Convict Stockades
of Lithgow, NSW

Comleroy Road > Comleroy Rd Convict Camp > NSW Stockades > Lithgow Stockades

In the 1830s, many convict stockades were built to house convict iron gangs working on roads and bridges in New South Wales.

Surveyor General, Sir Thomas Mitchell, was building a new road from Mt Victoria to Bathurst, that descended the Blue Mountains via Mt Victoria Pass then deviated northwards towards the town of Rydal. To complete the cuttings, road buttresses and bridges required by this new colonial western road, convict stockades were built at Mount Victoria, Hassans Walls, Bowens Hollow, Mount Kirkley and Mount Walker, in the Greater Lithgow area of NSW.

As well as convict huts, usually enclosed by a high wall, some convict stockades had quite a number of buildings such as a Commandant's house, barracks for the guards, stores, kitchens etc.

These convict stockade sites have now all virtually become bare grassy paddocks. However, fascinating artefacts have been discovered on these sites that give rare glimpses into Australia's convict history.

Ollie Leckbandt has spent decades exploring the convict stockade sites of the Lithgow area. He has written books showing many of the artefacts which have been found and explaining the significance of these artefacts.

Artefacts on these sites included coins, military buttons, insignia, buckles, name plates, musket rounds, thimbles, clay pipes, china, bottles and fragments of tools. From these clues, many details of the lifestyle and conditions of the convicts and their regimental guards can be deduced.

convict stockade button
convict stockade insignia
convict clay pipes
Convict stockade artefacts documented by Ollie Leckbandt from sites in the Lithgow area, clockwise from top left: a gilded, crowned military button of the 48th Regiment; an insignia from the 80th Regiment; and fragments of clay tobacco pipes.

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