Back in Tassie (8) – our heritage South of Launceston

Because Tasmania is an island, it has grown and developed more slowly than the mainland Australian states.  As a result, much more of its early to mid 19th century Georgian architecture has survived on country estates and in its towns and cities.  Brisbane and Perth are notorious among Australian cities for the extent to which they have failed to maintain much of an obvious architectural link with their past.  Their city fathers have chosen to flaunt their modernity – to the sadness of many and loss of much of irreplaceable value.

On our road “swing” through Tasmania last April, we spent some very pleasant hours in Evandale, a rural and National Trust listed heritage town south of Launceston, at Clarendon, a property a little further south, and in the town of Ross, still further south.  Both the towns and the agricultural estate are typical of the graceful architecture that adorns so much of Tasmania.  All were born of the suitability of Tasmania’s inland plains for sheep farming which sprang up beginning in the very early 1800s.  Many of these first settlers flourished and became wealthy, as did the towns that supported the farms.

There are good websites about the history and special features of EvandaleClarendon House, and Ross.  Let me try to pass on some of the enjoyment with a few of our photos.

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Evandale’s St Andrew’s Anglican Church was built in 1871 for a congregation that dates from 1834.
The Presbyterian Church (now Uniting) in Evandale - opposite the Anglican building and just as attractive
The 1839 built St Andrew’s Presbyterian Church (now Uniting) in Evandale – opposite the Anglican building and just as attractive. It seems the Scots insisted on honouring St Andrew, the patron saint of Scotland, even though the Anglicans had chosen that name for their original congregation and its wooden building, established a few years earlier!
Clarendon House, a few kilometres south of Evandale, has seen many alterations but has been restored to its old grandeur
Clarendon House, a few kilometres south of Evandale, has seen many alterations but has been restored to its old grandeur.  It is Australia’s largest and grandest rural colonial house.
Further south again, the Ross Bridge was built in 1836 under the orders of the legendary Governor Macquarie, who did much to improve infrastructure and building standards in the colonial beginnings of New South Wales and Tasmania
Further south again, the Ross Bridge was built by convict labour in 1836 under the orders of Governor Arthur
The beautiful interior of the Ross Uniting Church (formerly Methodist)
The beautiful interior of the 1885 Ross Uniting Church (formerly Methodist)
One of the old buildings in Ross houses a Wool heritage museum, reflecting the importance of wool growing to the district since the 1830s.
One of the old buildings in Ross houses the Tasmanian Wool Centre, reflecting the importance of wool growing to the district since the 1810s. This modern tapestry celebrates wool in wool.
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