Richmond, New South Wales
Richmond is a small town of approximately 5,000, located to the north-west of Sydney. Due to the continuing expansion of Sydney, Richmond is now considered an outer suburb.
A Brief History
Originally the home of the native Darug people, British settlers arrived in 1789, who originally named the area ‘Richmond Hill’ in honour of Charles Lennox, the third Duke of Richmond, Master General of Ordnance in the Pitt administration in Great Britain.
The local area was the third area to have European settlement in Australia after Sydney and Parramatta. The first 22 European settlers came to the area in 1794 to farm a total of 30 acres (12 ha) in what is now Pitt Town Bottoms. They needed good farming land to help overcome the desperate need for food in the new colony. By 1799 this region was producing about half the grain produced in the colony of Australia.
The Battle of Richmond Hill took place in May and June 1795 between the Darug people and the European settlers. It is perhaps the first time that the colonial authorities sent in the troopers and expressly stated their intent to ‘destroy’ the whole local Aboriginal population of an area.
Around 1811, Macquarie established the five Macquarie Towns in the area: Windsor, Richmond, Castlereagh, Wilberforce and Pitt Town.
RAAF Base Richmond is a Royal Australian Air Force base at Richmond which was established in 1923. The air base is currently the home to the RAAF’s transport squadrons. During the Vietnam War, logistic support and medical evacuations were supplied by the C-130 Hercules aircraft from RAAF Richmond.
Richmond is surrounded by the 329km2 Richmond Woodlands Important Bird Area, identified as such by BirdLife International because of the importance of the patches of remnant eucalypt woodland it contains for endangered Regent Honeyeaters and Swift Parrots.
One of the early settlers, James Blackman, built Bowman Cottage from brick nog, a common construction technique in the colony, using borrowed money. The house was constructed between the years 1815 and 1818, but James was unable to pay his debts and was forced to sell the property. The building was restored by the NSW Public Works Department and then became a Division of the Australian Foundation for the Disabled, providing employment for the disabled.
Richmond has a range of educational facilities, from primary and high schools to Technical and Further Education (TAFE) and university campuses.
Last updated 25/01/15