In 1837 Robert Hoddle surveyed the area later to be known as Thornbury. The name Thornbury came around 1850 when one early settler, Job Smith, named his property after a farm near his English birthplace.
- In 1889 the railway line was opened with a station built at Thornbury. A cable tramway followed in 1890 running the length of High St from Northcote to the Preston border.
- It wasn't till 1904 there was a direct train line from the city to Thornbury was linked by railway to Clifton Hill, establishing a faster route to Melbourne.
- S. G. Tomkins started his dairy at 40 Shaftesbury Parade in 1924. Like many local dairies, he lived in a building at the front of the property and established his milking sheds in the back of the property.
By 1914 a small cluster of shops existed on High Street and the first state school opened in 1915 to accommodate 559 children.
- The Thornbury Picture Palace was the first local picture theatre in Darebin, screening films in a hall for years before relocating to a larger premises in 1912.
- The Regent Theatre opened on 8th August 1925. The films selected for its Grand Opening being "Argentine Love" and "Hurricane Kid". These silent movies were supported by the Regent Grand Symphony Orchestra.
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