities
The major employer in the town is Luv-a-Duck—a duck meat grower and processor—and associated businesses. Tourism is another local industry; Nhill services the highway traffic passing through. Nhill is recognised by the transport industry as the halfway point by road between Melbourne and Adelaide. Transport companies use Nhill as their 'changeover' point. Nhill railway station is serviced by The Overland that stops three times a week. Air services are at Nhill Airport. Bus services are provided by V/Line and Firefly several times daily.
Nhill has three hotels; the Commercial Hotel, the Farmers Arms Hotel and the Union Hotel. Nhill has a caravan park and a number of motels.
Events and attractions
The Nhill Show is held each year on the second Thursday of October. It includes rides, farm animals, rural Australian farm machinery, horse riding show, art competitions, cooking competitions, photo competitions and at the closing of the Show there is a fireworks display. Up until 2012 Nhill hosted a "Duck & Jazz Festival" in mid February.
The release of the film Road to Nhill in 1997 briefly placed Nhill in the national spotlight.
The Nhill Aviation Heritage Centre is located at nearby historical Nhill airport. Included in its displays is a rare Avro Anson aircraft undergoing restoration. In April 2018, it also acquired a rare Wirraway aeroplane, to much public support and fanfare.
The Australian Pinball Museum is located at the eastern side of Nhill adjacent to an old "Route 66"-esque motel. Included in its displays of rare pinball related artwork and memorabilia is the largest selection of pinball machines available to play in Australia.
Nhill has an Australian Rules football team competing in the Wimmera Football League. Nhill is also the base of the Cricket competition known as the West Wimmera Cricket Association. Nhill & Districts sporting club which includes football, Netball, Hockey and Cricket. Also it has a Tennis club and Pony Club. Nhill has a golf course at the Nhill Golf Club on Netherby Road.
Nhill is the hometown of former Australian rules football player Jason McCartney, who suffered severe injuries during the 2002 Bali terrorist bombing, and later recovered enough to make a comeback to the sport.
Leading Australian business man Maurice Koop, a founder of Pappas, Carter, Evans and Koop, is a Nhill native.
- Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Nhill (State Suburb)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 5 February 2018.
- "Shire of Hindmarsh, Locality (Suburb)Names and Boundaries" (PDF). Locality names and boundary maps. Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, State Government of Victoria. Archived from the original (PDF) on 10 April 2017. Retrieved 21 March 2017.
- "West Wimmera Shire, Town and Rural District Names and Boundaries" (PDF). Locality names and boundary maps. Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, State Government of Victoria. Archived from the original (PDF) on 18 October 2015. Retrieved 21 March 2017.
- Australian Bureau of Statistics (31 October 2012). "Nhill (State Suburb)". 2011 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 9 November 2016.
- "Hindmarsh Planning Scheme" (PDF). Retrieved 24 January 2009.
- The Horsham Times, "The discovery of Nhill", 2 June 1944, p. 4.
- "Contact Us". Hindmarsh Shire Council. Retrieved 10 August 2013.
- O'Connor, Ted (20 April 2012). "Housing hassles for Nhill's Karen community". Wimmera Mail-Times. Retrieved 18 May 2012.
- "Map of formally recognised traditional owners". Aboriginal Victoria. Retrieved 2 June 2019.
- "Welcome to Barengi Gadjin Land Council". Barengi Gadjin Land Council. Retrieved 2 June 2019.
- Bound, Frank (1980), Nhill's Fabulous Century, Maryborough, Vic: Hedges & Bell Pty. Ltd, ISBN 0-9594744-0-4
- Premier Postal History, Post Office List, retrieved 11 April 2008
- "Royal Australian Air Force Base Nhill Memorial". Monument Australia.
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- "Australian Pinball Museum Official Website". Australian Pinball Museum Official Website.
- "Father and son unveil what could just be one of the Australia's most unique collections". Herald Sun. Retrieved 2 November 2017.
- Golf Select, Nhill, retrieved 11 May 2009
- Country Racing Victoria, Wimmera Racing at Nhill, retrieved 7 May 2009
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- "Biography for POWELL, Janet Frances". ParlInfo.
- The Encyclopedia of AFL Footballers
- "2013 World Rowing Championships: (W4-) Women's Four - Final". worldrowing.com.
- "Planetary Names: Categories for Naming Features on Planets and Satellites". planetarynames.wr.usgs.gov.
- "Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature - Nhill on Mars". International Astronomical Union (IAU) Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature. Retrieved 10 July 2014.
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