Nov 25, 2015

Tasmania Part 5 - Oatlands - Campbell Town

A 50klm drive up the road our next stopover was at Oatlands, we were 'lucky' to come in on the same day the towns local holds their garage sales, it's a good idea as it attracts people to the town that wouldn't normally bother, plus for those that sell it gives them some money for items they have no use for. 

The town has many historic buildings, the main attraction is the old Callington Mill which has been restored and used for demonstrations on grinding grain for flour. Right next door is the stopover camping area, we stayed two nights here and though the weather was windy and at times chilly it was a lovely town to enjoy a few walks. 

We were camped across the road from a wetlands and I spent some time watching the swans and ducks.

We left Oatlands and headed towards Ross, another lovely town lined with tall leafy tree's and more Historic buildings, Ross also boasts of having a Historic Woman's Factory, a rather strange name conjuring up the thought that there may have been an assembly line making women, but in actual fact it was a Women's Prison back in the penal days. 

The Bridge in Ross is interesting, many of the convicts that were sent to Van Diemens Land in the late 1700's early 1800's made a huge influence to Australia's heritage, the hardship they endured to sail for  around 180 days only to then be given hard labour building roads, bridges, buildings etc, we owe them our thanks. 

A look around Ross, morning tea at a local cafe and it was on to Campbell Town. All of the small towns we had recently stayed at have been off the main highway, Campbell Town the highway goes through the centre. Their are two stopovers in town, the larger is next to the 'Old Red Bridge' which itself is steeped in history, one claim is the bridge has not been restored or had any maintainence needed since it was built back in 1838. Like all other towns we have visited we had a look around and made sure we spent a few dollars, even something as small as coffee's and a few groceries helps the towns survive. Their is a 2nd camp area in town, a lot smaller and few level areas but it does have a dump place was the black water. 

Certainly different, complete with pot belly stove. 

A very interesting thing in Campbell Town was the row of bricks along the footpath, each was inscribed with a convicts name, crime committed, sentence and ship they came out on. It's incredible to think you could be sentenced to 7 years for stealing 3 handkerchiefs, Life for stealing furniture, our Court system has certainly changed and not necessarily for the better. 

Think of young James Binks, at 18 years of age he stole some lace (there has to be a story there) he was sentenced to Life! Plus a month on the treadmill ! ... James would have been very fit & tired by the end of that :-)

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