A Semi -Regular Photo Blog about Life in Northern New South Wales, Australia.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Goonoowigal - Nhuta Karra-Kara

When the Mission and Reserve system broke down in the late 19th century, the remnants of the Jukambal people moved to Goonoowigal. They were not allowed to live in the nearby town of Inverell. Goonoowigal became a typical fringe dwellers camp until the mid 1960's.
When the reminisces of those who lived here were collected it was a place, that despite the terrible conditions was remembered fondly for the community atmosphere, the abundance of bush tucker and the fact that white people didn't interfere with their day to day lives. 

When it rained a small rock pool filled with water, it was used for the children's bath.

Today a large number of signs tell the stories of the families that once called Goonoowigal home.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

G is for Goonoowigal

The Goonoowigal (pronounced Gun e wiggle) Wilderness is 10 minutes from the centre of Inverell. The name of the boulder strewn park is Aboriginal for 'plenty rock wallabies'. There are some pretty waterfalls and lots of tracks; Inverell is lucky to have such a wild and beautiful place so close.

Goonoowigal does have an interesting but shameful history, more on that tomorrow.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Riverview Hotel - Smithtown

The unpretentious Riverview Hotel at Smithtown serves award winning food. This is a piece of locally caught Jewfish cooked to perfection.
The Macleay River has had terrible floods in the last few days and I hope the pub wasn't inundated.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Nestle Factory - Smithtown

Manufacturing in country NSW has almost vanished. It's great to see the Nestles Factory at Smithtown on the Macleay River going strong.
Smithtown is a small town and the giant Nesquick and Milo branded silo's dominate the skyline, I think they look great, and who doesn't like Milo!

A historic shot of the vast Nestle industrial complex on the Macleay River.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Trouble @ Stingray Creek Bridge

The wonderfully named Stingray Creek Bridge, which links Laurieton to North Haven has been in the news this week with the Port Macquarie Council deciding to refurbish the narrow aging structure rather than build a new bridge; the locals are not happy!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

The Reflective Gardens - Laurieton

The Reflective Gardens are in the grounds of St Peter the Fisherman, Catholic Church in Laurieton. Pictured is the Lady of the Way Shrine, which is inspired by a lake temple in Italy at the famous Villa Borghese.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Shark in the Sky

'Shark' by Rick Reynolds is a wonderful piece of sculpture on the banks of the Camden Haven River at Laurieton. It also serves as a practical object, the pole being a flood height marker.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Is this the Aussie Retirement Dream?

The Ocean Club Resort is a vast over 50's retirement village that is currently under construction in Bonny Hills on the Mid-North Coast.
There is everything a retiree would need: pool, gym, tennis, clubhouse, security gates etc. The advertising campaign focuses on light physical activity and beachside romance, all in white clothing.
It wouldn't be my cup of tea to live here but I'm sure it will be a big success in one of the retirement hot spots of Australia; the Port Macquarie region.

The display housing is of course cookie cutter in inoffensive pale neutral shades with bright landscaping. It all looks too perfect.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

North Brother Lookout - The Other Side

The really surprising aspect of the North Brother Lookout is the view from the other side. Here is the Camden Haven River forming a delta in the Watson Taylors Lake and South Brother looming in the distance.

There is a spectacular view of Diamond Head and Crowdy Bay along the coast and Pacific Ocean.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Bundarra - Old Cinema and Cafe

It's been a while since a picture show was shown in Bundarra, likewise the old Greek cafe next door hasn't served a toasted sandwich and milkshake in some time.

Bundarra has such a nice collection of old buildings, it is a shame most are empty. Time is just passing away in this once flourishing New England town.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Church Conversion

I haven't been able to find out any information about this simple brick church in Bundarra, perhaps it was Presbyterian?, Methodist? maybe even Calathumpian!

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Bundarra Bridge

The five span iron lattice trussed Bundarra Bridge was opened in 1881 and crosses the Gywdir River. It was designed by N.S.W colonial engineer John A McDonald. 130 years later it is still serving the community and is in very good condition.

Here is a picture from the 1949 flood.

Friday, February 15, 2013

St Mary's Anglican Church - Bundarra

Bundarra must be unique in Australia that both the Anglican & Roman Catholic Churches are both called St Mary's, traditionally this is an Irish RC name for churches.
The foundation stone for St Mary The Virgin was laid by the Bishop Turner of Grafton and Armidale in 1874. It is most surely a design by Horbury Hunt one of Australia's most unique architects. I am of course reminded of his masterpiece in Grafton, Christ Church Cathederal.   Although St Mary's is very much smaller it is beautifully proportioned.
Built in a Gothic Revival style mixed with North American Shingle (Hunt's trademark), it is sad but practical that the shingle roof was replaced with slate in 1924. It is however, very pleasing to see the white lantern above the nave still has them.
It is a strange coincidence that the first incumbent was Rev. Charles Capel Greenway, son of the most well known convict forger and original Colonial architect Francis Greenway.
Of course one of my regrets was that the Chuch was closed and I couldn't get inside, it is apparently very interesting. Oh well, guess that means another trip to this very lovely town in the next few years.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Bundarra - The General Store

Bundarra is a small, dusty town located between Uralla and Inverell on the Thunderbolts Way. It has a population of a few hundred, with a few hundred more living on rural propeties within the district.
The town only has one store left and of course it's run by very friendly folk who sell everything and anything.

"Shop Locally", it's a great expression but I suspect many travel to the larger towns or use the net.

Painted on the wall of the General Store is this famous old shopping expression you no longer see anymore.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Gwydir River - Bundarra

Over the next few posts I would like to show you the small town of Bundarra in New England. Like many towns it is situated on a river. The Gwydir River rises near Uralla and is part of the Barwon catchment, which itself is part of the Murray Darling River, Australia's largest River system.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Williams' Club Hotel - Glen Innes

Williams' Club Hotel in Glen Innes is a true icon of New Engand. A glorious Edwardian boom style hotel built in 1906 and still very much in it's original condition. It is still run by the descendants of Thomas & Bridget Wilson, the builders and original licensee. To read more about the pub in an article on the R M Williams magazine website click here. 

Monday, February 11, 2013

Renovate With Extra Fire & Brimstone?

The quaintly named Devils Pulpit is both the name of a large hill/State Forest and a major project to widen the Pacific Highway between Harwood and Woodburn.

A few days later I was at the Maclean Lookout. It has a very large cement circle with directional arrows to local attractions. I noticed that someone has hacked into the pointer for the Devils Pulpit, bored youth? offended Christian? I guess I will never know, but it does seem quite strange.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Yamba Fair - The Big Whizzer

The Big Whizzer is a classic ride at a fair. This one was very old and rusty! but we survived.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Yamba Fair - Send in the Clowns

Who could resist spending $5 on putting a few ping pong balls down a clown's throat for a cheap prize. For the record I 'won' some green fluffy dice to hang on the revision mirror. They look good but everyone else hates them!!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

The Yamba Family Fair - Part 1

During all of January the small carnival/sideshow alley/rides set up in Ford Park, Yamba. It seems to have become an annual event.
We didn't go unto one of the final nights; not alot of people about and the rain didn't help, however,  fun was to be had.

In the hour I was there I didn't see this woman make one sale, business was slow!
I did like here van, some old fixtures like the cordial machine that spins round and round like a respirator, the lurid Fairy Floss pegged to the ceiling, the choice of bright pink and of course the pre-made Dagwood Dogs. I'd just had tea and the thought of eating this stuff and then going on the Big Whizzer was not a pleasant prospect, so I just bought a red drink(expensive).

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

D is for Driving

A simple adjustment turns a utility truck into a railway line vehicle. These workers are from the NSW Rail Authority workers checking the lines on the Grafton Bridge.

A good solution for a tired child.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

The Chiefs of the Lower Clarence

Did you know that the Lower Clarence has had 14 Scottish Chiefs who have ruled since 1894. Up on the hill in Maclean, there is a memorial with are some attractive poles painted in the tartans of said chiefs.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Yamba's Beaches After the Flood

The massive cleanup is happening on Main and Turners Beaches after the very recent record flood. A Northeasterly gale and cyclonic seas blew/carried a vast amount of timber and rubbish into Wooli Bay at the mouth of the Clarence River..

Main Beach is easily accessible to heavy machinery but I don't know how they will clean Convent Beach and all the rock platforms and points, such as Craigmore Rocks and Lovers. There will be visible memories of the great flood of January 2013 for a long time to come.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Theme Day - Umbrellas

On Friday it was this type of umbrella @ Pippi Beach, Yamba.

On Sunday it was ruined umbrellas watching the Clarence River rise rapidly during squalls from ex Tropical Cyclone Oswald - shot taken on the South Grafton levee.

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