Cunningham Celebration was a blast from the past!

A highlight of the day was the opportunity to take a ride in the Cobb & Co coach. Photo: Grace Schneider.

On Saturday 6 April, 2024, just a little over 200 years since Alan Cunningham found Pandora Pass over the Great Dividing Range and onto the Liverpool Plains,  Coolah locals gathered on the ‘Coolah Creek’ property, not far from Cunningham’s Camp, to celebrate this bicentenary.

With a backdrop of wooded hills, a rocky creek and grassy paddocks, the locals enjoyed a campfire and a lunch of slow cooked lamb, savoured billy tea and sweet treats, tapped along to live music by November Shorn and enjoyed old fashioned fun with some dancing, kids old-style games and the star of the show a Cobb & Co coach that took everyone for a ride to experience travel 19th century style.

Zara Schneider, winner of the girls best costume enjoyed a ride in the Cobb & Co coach. Photo: Grace Scheider.


Looking the part – attendees on the day enjoying the Cobb & Co coach. Photo: Jillie Arnott


The happy winner of the boys best costume, Hunter Schneider.  Photo: Grace Schneider.



Attendees had been encouraged to attend in historical garb and there were a number of hard-working gentleman that looked the part along with ladies in various styles from the 1800s.    Awards were presented to best costumes – ladies (Celia Piper), gents ( Ben Cavanagh ), girl (Zara Schneider), boy (Hunter  Schneider), best petticoat (Donna Pilcher ) and best beard (John Horne).

Celia Piper, winner of the best ladies costume, walking by the creek. Photo: Annette Piper

Everyone who attended thoroughly enjoyed the fun and might well be looking forward to the next opportunity to celebrate in similar style.

Campfire and camp ovens, Cunningham 200 year celebration
Campfire and camp oven cooking at the Cunningham 200 year celebration. Photo: Katie Burgess




Koalas in the Coolah Tops National Park

Koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) Creator: Lucy Morrell Copyright: NSW Government

Over the last decade or two there have been a few unregistered sightings of koalas in the Coolah Tops National Park, but a very recent sighting was fortunately reported to NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service – and much excitement has ensued!

This sighting indicates that a koala population is likely in the area and NSW NPWS intends to carry out some surveys in the Park and on adjacent landowner’s properties to ascertain the spread and numbers.   The community may be able to assist NPWS – we will share more information as it comes to hand.

For the moment, the NPWS Koala Project Team is in preparation mode.

So, if you are at The Tops, don’t forget to look up!

If you see a koala at The Tops, do report the sighting to NPWS – phone their local office on 6825 4364 .   If you have your phone with you, get a GPS location of where the sighting was to assist the NPWS find the koala again.  Also of use would be to note down what the koala was doing eg. sleeping, feeding, moving etc., and if you have a whizz-bang camera, a photo would be great too!

Looking forward to more sightings ❤