Hawkesbury Valley Walking Tours - Richmond
The Westward Walk
From points 1 - 19, this walk covers the western part of Richmond and will take approximately one hour to complete
The Eastward Walk
From points 20 - 30, this walk covers the eastern part of Richmond and will take approximately 75 minutes to complete.
1. The Post Office
Our walk begins in the main street of Richmond on the Post office steps. There was some form of postal service to Richmond from 1829, with an official Post Office being established in 1844. The ground floor of the present building was built in 1875 and the first floor added about 188. The old coach house and stables at the rear have been updated.
Walk past the Courthouse to West Market Street and turn left. Here, the first group of buildings will be found. On the right is the prominent
2. St Andrews Uniting Church
Built and paid for as a Presbyterian Church in 1845 by George Bowman, it was handed over to the congregation as a gift. The plaque on the porch bears testament to Bowmans philanthropic act. The tower with its bell and the clock were added in 1877 and 1878 respectively, and were also a gift from Bowman. The clock which had been ordered from London was however, erected after Bowmans death in 1878.
George Bowman was three years old when he arrived in the colony in 1798 with his parents John and Honor Bowman. The Bowmans were natives of Scotland. George married Eliza Sophia Pearce and in 1851 was elected to the NSW Legislative Council for Northumberland and Hunter. Bowman was actively connected with the welfare of Richmond, being founding President of the Arts Society, and in 1872, mayor of the newly established Richmond Municipal Council. He helped establish schools at Richmond and North Richmond and contributed in numerous ways to the church in the area.
In front of the church, a memorial has been erected to Dr Andrew Cameron, the ministers brother who was a medical doctor. Arriving in the colony in 1868, Andrew Cameron set up a practice at Richmond and married Mary Ann Bowman, a younger daughter of George Bowman.
George Bowman, Andrew Cameron and James Cameron (Presbyterian Minister of Richmond) are all buried in the Presbyterian cemetery in Jersey Street. Almost next door and to the right behind the splendid plane tree is...
3. Richmond Community Nursing Home
Built from rendered sandstone in 1881 for the Rev Dr James Cameron. He died here in 1905 and the house was purchased by George Woodhill.
The house has been modified extensively and has been used as a hospital for most of this century.
Directly opposite on the other side of West Market Street you will find...
4. Masonic Lodge
This was previously the Presbyterian School. The Rev James Cameron was secretary of the Board of Local Patrons which ran the school. They requested the Board of National Education to supervise the local school, pay the schoolmasters salary and help with the books for 60 children. It became a National School in July 1860, but was purchased from the Department of Education for the Masonic Lodge in 1929.
Next door, on the corner of March Street is the old...
5.School of Arts
On 27 August 1866 the building which occupied what is now the floor area of the main hall was opened by Henry Parkes. It was built by the people of Richmond with generous assistance from George Bowman. It has operated continuously as a public hall, and the minute books for the 120 years have been preserved. These give and interesting insight into the lives of the people of Richmond over the years. Richmond Municipal Council, incorporated in 1872, met here until it purchased its own building in 1913.
Turn left into March Street. O your right, the doctors surgery was once...
6. Price's House
The building stands today largely unaltered. William Price arrived in the colony as a convict in 1816. He purchased as acre of ground from William Bowman and built the house in 1827
Turn around and walk back along March Street, for a view of the Blue Mountains. Further along March Street on the left is the distinctive...
Said to have been built in the 1830's, the block was owned by Mr Spencer who is thought to be the son of the first fleeter Thomas Spencer who dies in 1821.
Almost opposite Rutherglen is...
8. Shaddick Baker and Paul
This is an interesting collection of buildings. Notice the fine example of iron lacework and the bull-nose verandah on the older building. And see how well the newer buildings around have been designed to integrate with the old.
The original building was built around 1868, and occupied by the Woods family. New additions were built in the early 1980's. The holly tree at the front is at least seventy years old.
Continue walking to the traffic lights and turn right. You have now entered Bosworth Street. Half way along the block on the right is...
9. Number 24 Bosworth Street
An 1840s house which was recently restored. While the rear verandah is original, the front verandah has been replaced to enhance the buildings attractiveness.
Cross Bosworth Street to...
10. The Hawkesbury Community Youth Support Group
This old timber building was used by the RAAF for many years as a meeting house. The drive to the side and garages in the rear used to house tanks.
Continue to the corner where Bosworth Street meets Windsor Street. On the south-east corner is the...
11. Site of the Black Horse Inn
Although virtually nothing remains of the inn (only its roof line is visible from the street), it was once one of the most famous in the area. The licence was first issued in February 1819 to Paul Randall to keep an inn at his dwelling and for many years the sign of the black horse in full gallop announced its services. This sign is now on exhibition in the Hawkesbury Historical Society's Museum at Windsor. In the early days of Richmond, the Black horse stood in the centre of the town and was its social focal point. It is reported that the young men help horse races down the main street with the inn as the finishing post. It also achieved great fame as a "Honeymoon Hotel". It closed n 1927 when the licence was transferred to the Kurrajong Heights Hotel.
Turn into Windsor Street towards the mountains. Notice how the streetscape changes at this point. Behind you is the commercial section of Richmond, in from is the residential section. A short distance along on the right are two cottages of interest. The first is at...
12. Number 315 Windsor Street
"The Cottage" now Richmond Restaurant, was built in 1865 by the Cornwell family. Next door is..
13. Number 317 Windsor Street
"Eltham: appears to be older than "The Cottage" and is dated thus by the National Trust.
On the opposite side of the road you will find...
14. Bowman Cottage
The cottage was built by the free settler and farmer, James Blackman, in the period 1815 - 17, Blackman maintained a 100acre farm, but was forced to sell off 40 acres as the farm was not sufficiently prosperous. The building was acquired by George Bowman after Blackman left the district in 1820 to settle in the Mudgee area. When Bowman bought it he obtained a liquor licence under the sign of the Royal Arrow. He lived here until his death in 1878.
Slate has replaces the original shingles and the three dormer windows have been added. The walls in the main section of the house are brick, set between timber uprights and overlaid with weatherboard.
Restoration, undertaken by the Department of Public Works, began in 1985 and was completed in 1988. The cottage today is occupied by the National Parks and Wildlife Service and Bowman Enterprises, who are employers of disabled people. The Bowan Cottage tea rooms are open to the public.
Continue along Windsor Street. As you cross Chapel Street, look to the left along the avenue of plane trees, which in summer meet over the road to provide a shady avenue. Toward the end of Windsor Street is...
15. St Peters Church of England
Consecrated by Bishop Broughton in 1841, the church was designed by Francis Clarke, a prominent architect of his time whose only surviving works are St Peters and St Mary Magdalene at St Marys. Lighting for the evening services was by candle until the introduction of kerosene in 1866. Electricity became available in November 1918.
The plain glass windows were replaced by coloured glass in 1874. Tom commemorate the 50th anniversary of consecration, the stained glass windows in the east were presented by Joseph Onus. A small obelisk in the churchyard is made from bricks f the original building which was a combined church/schoolroom. It was erected under the direction of Governor Macquarie. It was his policy that such buildings should be set up in all the major towns that he established. The original building was built by William Cox who was contracted to build many famous buildings in Hawkesbury (such as the Windsor Courthouse and the Rectory to St Matthews Church of England also in Windsor) as well as the first road over the Blue Mountains in 1814.
The rectory was built in 1847 and is a replica of a vicarage occupied by Bishop Broughton in England.
Directly opposite is an expansive panorama of the Blue Mountains, with Pughs Lagoon in the foreground. Cross the road to take full advantage of the view. Here you will also find...
16. St Peters Cemetery
This burial ground was laid out in January 1811 - together with the site for the church and schoolhouse - under Governor Macquaries direction. The cemetery contains graves of many well known pioneers, including John and Honour Bowman (George Bowmans parents), Paul Randall (the original proprietor of the Black Horse Inn) famous midwife Margaret Catchpole, William Cox Senior of "Hobartville" and Joseph Onus Junior (who was mayor from 1873 to 1875).
Turn left out of the cemetery gates, walk back along Windsor Street as far as Chapel Street and turn left. On the corner of Chapel and Francis Streets is the beautifully restored...
Built by Onus in the 1830's - either by Joseph Senior before his death in 1835 or shortly afterwards by Joseph Junior. Joseph Onus (1780 - 1835) arrived as a convict in 1803, the first of a family that was to become prominent in Richmond throughout that century.
Josieville was the farmhouse of the Onus property of the same name. In the 1870's Joseph Jnr added the upper story. Now delightfully restored, it is a reminder of a gracious past.
Turn right into Francis Street. On the left side, well hidden by the trees and a long driveway, you can capture glimpses of...
18. Clear Oaks
Owned by the Onus family, it is often referred to as Onus or Moxey's Farm. This is one of the oldest buildings in Richmond, thought to have been built before 1819. During the Victorian era, dances used to be held in the barn which stood to the west of the property. The present barn, in front of the house to the east, was rebuilt after being transported from Windsor. Click here for a brief history of the original owners of Clear Oaks.
Beyond Bosworth Street on the high side of the street are several...
19. Victorian Houses
Although there is little of historical significance with these buildings, they do provide an interesting contract to the newer houses which surround them.
Turn right into West Market Street and you will be back at the Post Office. You may like to continue walking and discover the eastern half of Richmond. Continue walking along Windsor Street. Just past the Post Office is...
20. Richmond Park
Today the area is a playing field, but it was once the market square and was the focal point for the people of Richmond. At one stage the park was bisected by the Richmond Kurrajong Railway. Today the rail link from Sydney finishes at Richmond and the park is protected under the Heritage Act.
At the traffic lights on the corner of East Market Street is...
21. The Royal Hotel
This hotel holds the longest continuous licence in Richmond, having first been granted to William Reid in 1865.
The grandeur of The Riyal increased in the 1880's with extensions which included a large cellar and "plunge and shower baths". Its balcony was supported by columns until the front of the hotel was enclosed in 1957.
Cross over East Market Street and on the left is the elegant...
Built around 1841 for George Bowmans younger brother William who had been born in the colony in 1799. It remains a grand old building with much appeal for the visitor. It originally stood on five acres and in earlier days was renowned for its magnificent gardens.
William stood successfully for election to the Legislative Assembly in 1843. Following Williams death in 1847, the house was let to Elizabeth Bowman, his wife, for use during her lifetime and them to her daughter Ann Cadell who lived at Mudgee. Bowmans widow lived in the house until her death in 1885 when it came into the possession of James Cameron who was married to Bowmans niece.
Students from Hawkesbury Agricultural College used Toxana from 1891 as a residence. However in 1896 the college opened up its own residential complex and the building was let as flats.
The building was restored in 1978 by Windsor Council and the Department of Environment and Planning. The cellar is today utilised by the Macquarie Towns Arts Society as an art gallery.
Continue walking along Windsor Street and turn left into Toxana Street. At the end, turn right into Francis Street. At the crest on the left is...
23. Benson House
This house was built in the early 1840's by the Benson family who were shipwrights. The top storey was added around 1900. The bottom storey and the servants quarters at the back connected by a covered causeway, are original. The present owners are only the fourth in the last 150 years.
The house directly opposite at number 60 Francis Street was built by Bensons daughter.
Continue along Francis Street and then left into Jersey Street. Overlooking the lowlands to the north of Richmond is the...
24. Presbyterian Cemetery
This has been the burial place for many of the towns folk of Richmond since the latter half of the nineteenth century. Burials date from the 1860's and include such family names associated with the growth of Richmond as Bowman, Cameron, Miles, Woodhill, Douglas, Ezzy, Charley, Roberts and Stewart.
The Rev James Cameron is buried here with his wife and son. Dr Andrew Cameron is buried with his wife Mary Ann. George Bowman, his wife and some of his family - including his sons from "Muswell Brook" - are in the family vault. Another Richmond identity, Philip Charley, is also buried here. Philip made a fortune at Broken Hill and in 1891 purchased "Belmont" at Richmond Hill, building a palatial sandstone home and establishing a famous stud farm.
Retrace your steps back to Frances Street. Cross over and continue to the corner of Windsor Street. Here you will find the...
25. Catholic Church
The original St Monica's church was opened by Father Therry, representing the Archbishop, on May 4 1859. Thou foundation stone had been laid in 1854. The transepts were added in 1897 and confessionals added in 1954. A new church was built in 1982.
At the corner. look to the left along the avenue of plane trees. If you were to continue across Windsor Street for half a kilometre you would find the Hawkesbury campus of the University of Western Sydney, once known as the Agricultural College. The campus welcomes visitors. You may like to drive there and then walk around, taking in the agricultural setting of the campus.
Now, turn right into Windsor Street. Heading back toward the commercial heart of Richmond, on your left, the first cottage past the shop is one that is typical of many in the district. This one was...
26. The Wheelwrights Shop
Bob Eggleton who by 1868 was living in this house with his wife Elizabeth and family of one children, was one of Richmond's wheelwrights.
The wheelwright was a skilful tradesman, making and servicing wheels from timber which he cut with an axe, shaped with and adze and finished with a spoke shave. The tyre was forged from iron into a circle the same circumference as the wheel and was then heated. The metal tyre was fitted over the wheel rim and then both were plunged into water. The sudden rapid cooling shrank the metal and caused it to tighten on the wooden rim.
Robert Eggleton began his apprenticeship around 1841 when he was a boy of about fourteen. At this Windsor Street address, Robert lived and carried on a business as both wheelwright and blacksmith until the 1900's when he went to live with his son Edward at Pitt Town. On his death in 1910, after what the local paper described as a "largely attended funeral" Robert Eggleton was buried in Richmond cemetery opposite St Peters Church.
At number 89 Windsor Street is...
27. The Manse
The foundation stone of the Presbyterian manse was laid by Miss Jessie Cameron, eldest daughter of Rev. Cameron, on July 4 1892. Underneath, sealed in a bottle were details of the Presbyterian churches and schools in the district. Many of thus listed as elders are buried in the Presbyterian Cemetery which you visited earlier on this walk.
Part way along the school grounds is a set of decorative gates, which today seem out of character with the school behind. These are the...
28. Kamilaroi Gates
These gates are all that remain of large two-storey house built in 1893 by the Richards family, one of the wealthiest in the district. Benjamin Richards was the founder of Riverstone Meat Works. In 1926 the land and house were sold to the Department of Education and from 1928, until the house was demolished in 1956, it was used as a District Rural School. The name and date of the property are carved on the post and the wrought iron gates have Benjamin Richards initials on them.
Further down Windsor Street at the corner of Paget Street, and distinguished by its red ochre paint, is...
29. Andrew Towns House
Built by Andrew Town about 1850. It was from here that horse races were held down Windsor Street to the sign of the Black Horse - a distance of about 750 metres.
Andrew Town was born in Richmond in 1840 and married Emma Onus in 1863. For years, Andrew Town occupied the judges boxes at Randwick for the Australian Jockey Club and had been judge for meetings of the Sydney Turf Club, The Hawkesbury Race Club, The Warwick Farm Race Club and the Canterbury Park Race Club.
Andrew Town became the largest breeder of pedigreed stock in the world during the 1880's and at the rear of his house were extensive stables. The house has been extensively rebuilt - only the two-storey centre section remains of the original building.
Town also bought "Hobartville" in 1877 and used it for his yearling sales. But he continued to use this house and entertained lavishly there in the 1880's. Town left the district in 1889 when a financial depression caused him to lose his properties. He died in 1890.
On the corner opposite is...
30. 126 Windsor Street
"Heritage Cottage" was built around 1850. There is an addition to the house at the rear, which as used as a coffee shop. Three front rooms - a dining room. living room and children's bedroom - recreate life in the 1850's.
Continue along Windsor Street, recross East Market Street and the Post Office will be visible adjacent to Richmond Park. The walking tour ends here, having covered points of historic interest in Richmond. We hope you have enjoyed your time here and that you will take time to explore the neighbouring town of Windsor.