Jacaranda Trees line the streets of Grafton, NSW


Showing posts with label Matilda Centre. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Matilda Centre. Show all posts

Sunday, September 9, 2018

THE OUTBACK TOWN OF WINTON

Oh boy! I have been busy with U3A and my blogging has been neglected. I was writing about our trip to Longreach and Winton in far west Queensland. Our tour bus drove us from Longreach to Winton where our guides dropped us off near Arno's Wall and they told us to follow the wall and we would come to the hotel where we could walk through to the main street.  Arno migrated from Germany back in the 60's he was an opal cutter at Opalton but he is most famous for his art installation, his Wall. The wall is 2 metres high and 70 metres long. It is made of concrete and rocks that he brought into town from the opal mine. In the wall he has concreted in every kind of house hold items and more: lawn mowers, boat propellors, type writers, sewing machines and motor bikes.

 A very small part of Arno's Wall.

We came through the hotel to the main street in Winton. I have recently discovered that this hotel was the first one built in Winton back in the mid 1880's but obviously has been updated over the years. Of course we had to stop in the coffee shop on the next corner for 'you know who'. 

 While drinking our coffee I saw a sign pointing to the back of the shop saying 'Thru to the historic open air theatre'. It was just as it was in the old days, the projection room too. It was a fun museum.

 We continued down the street to a lovely little opal shop. I resisted buying any. Too expensive.

Bill with Banjo Paterson, a famous Australian poet, who wrote "Waltzing Matilda"
 (you may recall that our grandson has the same name)
 Then we had to meet the rest of our group and guides at the brand new 'Matilda Centre', which is a museum dedicated to our informal national song,  'Waltzing Matilda' including the times and lives of the local people. The Winton people are very proud that our famous song was written in the Winton District. Their museum was burnt down a few years ago and they have just opened this new one. It is a shame that they lost many of the artefacts.
 However, they have done a great job with the new one with what they have and supplemented with many digital displays.
We learnt about the history of the song, the writer, Banjo Paterson, the wool industry, transport and life style of the times. The next day we were off to see the dinosaurs....the reason I came on this trip.
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