Toodyay Things to Do

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    CHRISTMAS 360

    by balhannah Written Apr 11, 2015

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    Christmas 360, is a Christmas shop like I had seen in Europe but not in Australia! I never expected to see a large one like this in a country town in Australia!

    This shop sells everything to do with Christmas, from decorations to lights and Christmas trees and everything in-between. The shop stocks lots of different decorations to major department stores.

    Evidently the owners had travelled overseas and seen the Christmas shops over there. Back they came full of ideas and now have created their own Christmas shop.

    I loved the window display of animated Elves making Christmas gifts.

    Open daily 9am - 5 pm.

    Christmas 360 Christmas 360 Christmas 360
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    TOODYAY COURTHOUSE

    by balhannah Written Apr 10, 2015

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    No longer used as the Toodyay Court House, this Federation Free Classical styled building is now the municipal offices.
    This Court House, was built over the ruins of a former convict depot.
    Interestingly, extensive archaeological remains of this former convict depot, were found buried underneath by Western Australian University students.

    WHAT IS A CONVICT DEPOT?

    As thousands of convicts came to this area from 1850 to 1868, Convict depots were set up as administrative centres for hiring ticket-of-leave men to local landowners and providing accommodation when the men were between jobs. Hundreds of ticket-of-leave men, and later probationary convicts, passed through the Toodyay Convict Depot.

    This is what University of Western Australia students found..........
    "They excavated six trenches in 2010, revealing intact foundations of the barracks, hospital, kitchen, warders’ quarters, commissariat store and privy as well as objects used by the convicts and guards. Future excavations may reveal more information about how the convicts lived and were treated, as well as the lives of their overseers.”

    All is listed on the heritage register.

    Old Courthouse
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    OLD GAOL MUSEUM COMPLEX

    by balhannah Updated Apr 10, 2015

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    The Old Gaol Museum and Police Stables are an interesting part of Toodyay's history.

    I especially like reading and learning about Australian Bushrangers. Joseph Bolitho Johns, Western Australia’s best known bushranger, was one I hadn't heard of!
    He was well known in this area. He stole horses and was put in this gaol, then managed to escape from his cell, by breaking the lock and scaling the wall which was topped with broken glass bottles to deter escapees. I had to smile when I read this - He stole the Resident Magistrate’s horse, saddle and bridle for his getaway!,

    This sturdy built Newcastle Gaol (old town name) was not the first gaol. This one was built using materials from the original lockup and used convict labour. When completed in 1865, there were warder’s quarters, a courtroom, exercise yard, kitchen and storeroom, and nine cells. The largest of these cells was used for the Aboriginal prisoners, and was fitted with an iron bar along the bottom of the wall.
    The Gaol closed in 1904 and then was rented as a dwelling. The Dorizzi family family lived here. I don't know how many children they had, but they did have three boys who used the cells as their bedrooms. The three of them joined the Australian army to fight in WW II. How sad it was, that in 1945, three brothers died at war. It must have been a terribly hard time for the parents.
    One cell is now dedicated to them and to all local servicemen and women who did not return home.

    Across the road are stables from 1891 which remained in use until 1955. They are part of the Old Gaol Museum complex which has permanent and temporary displays

    Opening Hours

    Monday to Friday: 10.00am-3.00pm
    Saturday to Sunday: 10.00am-3.30pm

    Open every day of the week except Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year’s Day and Good Friday

    ADMISSION FEES
    Adults/children: $ 3.00
    Family pass (2 adults & 2 children): $ 10.00
    Children under 6 years: free
    Free entry on Australia Day

    Free parking beside the Gaol and across the road
    Disabled access toilets

    Old Gaol Museum Old Gaol Museum Old Gaol Stables
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    ANTIQUE SHOPS

    by balhannah Written Apr 10, 2015

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    In Toodyay, the shops are antique and so is the stuff for sale! I found Toodyay had a high number of antique & collectable shops.

    One I particularly liked, was Courtyard Antiques. The building was historic and very small, absolutely over filled with collectables, arts and crafts, antiques and more. The owner is Roz, a lovely lady I spent some time talking to. I loved her shop! There was stuff everywhere, thank-goodness she had taken quite a few goods outside otherwise I wouldn't have been able to move!
    I browsed around and asked if I could take photos, and that was ok. Roz sure would draw customers to her store!

    Roz's shop is open. Thurs 9 am -12pm, Fri - Sun & PH 9 am - 4 pm

    Courtyard Antiques Courtyard Antiques Courtyard Antiques Courtyard Antiques
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    THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH GROUP

    by balhannah Updated Apr 10, 2015

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    On the outskirts of Toodyay and on Stirling street, were a large group of impressive buildings known as the Roman Catholic church group. The land the buildings are on, has been owned by the Catholic church since 1861.

    The buildings are-

    The original St John the Baptist Church, built in 1863, closed 1963.
    Dr Growse's House, built early 1860s
    St Aloysius Convent of Mercy, built in 1903
    St Aloysius Convent of Mercy School Classrooms and Boys Boarding House, built in 1920
    Catholic Presbytery, built in 1923
    St Aloysius Convent of Mercy School Classrooms and Girls Boarding House, built in 1929
    The current St John the Baptist Church, built in 1963

    In 1855, Bishop Rosendo Salvado came to Toodyay to establish a Catholic parish in the Toodyay area. First, St. John the Baptist church was built in 1862, then in 1874, the Sister's of Mercy began educating the local Catholic children in Leeder's House until they were able to have a convent school built.
    In 1902, when Dr. Growse's house was for sale, the Catholics bought it for the Sisters to use as a seminary. Growse's House was built in the 1860s, possibly with convict labour.

    The old St John the Baptist Church from 1864 has been de-consecrated and sold, and is now the home of somebody local.. In 1963, a new St John the Baptist Church was constructed.

    Much of the site closed down and people wondered what would happen to it. Then in January 1999, along came the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate Marian Friary of Our Lady Help of Christians and it became their Friary.

    There was nothing left to do but for the the Sisters of Mercy to leave Toodyay, having lived there for 119 years.

    Dr. Growse's house Dr. Growse's house New St. John the Baptist church Old St. John the Baptist church
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    OLD TOODYAY POST OFFICE

    by balhannah Written Apr 9, 2015

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    OLD Toodyay Post Office is a fine looking red brick building. The Post office is two storey's high as it includes the Post Masters residence. Why this building is on the State Heritage Register, is because it is one of the few remaining Post Offices out of hundreds that were built in the same standard design in Western Australia. This way, it ensures that this building will be around for many more years! . It is quoted as "a fine example of both turn-of-the-century Public Works architecture and civic architecture of George Temple-Poole."
    Postal services began in Toodyay in 1842.

    It looked like it was being used as a local craft and produce shop.

    The new Post Office is at 4 Piesse Street, Toodyay.
    Opening hours
    Mon - Fri 9:00am - 5:00pm
    Saturday 9:00am - 12:00pm
    Sunday Closed

    Old Post Office
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    STIRLING STREET # 3

    by balhannah Written Apr 9, 2015

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    James Martin's cottage was one of a few that was not built by convicts. James Martin was a Blacksmith who built the cottage in Victorian vernacular style in 1890. He worked in Toodyay and lived in the cottage all his life. The front has been covered in with lattice. This was often done so extra people could sleep outside. Located at 95 Stirling Terrace

    Kirk's (Pensioner) Cottage is at 68 Stirling Street. This colonial cottage was built between 1852 and 1856 by convict labour. When the first shipments of convicts came to Western Australia from England, pensioner guards were required to accompany them. Pensioner Guards were retired army or police officers who were given pay and benefits to travel with convicts on the ships from England. Accommodation was in short supply, so land allotments were marked out in Toodyay's town site for cottages to be built for the Guards. The cottages are a little different to their original design.

    The Toodyay Tavern, is located at 82-86 Stirling street. In 1862, Joseph Monger built a hotel and a steam mill. The mill ceased operations in 1908 but the Hotel is still operating. On the exterior is a sculpture of an upside down cow!
    The Toodyay Tavern has 12 Hotel Rooms, a licensed Restaurant, public bar and beer garden.

    Next to the Toodyay Tavern, is a gorgeous "Mad Cow Cottage" selling original hand painted artwork and home décor items and accessories, and soft furnishings.
    Open -Wednesday to Sunday 10am – 4pm

    James Martin's Cottage Toodyay Tavern Upside down cow
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    VICTORIA HOTEL & BILLIARD SALOON

    by balhannah Written Apr 9, 2015

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    The Victoria Billiard Saloon is one of the few remaining billiard saloons in the state, perhaps even in Australia as I really can't remember seeing any on my travels.

    It was purpose built as a billiard saloon by the Victorian Hotel in the mid 1890's. It had two shops with a saloon at the rear. I can imagine it being a very popular place! It still is used as a Billiard room, although for some years in-between, it was a Barber's AND Betting shop. Located 114 -116 Stirling street.

    The Victoria Hotel is located next to the Billiard Saloon. The Hotel was built in 1836 as a single storey building from bricks made by the river Avon that runs through town. In 1904, a second storey was added. The Hotel manufactured its own cordials and aerated waters on the premises.

    A BIG DEAL
    January 1894 - ice cream was introduced at the hotel.
    1903 - The only Hotel with ice!

    Today, the Hotel has Villas, Hotel, and Budget accommodation ranging in price from $30 to $100.
    Counter meals are served daily 12 noon - 2.30pm & 5.30pm - 8.30pm.
    Opening Hours are TAB, Bar 10am to 11pm Mon - Sat.

    Victoria Billiard Saloon
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    STIRLING STREET - # 2

    by balhannah Written Apr 9, 2015

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    The Toodyay Memorial Hall from 1899 was one that grabbed my attention. Painted nicely, this Victorian Institutional style building had a dual-faced clock, a replica of a railway clock, added in 1988 as part of the Australian Bicentenary celebrations. As with many country town halls in Australia, the auditorium was regularly used as a picture theatre up until the 1960s.

    The Toodyay Public library is at 96 Stirling Street. The building was built in Victorian Free Classical / eclectic style, and was completed in 1874. It was one of the first civic buildings constructed in Toodyay, and was first used as the Newcastle Mechanics' Institute.
    Monday to Friday - 9.00am-5.00pm
    Saturday: 9.00am -1.00pm
    Internet access (free)
    Wifi (wireless free internet connection)

    The Wendouree Tearooms, built in 1860, are located at 110 Stirling street. The building has a prominent parapet which is slightly Egyptian in style with an art deco influence. Although most of the original building still stands, it has been concealed by the many alterations to the building over the years. What hasn't changed though, is the shop has always operated as tearooms since around 1870.

    Looking for an ATM, then head to the Bendigo Bank at 108 Stirling street. It was constructed in 1897-98 as a Federation Bungalow, with additions of Inter-war Art Deco influence. The was the Bank and the Bank Manager's residence. It has been operating as a Bank since the day it was built!

    The Toodyay Fire Station is no longer! They have a new fire station, so this Inter-war Classical-Art Deco building from 1939, is now an Art Gallery located 105-107 Stirling street.

    Memorial Hall Toodyay Library Wendouree Tearooms Bendigo Bank Old Fire Station
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    THE TOODYAY GARAGE

    by balhannah Written Apr 9, 2015

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    The Toodyay Garage, also on Stirling street, is one of the newer buildings that has quite an interesting history. The Inter-war Classical-Art Deco style gives the age away - 1926!
    It must have been long awaited as a crowd "of a hundred or so residents" were at the opening of the Garage in 1927.
    The business floundered and was sold to Ken Somers. I thought this man was ahead of his time, as he offered a taxi, a daily service to and from Perth, a distance of 87kms on roads not like today, and cars could be hired with or without drivers. Somers really made a go of the garage until in 1939, he suffered serious burns from a fire at the garage and died aged 44 years.

    The Garage closed down, then changed hands a few times, eventually being bought in 1946 by Prince and Booth who started the Toodyay Garage and Passenger Service, a daily bus passenger service to Perth.
    Business began with then running an International powered parlour coach named (Miss Toodyay) to Perth and back, even a Radio was installed on the bus to keep the passengers happy!
    "Miss Toodyay" was retired and replaced in 1950 by Miss Toodyay II (a Panhard diesel made in France), the only one of its kind in Australia.

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    SHOPS ALONG STIRLING STREET

    by balhannah Written Apr 9, 2015

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    Stirling street, the main street of Toodyay is where heritage listed buildings stand and look just like they did in the 1800's.
    Wonderful old buildings with interesting architecture line the street, many with old fashioned sign- writing and the date of when they were built. Painted and looking good, nearly all were in use today, even though it may be a different business to when they were first built.

    Unwin's double storey building is one. This store was built in Victorian Classical style in 1898 out of rendered brick. It has a parapet decorated with scrolls and finials.. The shop was originally known as Urwin's Drapery Store and now is a Bakery.

    Next door is Ellery's Arcade, a row of shops constructed over the period between 1882 to 1891 by Jane Donegan. First, three were built, then another three were added. At the time, one of the buildings Jane Donegan used as boarding house named "Mount View". After Donegan's death in 1901, the shops were sold and the gap in-between the three shops was filled making it a complete row of six shops. The buildings were named "Ellery's" after the new owner. The shops all have different style frontages and have seen different businesses through-out time, the Butcher the only one which has stayed a Butchers shop.

    Jager's Store is much newer, having been built in 1939. It was built in Victorian Classical style with Federation Filigree additions, and blends in well with the rest of the buildings.

    At 104 Stirling street, is the unique Shoe-makers house from the 1870s. It is different because the two shops are either end of a dwelling in the centre.

    Jager's Store Unwin's building (Bakery) Ellery's arcade Shoe-Makers house
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    THE FREEMASON'S HOTEL

    by balhannah Written Apr 9, 2015

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    I am making my way along the street finding the heritage listed buildings as I go. A beauty is the heritage listed Freemason's Hotel that was constructed in 1861, making it the oldest public house in Toodyay. It is a beautiful two storey building with a verandah on the first and second floors running the whole length of the building. Arches over the doors and windows and its Federation Filigree façade really compliment the building.

    You can stay here if you wish, in one of the Motel rooms or Historical hotel rooms. I hope your not afraid of Ghosts, as residents of Toodyay have seen up to 17 ghosts congregating on the stair landing! If you happen to smell rosemary or lavender, then you may have a ghost near you!

    Tariffs range from $85 to $120 AUD for a room.

    Freemason's Hotel Freemason's Hotel Freemason's Hotel
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    CONNOR'S COTTAGE & MILL

    by balhannah Written Apr 9, 2015

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    Situated beside the Tourist Information centre is Connor's Cottage, named after Daniel Conner the original owner/operator of Connor's Flour Mill. It was built in 1870 and used as a cottage for many years, then was a Bakery and now is Connor's Restaurant @ 5 Piesse Street.

    Situated on the corner of Piesse street and Stirling street, is Connor's Mill, a well known landmark of Toodyay. Toodyay is situated in the Avon Valley, a good area for agriculture. Much wheat was grown and the farmers milled it themselves using horse power. Daniel Connor realized a steam-powered Mill was needed, one that ground the wheat finer. He had the triple storey brick Mill built in 1870. A slide from the first floor doorway to wagon height, was used to slide bags of flour onto the wagons waiting below. Not much information is available, though I saw the original grind mill on the lawn outside.
    The flour produced was of very high quality, even winning an award in 1870 at an exhibition in Melbourne.
    In 1917, the Mill was sold and turned into a power station for the town.

    The Mill can be visited and the working historic machinery seen, also interpretive displays on the life of the Mill.

    OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK 9 - 3.45pm

    ADMISSION FEES
    ADULTS $3
    FAMILY PASS ( 2 Adults & 2 children) $10

    FREE ENTRY ON AUSTRALIA DAY

    Enquiries and Bookings at the Toodyay Visitor centre

    Connor's cottage
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    TOURIST INFO CENTRE & YE OLDE LOLLY SHOP

    by balhannah Written Apr 9, 2015

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    It was a shame that where we parked our car and caravan was the opposite end of town to where the Info centre was situated. Because of this, by the time I found the centre, which happens to be in a side street, I had explored most of the town.

    The centre is handy for people who walk and enjoy seeing old heritage listed buildings like me, as they have the "Toodyay Living History Walking Trail" map, where every heritage listed building has a name and a number. Beside each building, is signage with the number and details on what your seeing. (photo 2)

    The visitor centre is happy to help you with accommodation and tour bookings, visits to wineries and scenic places nearby. Locally produced crafts, food and body care products are for sale and the usual souvenirs.

    The "Ye Olde Lolly" shop is at the Info centre. Imagine having to choose from 350 different kinds of lollies and chocolates - a hard choice!
    You just may be taken back in time to when "humbugs" were lollies!

    Toodyay Info centre Look for this signage
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    ST. STEPHEN'S ANGLICAN CHURCH

    by balhannah Written Apr 9, 2015

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    My next stop is at the rather plain looking heritage listed St Stephen's Anglican Church. £25 was given to the Reverend Charles Harper to build the church. That doesn't sound much, but was a lot of money back in 1862. A former convict turned local builder, built the Church in Victorian Gothic style, with pointed arched windows and door surrounds.
    Unable to enter, I have read there is a brass altar cross and vases from 1905 that were donated to the church.
    In 1995, the first female minister gave services in this very church!

    I saw the Bell tower which happens to be the original, built from bush timber and the big Flooded gum tree, said to be approx. 400 years old.

    St. Stephen's Church
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