Hawkesbury Visitor Information Centre
For further information on Hawkesbury History
Ph: (02) 4560 4620
1300 362 874
Discovered in 1789, The Hawkesbury is one of the earliest colonial settlements in Australia and with many of the area’s original buildings surviving from that era creates a “time capsule” of Australian Colonial History. The atmosphere of the historic towns of Windsor, Richmond and St. Albans, together with the quaint rural settlements of Kurrajong, Bilpin, Lower Portland, Ebenezer, Pitt Town, Colo and Wiseman’s Ferry, contributes to the uniqueness of this truly picturesque area. For locations of Hawkesbury historic and heritage sites, please refer to the Heritage map links at right.
Since 1794, when the first settlers arrived to farm their 30 acres the area has been supplying fresh produce to Sydney. This continues today with many of the descendants from the first settlers still working and living in the district.
Take a walk around Windsor (see Windsor heritage map link above right) and you will see Colonial buildings still being used for their original purposes. The Macquarie Arms Hotel, first licensed in 1815 is still serving drinks to thirsty travellers. If you have a brush with the law, your fate will still be decided at the Windsor Court House designed by Sir Francis Greenway, built in 1822, or you could do your penance at St. Matthews Anglican Church, another Francis Greenway structure built in 1817.
As you walk through narrow streets of Windsor many examples of the 1840's style architecture you will see are still used today as residential homes.
Just a few kilometres away from Windsor is the township of Richmond (see Richmond heritage map link above right), where there are numerous historical buildings. The Richmond School of Arts is still administered as an entertainment venue by the same society established in 1861.
Apart from the historical churches, post office building and courthouse, there are a number of Victorian mansions still in their full glory. These can be seen along March Street, West Market Street and Windsor Street, most are still used as private residences.
Hawkesbury Heritage Walking Tours:
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