Bathurst : Toposcope

After visiting the Big Pineapple we drove the last few kilometers to Bathurst.  But the GPS we were using kept taking us on small, muddy dirt roads.  It felt like we were driving in circles.  We found a farmer along the way and he helped us in the right direction.
We drove through Bathurts to the Agricultural Museum.  It was unfortunately already closed. We turned back and went to the nest sight on our list: The Toposcope.  We had a small map of the area but it did not show street names and we just drove in what we hoped was the right direction.  We found found it on a hill outside of the town.
I read about the Bathurst toposcope on our hotel’s website but when my husband asked me I still was not sure.  So with the help of wikipedia we learned that it is a marker erected on hill or high places to indicate directions.

This Toposcope marks the spot where the 1820 British Settlers locations allotments were made.  The plaques shows detail with the names of groups, the locations and the ships they came with.  The original brass plaques were stolen and they were replaced with fiberglass.  These replacement plaques have been vandalized and only a few still remain. 

The plaque by the Historical monuments Commission reads:
"Close to this site in 1820 Colonel Jacob Cuyler made his camp while supervising the placing of the settlers on their locations. While camped here at the same time Sir Rufane Donkin chose the site for the administrative centre to be named Bathurst. The beacon was erected by Captain W. Bailey as an observing station during his survey of the Eastern Districts, 1855 - 1859."

The Toposcope and Bailey’s Beacon were declared national heritage sites in 1968.


  1. Wow, it must have been quite moving to be in a place like that, relatively unchanged as it must be since the 1820 settlers were there.

    GPSs are so funny - in England they tend to take you down the narrowest roads that honestly haven't been widened or upgraded since medieval times. We've had a couple of really scary experiences!


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