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(3070, 8 km N, Darebin City)

This locality in Northcote took its name from the Croxton Park racecourse and hotel, in turn named after Croxton racecourse in England. The Croxton Park Hotel was the first in Northcote, originally known as the Pilgrim Inn (1850-51), later the Red House Inn, catering to travellers and bullock teamsters. To the rear of the hotel a grandstand was erected, and between 1869 and 1873 meetings were held at the Croxton racecourse, the first privately owned commercial racecourse in Victoria, not to be confused with the later Croxton or Fitzroy racecourse nearby. The private recreation ground adjacent to the hotel was a popular venue for local celebrations, open-air concerts, movies and amusements, as well as being used by local football, cricket and athletics teams. Residential development in the locality followed the opening of Croxton railway station in 1888. The original hotel was demolished in 1897, and its 20th-century successor is affectionately known as 'The Croc'.

Andrew May