Macquarie 2010 Heritage Festival Events

Heritage Festival Events 2010

Miss Porter’s House

A fund raising event: An afternoon of Champagne, Food and Fashion at Carrington Place (cnr Young and Cowper Streets Carrington) is planned for Saturday afternoon 13 March at 2.00 pm. Cost is $35. The fashion is from Batalin Boutique. Profits will go to the National Trust’s Miss Porter’s House. Bookings can be made by phoning Patti Graham at 4953 9034. NB. Miss Porter’s House is Open every second Sunday of each month, between 1pm – 4pm.

Hopes for Newcastle’s Old Government Domain (1804)

Government House

The James Fletcher Hospital site was Newcastle’s original seat of Government, it combines the first government house and garden, military barracks and parade ground, and original convict coal workings, with asylum and hospital buildings.

Governor Macquarie oversaw many of the improvements to Newcastle’s public infrastructure, which included nearby Christ Church with spire, hospital, gaol, three barracks, guardhouse, watch house and Macquarie Pier across the channel. For further information about the Government Domain Committee the blog is here:


‘The Making of Our Nation’

Friday 26-28 March  10am-6pm.

Heritage Hunter – Newcastle Show Heritage Exhibition.

Sixteen local community groups present a combined heritage exhibition at the annual Newcastle show.  This year the exhibition will feature “The work of Governor Macquarie from 1810 in Newcastle – The   Making of a Nation”. The exhibition will also serve to promote the many events that will follow later as  part of the “Macquarie 2010” celebrations. Price of ticket entry to Newcastle Show. Contact 0419241731.

Saturday 3 – 18 April.

The Making of Our Nation: Art Exhibition.

John Paynter Gallery, The Lockup.

The exhibition will be opened by Mr  Ron Ramsey, Director of the Newcastle Region Art Gallery at 6.30pm, Friday 9 April 2010 at the John Paynter Gallery, Lock-Up, 90 Hunter Street, Newcastle – this will also be the launch of other Heritage  Festival events. See:

Friday 9 – 24 April.

Fort Scratchley Historical Society Inc.

Defending a Nation – Exhibition

Take a journey through photographic displays and memorabilia depicting the role Fort Scratchley has played in the defence of our nation. The historic site known as Fort Scratchley for more than 120 years, has played an important role in protecting the harbour and shipping of Newcastle from real and  perceived threats from world powers Russia, Germany, France and Japan.  The exports of valuable commodities such as coal and steel, crucial in Newcastle’s role of making a nation. Barracks Room, Fort Scratchley. Open daily 1pm-4pm closed Tuesdays. Free entry to exhibition. Further information 49 293066.

Saturday 10 April 3.30 pm.

The Maritime Centre

Governor Macquarie Talk

Enjoy a talk Governor Lachlan Macquarie’s second visit to Newcastle including his trip up the river  to Wallis Plains.  The talk is followed by a walk up the harbour hosted by Governor Macquarie himself with Newcastle Commandant James Wallis and Colonial Surveyor James Meehan in attendance.The walk finishing with a free brew shared with the Governor at a local ‘on port’ ale house. $10 includes fee into the Maritime Centre. Enquiries 49 29 2588

Saturday 10 & Sun 11 April 10 am – 4pm.

Friends of Tomago House.

Links to the Past

An exhibition of Miniature Historic House Interiors by the Hunter Miniatures Group, illustrating the growth of affluence from the time of Governor Lachlan Macquarie 1810-1822. As well guest  speakers Jan Corr from Port Stephens Historical Society will talk at 2pm on Saturday, and Suzanne Martin will speak on Governor Macquarie’s second visit to Newcastle on Sunday at 2pm.The Windeyer family were the original owners of the house and their historic photographs will also be on display. Craft stall, refreshments and other attractions.  Tomago House, 421 Tomago Rd, Tomago $6/$5 concession.  Bookings 49 301471 or 49 574509.

Saturday 10 April  – 10am.

Wallsend Heritage Group Inc.

A Walking Tour of Wallsend.

Meet at the Rotunda (Cnr Tyrrell & Harris Sts) for a walk (about 2 hrs) to explore Wallsend’s heritage.  Free. Bookings 49 559013.

Sunday 11 April   10am – 12pm.

In the Footsteps of Macquarie Walk

Join members of the National Trust & Newcastle University’s Coal River Working Party in a new informative walk from Macquarie Pier to Christ Church, tracing Macquarie’s ambitious building program that helped to transform Newcastle from a convict camp to a township.  The walk will finish at Christchurch Cathedral with a bring-your-own picnic in Cathedral Park overlooking the city.  Meet at Nobbys Surf Club, Nobbys Beach. Cost $10. Bookings essential 0438509139.

Saturday 10 & Sunday 11 April   10am – 4pm.

Miss Porter’s House: The Making of a Home.

Newcastle was originally a secondary penal settlement, but developed into a thriving city.  Miss Porter’s house is  a house museum which reflects the changing lifestyle of the two generations of the Porter family.  The contents  of the house remain as Miss Porter left them.  Visit the house museum which reflects the changing lives of the two generations of the Porter family. $7Adults/$5Conc/Free for NT members. 434 King St Newcastle West.  Enquiries 49 270202

Saturday 17 April   2-5 pm.

Hunter Regional Committee of the National Trust

High Tea with Mrs Macquarie at Monets’

Join us for high tea with Mrs Macquarie at Monet’s the former Military Hospital, 1842 in the grounds of historic James Fletcher Hospital, adjacent the site of the “ Government House “ where Governor Macquarie and his wife Elizabeth, stayed on their visits to Newcastle. Heritage architect John Carr will outline the rich history of this site, and its colonial buildings, of this is an extraordinary site, rich in convict and mental health history over the past 200 years. As well, the inaugural Australian Bonafide History Awards will be presented,  sponsored by the Hunter Heritage Network, recognise the excellence in the   writing of, promotion, or documenting of local and regional history or some other related heritage based projects that use heritage as the catalyst for interpretation and design. $30 (NT members) $35 (non- members) Bookings on 49 275135

Saturday 17 April 7 pm.

Friends of the Regal

The Making of Our Communities – The Role of Local Cinema

Speakers are Frank Embleton, former operator of the Wallsend Empire Cinema, and Gionni di Gravio, Newcastle University archivist. Refreshments will be followed by a short 1950s film. Donation welcome.  Jesmond Neighbourhood Centre, 44 Mordue Pde. Bookings 49 511611.

Saturday 17 April 9 am- 4 pm.

Newcastle Family History Society

Open Day All library resources available, over 5,000 publications, exchange journals with over 100 societies,CDs and microform resources; cemetery records for Hunter Valley and other Australia-wide districts, unique indexing of Newcastle Morning Herald, parish card index (180,000 entries) and more.Come and view the wide range of resources available at the institute.Mechanics’ Institute, 68 Elder St, Lambton.  Free. Enquiries 49 573276

Saturday 24 April 10.30-11.30 am.

Newcastle Family History Society Back to Basics

Introductory talk on beginning family history, resources available locally and in other repositories,breaking down brick walls and organising your material. Mechanics Institute, 68 Elder St, Lambton. Free. Enquiries: 49 578296

Sunday 2 May  2 pm. 

Friends of Grossman House.

Heritage Walk – East Maitland – Southern Precinct

Grossman House

Meet at the car park at Stockade Hill, East Maitland for a historic walking tour of the heritage sites of  the southern precinct. Visit the site of the original Administration Cottage Governor Macquarie stayed in 1818 and 1821, and named the settlement Wallis Plains. Refreshments afterwards at Brough House. $15 NT members  $20 non-members. Bookings 49 33 6452 or 49 332253

Wednesday 21 April 7- 9 pm.

Hunter Regional Committee of the National Trust

Governor Macquarie Forum

‘The Making of Our Nation’: Governor Macquarie and Newcastle.

Newcastle City Hall, Hunter Room.

Governor Macquarie

Three distinguished historians will throw new light on Governor Macquarie, whose bicentenary is being celebrated this year, and who made three visits to Coal River (Newcastle).  Dr Grace Karskens, University of New South Wales, will examine the influence of Macquarie’s wife, Elizabeth, on his building program and his vision for the colony. Mr. Robin Walsh, Macquarie University Library, will reveal Macquarie’s character through the eyes of his Indian manservant, George.  Lisa Slade, Newcastle Region Art Gallery, will discuss the Macquarie Chest, a collector’s chest, almost certainly made in Newcastle in 1818, with painted views of the area and a precious record of the flora and fauna of Coal River in Macquarie’s time.$20 / $15 Conc & NT members. Bookings 49 275135.  Refreshments included.

Hunter Regional Committee of the National Trust blog site:

For all Macquarie 2010 Events please see the official website:

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