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Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Strathalbyn South Australia

A pretty country town

Strathalbyn is about an hour's drive from Adelaide and is one of South Australia's oldest towns. It was established in 1839, Adelaide was proclaimed on the 27th of December 1836 so basically the town began just 2 years after European settlement in S.A. The town was established as a farming town and it remains that to this day, the farmers were fairly prosperous and the town has some quite substantial historic buildings.

The River Angas flows through the town and there's a nice park around the river. I have some nostalgia to the park as it's the location where we used to stop when going on school camp nearby.

The park is actually called the Soldiers' Memorial Gardens, the war memorial is at one end of the park, opposite the church, whose tower can just be seen.

Like many prosperous towns, the park has a rotunda (or bandstand) where a band would play for local picnics and celebrations. This one has been restored and is now a nice resting place to enjoy the gardens.

Along side the part of the park where the main street borders the park, there is this historic horse trough. It was placed here in 1913 (when the main form of transportation was still horses!), the local Women's Temperance Union raised money for the trough. I liked the idea of strong women, doing good deeds and there still stands a monument to their work!

As with most well to do country towns, their most substantial buildings (besides the pubs!) were the banks. This one is still being used as a bank today.

And here's one of the pubs, the Victoria Hotel, named as many things were in the 19th century in Australia, after Queen Victoria. Proudly advertising its heritage, now 151 years old.

Strathalbyn hosts an antique and collectables fair in August, it has this interesting store that's a more permanent establishment for collectables.

The town has some pretty old stone cottages, which people have restored, driving through on the main road to the south coast I took pictures of a few.


Stone was the main building material for houses in South Australia as there was very little wood, stone also helped keep the houses cooler in the hot summer. The houses were built to resist the heat, with small windows and verandahs that generally went around the houses and helped keep the sun off the walls.



Strathalbyn is close enough to Adelaide that it's a pleasant drive in the country, the large park is popular for picnics and it's an easy town to stroll around. There's also a small museum of the local area, now housed in what had been the old police station.


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