Bathurst Showgrounds Added To State Heritage Register

Bathurst Showground, one of the earliest showgrounds established in NSW, has been listed on the State Heritage Register.

Heritage Minister Mark Speakman said the listing of the Bathurst Showground was an acknowledgment of its importance to the history of NSW.

“From the time of the establishment of the NSW colony, agriculture played a big part in lives of our pioneers and local agricultural shows were an important part of the fabric of early life,” he said.

“Bathurst began holding local shows in 1863. These early shows often were held in town parks or on farmland owned by local farmers.

“But it wasn’t until 1877 that the current showground was built, when the town received a grant of Crown Land to establish a more permanent showground.”

The first show at the new showground was held in 1878.

Member for Bathurst Paul Toole said the shows provided an opportunity for the Community to celebrate an exposition of rural life, the agricultural, horticultural and pastoral industries, and to showcase livestock, food, wine, arts and craft and the best of the region.

“The suite of handsome 19th century show buildings was constructed in the grounds and these original buildings were added to through the 20th century. The 19th and 20th century buildings are still in use to this day,” he said.

Mr Speakman said these architect-designed show buildings were carefully laid out around a central arena, and set in an equally carefully planted landscape setting. The aesthetic qualities of the Bathurst showground make it an outstanding illustration of an 'ideal' regional showground in NSW.

State heritage listing provides protection for Bathurst Showground under the NSW Heritage Act 1977 for future generations, and that any major works item would be subject to decisions or advice from the Heritage Council of NSW.

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