The Forbes Town & Around Web site
Forbes Central West NSW
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Forbes Heritage - Heritage Trail
..abundant in history, Forbes has long been known for its historic buildings..
...still in use today.
  • The Town Hall opened in 1891 to replace the humble run-down meeting place of the Municipal Council on the same site,  The cost of the new building was over 5,000 pounds.  Dame Nellie Melba sang here in 1909.  The Town Hall is used for a range of activities including mayoral functions, public meetings, concerts, charity balls and private events.  It was featured in the move "The Dish".  (Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW))
  • The Post Office completed in 1881.  The first of four post offices was established in late 1861 under the name Black Ridge Post Office. There was one lone postal officer serving a digging s population of 15,000 in April 1862.  The present Post Office is featured on a set of commemorative stamps. (Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW))
  • The Albion Hotel - was first established in 1861.  The building lost to fire in February 2009 was completed in the early 1890's.  Formerly one of the town's Cobb & Co stops and booking office  it had a tower on top that was used as a lookout for approaching coaches. (Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW))
  • St John's Anglican Church -  building began in 1874 and the nave was completed in 1877. Further extensions were added in 1969.  Its beautiful memorial stained glass windows are greatly admired by all who visit. (Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW))
  • Vandenberg Hotel - Fronting Victoria Square and the Court House, the original part of this hotel was built before 1879.  Named after its first owner, it once had a large hall adjoining beautiful gardens, a fountain and stables. J.H. Bates, the local architect, who helped bring Forbes out of its gold rush past and turn it into a town of substance and elegance, had his office here.  He was responsible for replacing many wooden structures with brick buildings.  The hotel retains its large verandah in near-original condition. (Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW))
  • St Andrew's Presbyterian Church - completed in 1877.  Local master stonemasons assisted in building this rusticated stone church.  It replaced an earlier wooden church which was situated to some dissatisfaction, on the eastern edge of town near what was then swampy ground. (Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW))
  • Victoria Park - A lovely park within the old town square with a gracious fountain donated by Mayor William Thomas in 1891.  The delicate cast iron rotunda is still used for musical events and civic functions.  H.R.H Prince Charles planted an elm tree in the park during his visit to Forbes in 1994. (Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW))
Forbes Town Hall 1891Forbes Town Hall 1891Post Office 1881Albion Hotel before the fire in 2009Albion Hotel after the fireSt John's Anglican Church 1874 - 1877Vandenberg Hotel 1879St Andrew's Presbyterian Church 1877Victoria Park 1891 - FountainVictoria Park 1891 - RotundaForbes Courthouse 1880NSW Government Offices - Lands Office - late 19th Century timber architecture.Anglesey House 1884National Australia Bank 1884St Laurence O'Toole's Catholic Church 1878 - 1880St Laurence O'Toole's Catholic Church Presbytery 1878 - 1880Forbes Library - 1923Lachlan Arcade 1892Anz Bank Building - classified by the Nation Trust.Westpac Bank - classified by the National TrustFormer Australia Hotel - established in 1899Victoria Hotel ForbesVampire Jet - single seater fighter bomber 1949
  • Court House - built in 1880.  Forbes Court House originally served a vast district which included Parkes and Condobolin.  It is one of nine items within the Victoria Square precinct classified by the National Trust.  (Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW))
  • NSW Government Offices - known largely as the Lands Office - a sophisticated example of late 19th century timber architecture.  One of the first purpose-built government offices in Forbes.  (Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW))
  • Anglesey House - a beautifully restored two storey Victorian town house in Templar Street built in 1884 by merchant William Thomas.  It is screened by a fine cast iron balcony and verandah.  Complementing the house is an elegant brick and cast iron fence.  It has stone stables at the rear..  (Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW))
  • National Australia Bank - Designed by Mansfield Bros and built in 1884, this was one of the first substantial bank buildings in Forbes.  It is almost original and occupies a corner site, which makes it of great importance to the streetscape in Lachlan Street.(Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW))
  • St Laurence o'Toole's Catholic Church & Presbytery - Originally a neat cut stone chapel with 11 Gothic windows and a porch and tower, the foundation stone for St Laurence's win laid in 1878 and the building opened in 1880. It was the third Catholic church in Forbes.  The first was destroyed by a spring hurricane in 1862.  When the site was chosen for the present church it was regarded by the congregation as the finest in Forbes.  The elegant Federation period Presbytery is a component in part of a significant group of church buildings.  The Presbytery is still occupied by members of the Catholic clergy.  The building was also used as the "Mayor's residence" in the hit film "The Dish".       (Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW))
  • Forbes Pioneer Cemetery - Once referred to as 'God's Acre', Forbes' first cemetery is situated about 3 kilometres east of town on Sandhills Road, near the old Victoria Lead.  It is the final resting place for many of Forbes' earliest residents - most who came seeking gold in the 1861-1863 gold rush.  Early in the 20th century the last of the worn wooden headings was still decipherable: 'Bagwill, Sofala Gold Police, Died 1862.'.  Many who lie here were victims of 'Lachlan' (typhoid) fever.  Since 1862 most burials have taken place in the general cemetery.  (Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW))
  • Forbes Library -  1923.  The Paul Wenz Estate Personal Library is situated in the library.  Forbes Family History Group is located at the rear of the Library.  This room is one of the best resourced local history centres in the Central West.  Extensive archives include microfilms of Forbes newspapers dating from 1861, maps, photographs, family histories, cemetery and church records, reference books, fiche, networked computers and many more valuable nation-wide resources.
  • Lachlan Arcade - built in 1892 these premises have been restored to bring this large historic arcade back to life (Rankin Street, Forbes).
  • The Westpac & ANZ Bank buildings - (Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW))
  • The former Australia Hotel 99 Lachlan Street, & The Victoria Hotel 104 Lachlan Street are also - Classified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW)
  • Vampire Jet - located on the shores of Lake Forbes a single-seater fighter bomber introduced tot the RAAF in 1949.  This jet carried four 20mm cannons and 2000 lb rockets
Click any image to view large image gallery.
Visitor Information Centre
Forbes Heritage Trail:
A a trail throughout the Forbes CBD and beyond providing a comprehenisive insight into the magnificant heritage features that make the Forbes township so unique.
  • The CBD Walk  -  (18 Sites - 110 minutes to complete)
  • Walk or Drive  -  (2 Sites - 40 minutes to complete)
  • Drive  -  (4 Sites - 30 minutes to complete)
A brochure detailing the Heritage Trail can be obtained from the Forbes Shire Council offices, located at the corner of Harold and Court Street, Forbes.
Forbes NSW is one of 18 regions in the HIGHWAY WEST, family of NSW Town websites.
Visit the 18 regions in the Highway West, Central West, Central Tablelands and Blue Mountains NSW, family of web sites.