Albion, on the Western Highway, 1 km west of Sunshine, is 13 km west of central Melbourne.
In 1848, during a period of anti-Irish sentiment, three Melbourne residents acquired one square mile of land as a place for English people to live, and named it Braybrook. Its location is now in Sunshine North, north of the Western Highway and east of McIntyre Road. After the Braybrook village was surveyed, to the east, the 1848 land became Albion village, a name with an unmistakable English connection. Being situated on the Western Highway, the Braybrook and Albion hotels were convenient stopping places.
Situated in basalt country, the Albion quarry was opened in 1860. Basalt was cut from it for railway works, culverts, bridges and ballast, from the turn of the century. It later became the Sunshine tip, then the Sunshine Energy Park and is now a public reserve with facilities for sporting clubs.
In 1920 the Albion railway station was opened and two years later John Darling and Son built the landmark silos and flour mill beside the station. They are on the Victorian heritage register. There had been a short lived Anglican primary school (1855-72), and a State primary school was opened in 1926.
Albion has several workers’ housing estates. There are H.V. McKay houses in Sydney Street and King Edward Avenue, houses in Barclay Street, Ferguson Street and Hayden Crescent, and war service homes in Sydney, Coolamon and Gunnedah Streets.
Present day Albion extends westwards from the old Albion village, between the Western Ring Road and the Kororoit Creek. At the creek there is an octagonal park with streets radiating from it. The park has a community centre and sports facilities. The neighbourhood includes the primary school (157 pupils in 2014), a Catholic primary school (1951) and church, and corner shops. (There is also an Albion North primary school (1962) in Sunshine North). The Albion Explosives Factory, built between 1940-45 and 1954-80, was in Deer Park, about 2 km away.
Albion’s census populations have been:
At the 2011 census English was spoken at home by 42.6% of residents (Victoria 72.4%) and Vietnamese by 6.5% of residents (Victoria 1.6%). At the 2011 census the median income of residents was 74% of the Victorian median. At the 2011 census flats and units were 36.7% of occupied dwellings (Victoria 12.9%) and separate houses were 55.1% (Victoria 76.9%).