Gooloogong

About Gooloogong

Gooloogong is a small town in Central Western New South Wales with a population of approximately 300. It is located 340km west of Sydney via Bathurst, Blayney and Canowindra. It lies on the Lachlan Valley Way between Cowra and Forbes and is within the Cowra Shire, though it borders on both Forbes and Cabonne.

Gooloogong is a Wiradjuri word of unknown meaning; the town found it's name from the cattle property 'Gool-a-gong' established in the district in the 1820's by the personal physician of Governor Macquarie, Dr William Redfern.

The town is steeped in history, most notably Croote Cottage, a pise (rammed earth) walled building built in 1827 by a gang of convicts. The cottage is one of the earliest buildings west of the Blue Mountains that is still standing. It has been restored to its original condition complete with authentic period furniture.

The first school opened in 1869 and is still open to this day, and in 1880 St Malachy's Catholic Church was completed and holding mass for the local Catholic community. The original church now lies in ruin after the construction of a larger church in 1953.

In 1904 the distinctive Holman Bridge, a DeBurgh timber truss bridge, was completed across the Lachlan River. In 1998 it was one of only 10 surviving DeBurgh trusses in NSW of the 20 built. The bridge was in use until 2015 and was demolished in 2016 after being deemed dangerous and unusable.

In 1922 the North Goolagong siding was opened with the railway running from Cowra to Eugowra. In 1924 a 20 tonne weighbridge and 15 tonne crane were installed at the railway siding. The railway closed down and was dismantled in 1979.

In 1924 the town changed its name from Goolagong to Gooloogong. The previous spelling can still be found on buildings in the area, including the Gooloogong Hotel.

In 1927 Hugh Heavener built the towns distinctive Log Cabin Hall. It was built in preparation for an influx of workers when a planned Lachlan River Project eventuated, however the project was relocated to Jemalong after the war. After the death of Hugh Heavener, the hall was donated to the community and is now used for many events, such as the Log Cabin Markets and annual Esky Ball.


Gooloogong Hotel

About the Gooloogong Hotel

The original building of the Gooloogong Hotel was built in 1911 by Hugh Heavener and, after many extensions and alterations, opened in 1937 as the 'Commercial Hotel' with Licensees Mr and Mrs T Morrow. After opening, local newspaper 'The Lachlan Leader' reported -

'Extensive alterations and additions have been completed, at considerable cost. Modern throughout, with every facility that makes for the comfort of patrons. It is replete with sewerage, electric light, hot and cold water, 17 well-appointed bedrooms, three comfortable lounges and a spacious balcony.'

'Mr and Mrs T Morrow entertained at the Commercial Hotel Goolagong, yesterday afternoon, when the enlarged premises were informally opened. Mr Morrow looked after his own department generously, up to 50 men being in the bar at times, while about 70 ladies were the guests of Mrs Morrow. The ladies were served afternoon tea in the dining room and later adjourned to the upstairs lounge.Mrs R D Ferguson sang "Here's Love and Laughter" and "I Love You Truly", with Mrs Morrow, who is noted for her playing at the piano. Miss Elva Marsh rendered "Mother Machree", and Miss Jessie Wright played popular melodies. Later the ladies were shown over the premises by the hostess, and each guest was presented with a photograph of the Hotel as a souvenir.'

'Spacious hotel balcony overlooking the Lachlan River flats, and providing a fine view of the golf links, tennis courts and flower gardens, the balcony of the Commercial Hotel, Goolagong lends itself ideally for parties and similar gatherings. Measuring 90 feet by 13 feet, the balcony is brilliantly lit by night and has a distinctive color scheme.'

During the war, the Hotel was home to the Land Army Girls who were sent to help on the local farms, growing vegetable to feed the troops.

 

The bar of the Gooloogong Hotel is decorated with a vast array of interesting items, from vintage saws and rabbit traps to boomerangs and didgeridoos. All items are on loan from local residents.