Condobolin & Parkes
Click on an image to see a larger version
Having finished the telescope inspection, it was time to return
to Parkes and check in to the motel for this night. After that,
time to explore the area. Looking over the list of area attractions
provided by the motel, I decided to go towards Condobolin, in part
to see the Japanese Garden to commemorate the internment camp of
World War II. Of course, the camp and garden are in COWRA, so
naturally I didn't find them!
Condobolin was established as a Lachlan River crossing stopover for drovers,
the town was gazetted in 1859. It remained a pastoral township although
it benefited from copper and gold mining in the late 1800s.
Wheat, sheep and cattle farming still predominate.
Mount Tilga (8 km to the north) is said to be the geographical centre of NSW.
Population is about 3500, and it's located 99 km west of Parkes,
463 west of Sydney.
In the spirit of drovers crossing the river, this was the first
place I stopped. It's not often one sees a sign like this.
Though it's more likley related to the horse facilities across
the river from the town than the drovers mentioned above.
The view upstream along the Lachlan River from the bridge. The
city park is on the left bank (the covered area is just visible
among the trees) and the showgrounds and stables are on the right.
Looking east along the main street. It being a Sunday afternoon,
there was not much activity around.
Moving along the street to the east is the Fire Station. Adjacent
to that is the Town Hall or Shire Offices - it wasn't clear exactly
The Post Office. I'm not sure the section with the clock is original;
it doesn't seem to fit the style of the rest of the building.
The Court House - another building of some status.
This former hotel was built in 1875. It is now a community centre
featuring arts and crafts and historical displays.
Unlike Forbes, Parkes seem to have more of a business/industrial
town feel to it. I found few historical buildings of any interest, and the
shopping/main street was quite ordinary. Even the Post Office was
a new building!
The town was originally known as Currajong from the type of trees
growing in the area. It was renamed "Parkes" in 1873 when
visited the town as Premier of NSW. Parkes was a major
player in state politics, and pushed forcefully for the federation
of the states, especially in the late 1880s and until his death in 1896.
Memorial Hill is the highest point in town, and this monument is
dedicated to those from the area who lost their lives during war.
Looking south from the hill shows rather lush countryside.
And looking north east shows how close farming comes to the edge of town.
The hill in the middle had been recenly ploughed.
While taking some photos near a points of interest display, this
magpie landed less than 50 cm away; I suspect it was looking for
food! I disappointed it on that score, but at least I have this
photo. Though perhaps I should have fed it as its "fee" :)
The Parkes Court House. Not as impressive as that in Forbes, or
even Condobolin. It dates from 1895.
This statue of Henry Parkes is located on the main shopping street.
This photo indicates that he is welcoming "Big W", which he probably
would have done.
The full statue of Henry Parkes, sculpted by Terrance Plowright.
This tribute to the father of federation was unveiled by
Her Excellency Professor Marie Bashir AC CVO,
Governor of New South Wales on the 12th of May 2008 as part
of Parkes 125th year of local government celebrations.