Friday, December 19, 2008

Visit to Hill End, goldmining (ghost) town in NSW

Well here we are in lovely Hill End. I'm afraid it is a rather cold winter's day, so I hope everyone brought plenty of warm clothes. If I remember rightly, Old Jim's All Nations Hotel was just opposite this building on the left - nothing there today but a plaque to say it was there! That goes for a lot of the old buildings - the population today is 100, in Jim's day it was 8,000! His pub was only one of many, and there were shops galore. The Main Street was a muddy quagmire in winter, so mind how you walk! The picture on the right was a few kilometres out of town and was something to do with the way they got the gold out of the ore I think - it was all a Cornish invention, anyway. The huge stone wells pictured are part of the same complex - they are the roasting pits, which they used to soften the quartz before crushing. Someone more knowledgeable than me may post a proper explanation if we're lucky! If you go to you'll get a very comprehensive background to Hill End, and to focus on the Cornish in Hill End, read this . The Cornish Association of NSW had an excellent weekend there in 2005, and this was the speech given by the keynote speaker of the evening, Brian Hodge. The ride up was a bit bumpy wasn't it, but it was sure better than it was in Old Jim's day!

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