Historical information

Taken from outside the family home on the southest corner of the intersection of Nyora Road and Pitt Street with Eucalyptus Road.

Frank Stokes first traveled to the district by train in 1944 to find land with the intention to establish an orchard. By chance he met Arthur Bird of Bird Orchard (bounded by Pitt Street, Eucalyptus Road and Wattle Grove) and they got talking over their common interest. Arthur put Frank up for the night and pointed out the land, part of Crown Allotment 15, Section 5, Parish of Nillumbik (CA15) somewhat diagonally opposite Bird Orchard. Frank bought the land and for the next two years would travel by train from Melbourne to Eltham every weekend establishing Stokes Orchard and building a home for his family, which they eventually moved into in 1946.

Marjorie North remembered well the winter of 1951, when she took children, including son John together with the Shallard and Squire children “in the Austin A40 up the Main Rd., Eltham to farmer Bell’s property alongside the Eltham College. They were able to make a snow man and throw snowballs. (Diamond Valley News, August 5, 1986.p.42)

In the mid 1970s the Shire of Eltham divided the orchard up into numerous rate-able parcel lots, which became affordable for Frank. As a consequence Stokes Orchard was turned into a housing development by Macquarie Builders and marketed as the Stokes Orchard Estate in two stages; Stage 1 encompassing Scarlet Ash Court, Ironbark Close and Peppermint Grove bounded by Nyora and Eucalyptus roads c.1976 and Stage 2 encompassing Stokes Place, Orchard Way, The Crest and The Lookout bound by Nyora and Diosma roads c.1979. The development of Orchard Way, The Crest and The Lookout did not proceed as planned due to the lack of the sewer along Diosma Road and so many of the proposed lots were incorporated into five-acre parcels instead.


Representative of the orchard growing areas of Eltham. One of the rare times it has snowed in Eltham.

Physical description

Digital file only - Digitised by EDHS from a scrapbook (containing commercially printed photos of digital scans) on loan from Beryl Bradbury (nee Stokes), daughter of Frank Stokes.