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Gunnedah
New South Wales
Gunnedah-NSW-Australia 2005-12-01 IMG 0814.JPG
Gunnedah viewed from Mt Porcupine.
Gunnedah is located in New South Wales
Gunnedah
Population: 7,542 (2006)
Established: 1833
Postcode: 2380
Coordinates: 30°58′S 150°15′E / 30.967°S 150.25°E / -30.967; 150.25Coordinates: 30°58′S 150°15′E / 30.967°S 150.25°E / -30.967; 150.25
Elevation: 264 m (866 ft)
Location:
LGA: Gunnedah Shire Council
County: Pottinger
Monument to miners who have lost their lives, Gunnedah, NSW
Location of Gunnedah in New South Wales (red)

Gunnedah (pronounced /ˈɡʌnədɑː/)[1] is a town and Local government area (see Gunnedah Shire Council) in north-western New South Wales, Australia. 7,542 people lived in the town of Gunnedah in 2006, including 931 indigenous persons (12.3%)[2].

Gunnedah is located on the Oxley and Kamilaroi Highways providing road links to the state capital Sydney at a distance of 475 kilometres (295 mi) and the nearest regional centre Tamworth is 75 kilometres (47 mi). It is also linked to Sydney by rail. The town is served by the daily Countrylink Xplorer service between Sydney and Moree.

The major industry is agriculture, with 80% of the shire area devoted to farming. Gunnedah's primary exports are cotton, coal, beef, lamb and pork, and cereal and oilseed grains. Gunnedah is also home to AgQuip, Australia's largest annual exhibition of agricultural equipment.

Contents

History

Gunnedah and the surrounding areas were originally inhabited by Aborigines who spoke the Kamilaroi (Gamilaraay) language. The area now occupied by the town was settled by Europeans in 1833 or 1834.

Dorothea Mackellar wrote her famous poem My Country (popularly known as I Love a Sunburnt Country) about her family's farm near Gunnedah. This is remembered by the annual Dorothea Mackellar Poetry Awards for school students held in Gunnedah.

Coal was discovered on Black Jack Hill in 1877. By 1891, 6,000 tons of coal had been raised from shafts. The Gunnedah Colliery Company was registered in May 1899 and by 22 June a private railway some 5.7 kilometres (3.5 mi) in length had been completed from the railway station to their mine. In September 1957, the Government Railway took over the working of the line[3].

Geography

Gunnedah Shire is situated 264 metres (870 ft) above sea level on the Liverpool Plains in the Namoi River valley. It is very flat; the tallest hills are 400 to 500 metres (1,300 to 1,600 ft) above sea level. The climate is hot in summer, mild in winter and dry, although rainstorms in catchment areas occasionally cause flooding of the Namoi River. Major floods cut transport links to the town, briefly isolating it from the outside world.

The Gunnedah area is noted for its abundance of native wildlife, including kangaroos, echidnas and koalas. Koalas can often be found in trees within the town, as well as in the surrounding countryside with the help of signs placed by the local tourist centre.

Media

Local media include the Namoi Valley Independent newspaper and the radio stations 2MO and 2GGG. 2MO claims to be the first station established in Australia outside the capital cities.

Railway station

Gunnedah railway station is situated on the Mungindi (or North West) railway line, 475 kilometres (295 mi) from Sydney.[4] The station, opened in 1879, consists of a substantial station building on a single side platform, a passing loop and small goods yard. Currently a single daily Xplorer diesel railmotor operating between Sydney and Moree serves the station.[5]

Notable Gunnedahians

See also

References

External links

Preceding station   CountryLink   Following station
towards Moree
CountryLink North Western
towards Sydney
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