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Ilford Village

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Ilford (Co. Roxburgh) 32°58’S. 149°51’E., 16 km SW of Kandos, on Crudine R.; Keen’s Swamp till 1868; village gaz. 1880; farming, grazing, orchards; Angl. C. (St Paul’s) b. 1875 by Robert Martin, repairs 1899 by Oliver; cemetery (143 graves 1871+), 1897; FB; gale 1934; lock-up b. 1876 by Robert Martin; PO 1859, burnt down 1932; PS, closed 1903; 3 quarries; Rom. Cath. C. 1873 d. by Edward Gell, new one (Our Lady Help of Christians) 1895, damaged 1934; sawmill (Ilford Sawmilling Society Ltd.) 1926; scarlet fever 1898; school (Keen’s Swamp till 1861) 1859-61, reopened 1870, additions 1883 by W. Giles and S. Manell; telephone 1906; TX 1928, automatic 1988; Unit. C. (orig. Wes. Meth.) b. 1867 by George Harris, d. by Thomas Rowe, closed, sold 2010 to Dennis Allard and Sheila Carroll; winery (Mountilford) 1985; pop. с.150 (1866), 71 (1901), 191 (1911), 227 (1933), 148 (1947), 149 (1954), 193 (1961), 240 (2006), 306 (2011)1 .


29 July 1922
Ilford is on the Cudgegong-Mudgee road. It is a place of the past, one of the towns of the old carrying days. Many of the houses are gone to decay, their roofs of shingles dropping off in patches. At one time it evidently boasted three or four little hotels, now there is none. I got there at nightfall and accommodation for the night was my lookout, went to a couple of places, but no hope of a lodging, but at last was recommended to go to Mrs. Guthrie's. The place had been an hotel for many years but had been closed by the wisdom of a lot of well meaning don't knows. It is strange these good people call loudly for the closing of the hotel, but propose nothing better, and the traveller suffers, but this is not Ilford. Yes, in reply to my inquiries, I could be put up for the night, my horse as well. I knew I had struck a good camp by the satisfied way my horse walked into his stable. A horse is a good judge anytime of his surroundings, especially if he has knocked about a bit. Mrs. Guthrie is a most kindly old soul, one of the old style landladies who gave many a feed away to the poor and needy travellers of which there were hundreds in the way back days, when a policeman didn't run you in as a vag, because your luck was out and your belly asked for tucker. A good tea, plenty of the best; and a lengthy yarn on old times (yet was far too short) with my hostess and her son brought bedtime, and sunrise caught me napping in my comfortable bed. Breakfast as boys say, a stunner. The settlement - I won't say how much for man and horse, it was far too little. If anyone travelling Ilford way is benighted, I feel sure they will not ask in vain at Mrs. Guthries'. In the daylight, I had a look round the once thriving little town. There is still an up-to-date store kept by Mr. Olliver, a police station deserted, a fine public building with a sadly depleted attendance roll of children, and a rabbit works, the product of which goes to Sydney via Capertee. The town is proud of the fact that a large number of their young men took part in the big war and made good. There is some very nice land in and around Ilford and some very fair crops of corn and potatoes are grown, but like all roadside towns that were built up with team traffic the railway has killed it. Leaving the old town seemed give me the same feeling as walking through a shell destroyed town in France - can't see why, unless, it was the forlorn look of the deserted houses. One follows the metal road, made so many years ago and it is still in good repair. A little distance along the road and the time worn church is passed, service is still held in it2 .


1 Simpson, Phillip. Historical Guide to New South Wales. North Melbourne, Vic: Australian Scholarly Publishing Pty Ltd, 2020, p. 364.
2 A CROSS COUNTRY TRIP (1922, July 29). Wellington Times (NSW : 1899 - 1954), p. 6. Retrieved April 17, 2023, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article137407315

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