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Cootamundra
New South Wales
Cootamundra Building A 004.jpg
The CBC bank building and post office on Wallendoon St
Population: 5579
Established: 1861
Postcode: 2590
Elevation: 318 m (1,043 ft)
Location:
LGA: Gundagai Council
County: Harden
State District: Cootamundra
Federal Division: Hume
Mean Max Temp Mean Min Temp Annual Rainfall
22.3 °C
72 °F
8.4 °C
47 °F
626.1 mm
24.6 in

Cootamundra is a town in the South West Slopes region of New South Wales, Australia and within the Riverina. It is within the Gundagai Council. At the 2011 census, Cootamundra had a population of 5,579. It is located on the Olympic Highway at the point where it crosses the Muttama Creek, between Junee and Cowra. Although it is bypassed by the Hume Highway, its railway station is on the Main Southern line, part of the Melbourne-to-Sydney line.

Cootamundra is the birthplace of Sir Donald Bradman AC, an Australian cricketer universally regarded as the greatest batsman of all time. The town features the Sir Donald Bradman Birthplace Museum, a fully restored visitors' site, the home where "The Don" was born, featuring cricketing memorabilia and artifacts.

Cootamundra is the home of the Cootamundra wattle. Every year there is a large 'Wattle Time' Festival held at the time the wattle starts to bloom, with an art show and festivities.

History

Cootamundra Bradman's Birthplace Museum 003
Birthplace of Sir Donald Bradman

The earliest people to live in the area where present day Cootamundra exists are considered to be the tribe of Wiradjuri, with the name probably deriving from their word guudhamang for "turtle".

Cootamundra Parker Street 001
Parker St, the main street of Cootamundra

Cootamundra was incorporated as a township on 9 August 1861, and the first settlers bought their lots in early 1862. Like many other towns in the Riverina, it was originally populated by those attracted by the gold rush of the 1860s, but became a quiet yet prosperous agricultural community after the local deposits were exhausted.

The town's rugby league team competed in the Maher Cup.

Timeline

  • 1847 - Cootamundra Run, a large stock run, is the first colonist settlement in the area.
  • 1861 - The site of Cootamundry is published in the NSW Government Gazette
  • 1862 - Gold mining commences at the nearby Muttama Reef mine.
  • 1864 - The first church (Anglican) and post office are established.
  • 1875 - The first school in the district opens
  • 1877 - Cootamundra's railway connection opens on 1 November.
  • 1884 - Cootamundra is first gazetted as a municipality
  • 1896 - Cootamundra Cycling Club. It is probably the oldest continual club in NSW, although as was the case with most clubs it went into recess during the war years.
  • 1908 - Donald Bradman (later Sir Donald Bradman) is born in Cootamundra.
  • 1911 to 1968 - Cootamundra Domestic Training Home for Aboriginal Girls forcibly taken from their families
  • 1942 - On 3 December, the corvette HMAS Cootamundra, named for the town, is launched.
  • 1952 - Name of Cootamundry officially changed to Cootamundra
  • 1955 - The first Cootamundra Annual Classic cycling handicap race, one of the oldest open races in NSW.
  • 1956 - Cootamundra's rugby league football club's Bill Marsh is first selected to play for the Australian national team.
  • 1960 - Cootamundra's Australian Football club is established.
  • 1982 - In November 1982, the aviation company Masling Industries was formed. This was restructured in June 1993 after the unfortunate death of the owner.
  • 1986 - Popular Australian singer/songwriter/bush poet John R Williamson released his song 'Cootamundra Wattle'.
  • 2015 - Australian youth radio station Triple jjj featured the 'Cootamundra bonus weather rap'
  • 2000 - The first annual beach volleyball competition begins. Truckloads of sand are trucked into the main street for Coota Beach (play on words for Kuta Beach in Bali, Indonesia).
  • Australian rugby league Kangaroos player Lee Ryde grew up representing the Group 9 Cootamundra Bulldogs local team.
  • 2015 - Luke Barry Donnellan becomes the first Syrian national to win the prestigious Best Dressed award at the annual Cootamundra Cup.

In popular culture

  • Leonard Hubbard recorded the song "Cootamundra" in 1924.

Transport

Cootamundra Railway Station from Footbridge
Cootamundra railway station

Cootamundra railway station is located on the Main Southern railway line, with passengers served in each direction by twice daily NSW TrainLink XPT railway services between Sydney and Melbourne, and the weekly Xplorer railway services to Griffith. Cootamundra is hub for NSW Trainlink cross country coach services to Orange. Regional Rail Logistics operates a containerised freight service from Junee to Sydney stopping in the town, with interstate freight trains also passing through.

Cootamundra NSW Australia 20070223
Aerial view of Cootamundra

Military History

During World War 2, Cootamundra was the location of RAAF No.3 Inland Aircraft Fuel Depot (IAFD), completed in 1942 and closed on 14 June 1944. It was located in an area of land near the intersection of Olympic Highway and Thompson Street. Usually consisting of 4 tanks, 31 fuel depots were built across Australia for the storage and supply of aircraft fuel for the RAAF and the US Army Air Forces at a total cost of £900,000 ($1,800,000).

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