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Castle Hill

Castle Hill Road, Townsville

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Castle Hill (2016); Paddy Waterson

Castle Hill (2016)

Known by its Aboriginal name Cutheringa, Castle Hill has been synonymous with European images of Townsville since the 1860s. Castle Hill was named by Andrew Ball, who founded this settlement site in 1864. It was known as Castletown, but was changed to Townsville in 1865, honouring Robert Towns who established a boiling-down works and wool store here. Castle Hill dominates the town and influenced its disordered street layout. In 1888, the council created a reserve to protect Castle Hill’s vegetation from destruction by goats and humans. The goats remained until the 1930s. A road was built to the summit as an unemployment relief project during the Depression. A radar station, communications and observation post were built during WWII. In 1942, the gravestone of Robert Towns, after whom the town is named, was acquired from his Sydney burial site and re-erected on the summit. During the 1960s, new additions included water reservoirs, a quarry, restaurant, car- park and communications installations. Radio communications erected in 1974 continue to serve civil aviation, ambulance, fire brigade, police, State Emergency Services and customs. In 1962, students of James Cook University painted an emblem of ‘The Saint’, a popular TV show, on the northern cliff face.

Coordinates: -19.25762623, 146.79954411

Full details of this heritage-registered place are in the Heritage register.

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
Last reviewed
1 July 2022
Last updated
28 February 2023