As was the case with many of the settlements to the west of Melbourne, the gold rush opened up the town of Essendon as a constant stream of miners passed through the village on their way to and from the digging fields.
A gold rush of a different but no less dramatic kind over the last two decades has confirmed Essendon as one of the great sporting nurseries of the nation as the mighty Bombers have cemented their place as arguably the dominant Aussie Rules club in the land.
Essendon certainly has one of the greatest national followings in the Australian Football League (AFL) and the Bombers’ outstanding on-field performances in recent years have made the suburb one of the most recognisable in Australia.
Essendon is within a few minutes drive of two of Melbourne's premier race tracks, Flemington and Moonee Valley. Come the spring, the racing world is tuned into Flemington for the running of the 3200m Melbourne Cup, one of the great races on the international calendar which attracts the best staying horses from Britain, Asia and Australasia.