Longford

A quiet, inland locality that has been classified as an historic town, Longford is located close to Launceston in a farming district noted for its wool, dairy produce and stock breeding.

Annual Events

The annual Longford Show was first held in 1858 and is one of the longest running rural shows in Australia. Held in October, it attracts between 7000 and 8000 people. It includes equestrian events, poultry and dog shows, chopping and tree felling, sheep and fleeces, rides and games, as well as displays of artwork from local schools.

Longford Racecourse is the oldest continuously operating racecourse in Australia. Longford is home to many horse studs and training facilities, and the Longford races are held annually on New Year’s Day, with thoroughbred horse racing and the Elders Webster Longford Cup.


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Where Is it?

6 km west of Perth; 24 km south of Launceston off Illawarra Road at the convergence of the Macquarie River and the South Esk River.

Things To See And Do

Markets

LONGFORD MARKETS
Wellington St, Longford
Trading: 2nd Sunday of the month
Type: Art & Craft, Produce. Phone: 0403 087 462. Website: http://www.longfordmakersmarket.com
A makers market with all handmade or homegrown goods and produce.


Christ Church

Longford district has many buildings included on the Tasmanian Heritage Register. The pick of them is Christ Church, a sandstone building which dates from 1839. Sited in an attractive and expansive church yard in the centre of town, Christ Church was constructed between 1839 and 1844 to the design of Robert de Little and consists of a broad buttressed nave with cast iron columns (added in 1878). de Little (1808-76) came to the colony in 1830 and established himself in Launceston as a builder and architect. The magnificent five-light east window, with Perpendicular Gothic tracery, depicting Christ and the Four Evangelists, was made by William Wailes, of Newcastle-upon-Tyne in 1842 and was probably the earliest figural window in the country. The carved altar in arts and crafts idiom was designed by Alexander North. The sandstone exterior is dominated by an imposing west-end tower which was completed as recently as 1960 through the raising of the stonework by around 5 metres. The church clock and bell were gifts from George IV; its stained glass window is impressive, and the churchs graveyard the site of the First Settlers Cemetery includes such prominent Tasmanian families as the Archers and the Reibeys.
Location: Christ Church Anglican Church, Cnr Wellington and William Streets, Longford


Brickendon Historic Farm

One of Tasmania’s World Heritage Convict Sites, Brickendon Historic Farm and Convict Village was built by William Archer in 1824; the village is still owned by his descendents. The complex affords the a rare chance to see a Georgian homestead, convict-built Gothic chapel, Dutch barns, chicken house, blacksmith shop and tool shed and stay in historic farm cottages. There is also a four hectare (10 acre) historic garden for you to explore.

Surrounding Area

Clarendon House

Clarendon House is arguably one of Australia’s greatest Georgian houses still standing today. It has formal gardens and grounds, a tree lined avenue, Italianate facade, restored early colonial outbuildings and is owned by the National Trust. The wealthy grazier and merchant James Cox (son of William Cox) had the house built in 1838.


Woolmers Estate

 Prominent among the early settlers, the Archer family built a number of grand houses and estates in the area. They farmed and developed the land, and built a number of homesteads which are among the finest in northern Tasmania. Six generations of Archers have lived in Woolmers Estate, from 1817 to 1994; it is now owned by the Woolmers Foundation Inc and is open to the public. Regarded as the most authentic remaining example of an Australian pioneer farm, it has established a National Rose Garden, with more than 4,000 roses on display.


Kerry Lodge Bridge

Kerry Lodge Bridge, also known as Strathroy Bridge and Jinglers Creek Bridge, is located on the former Midland Highway, some 9.6 km just south of Launceston. The bridge was authorised by Lieutenant Governor Arthur, with work commencing in 1834. Lieutenant William Kenworthy was in charge on site, with John Lee Archer in overall charge in Hobart. Archer was also responsible for designing the magnificent Ross Bridge.
This bridge and causeway of bluestone masonry is a high single barrel vault across a deep gully. The massive facades are decorated with a colonnade of narrow pilasters, string courses and relief panels in the parapet walls. The copings are of random rough stones set on edge, unusual in Tasmania and particularly curious because at the time the bridge was built it was intended to have moulded freestone copings.
Construction 1834-35 was supervised by Kenworthy. Coincidentally, Kenworthy had purchased Kerry Lodge Farm four years previously. After an initial delay in consideration of tenders for the supply of lime, work was under way in February 1834 and by October correspondence was entered into about the provision of freestone for the coping of the parapet walls, a plan which did not materialise.


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