Launceston Up Close

  Stories, tall and small about Launceston, Tasmania

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Launceston - A Walk Through A Colonial Time Capsule

Posted on 10 January, 2019 at 23:15 Comments comments (1)

You have just landed in Launceston, you have 24 hours to see as much as you can around the town but you don’t want to be running around like a headless chook. So where do you go to get the most out of the town that is chock full of iconic locations?

There are a couple of places you really do need to suss out and two of them are at each end of the CBD – Cataract Gorge at the western end, and City Park is at the east end. Then there’s the big choice of stuff in the mid...

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Ronald Campbell Gunn - A Colonial Administratve Acheiver

Posted on 19 November, 2017 at 0:50 Comments comments (0)

Ronald Campbell Gunn, born in 1808 and died in 1881, was rated as Tasmania’s most eminent botanist even though his prime positions were of a public nature. He held many roles in public life including, but not limited to, being a member in both houses of the Tasmanian Parliament.

Gunn, whose family were not related to the family of Launceston builders of the same name, was born in Cape Town, South Africa, the son of a British Army officer. As a child he followed his ...

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Launceston Up Close - Linked In Article

Posted on 8 November, 2017 at 19:00 Comments comments (0)

Latest news suggests tourist numbers to Northern Tasmania are expected to double in the next three years. That is a big call, and along with this prediction is the question - Is the north of the state equipped to handle the expected influx of local and international tourists in terms of accommodation and infrastructure? Time will tell I guess.


I hope that the prediction comes true, and I hope it starts this year. I hope it starts this week!


The hear...

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Reverend John West - A Minister With A Mission

Posted on 7 November, 2017 at 18:40 Comments comments (0)

One of the colonial clergy to make his mark on Launceston, Tasmania and Australia, was a Congregational minister  called John West.  He was born in 1809 in England a...

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Lt Col William Paterson - A Dubious Leader

Posted on 21 October, 2017 at 21:20 Comments comments (0)

The gentleman that led the settlers to eventually establish the spot that became Launceston was one Lieutenant Colonel William Paterson. An army man that probably should not have been in the army!

As the son of a gardener from near Glamis Castle in Scotland, Paterson’s first love was botany. And it was as a botanist he spent several early years in South Africa collecting plants and sending them back to England. He was sponsored by the Countess of Strathmore who had an interest ...

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Matthew Brady - The Gentleman Bushranger.

Posted on 16 October, 2017 at 4:40 Comments comments (0)

Young Matthew Brady is probably Launceston’s most famous bushranger even though he didn’t spend that much time in these parts, but he was finally caught not fat from here by John Batman – but more about that a little later.

Born in 1799 as Matthew ‘Bready’, he was apparently a groom in the Manchester region. He developed excellent riding skills, to the point of being described as an elegant horseman. The crime which got him transported to the penal colony...

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Batman or Fawkner?

Posted on 6 October, 2017 at 2:35 Comments comments (0)

While I was researching my Heritage Walking Tours, I came across the interesting story of John Batman and John Pascoe Fawkner and just who established the first settlement on the shores of Port Philip Bay?  Which of the two could rightfully claim to be the father of what was to become Melbourne?

Perhaps a little about each bloke.

John Batman, born in Sydney 1801, was a colonial grazier who was described variously as a cheat, a liar, a thief and a murderer of Aborigines.

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Awesome Tasmania

Posted on 2 October, 2017 at 0:50 Comments comments (0)

We did our first trip to Tasmania in 2012/13.  Neither of us had done Tassie, and decided at fairly short notice it was time to have a flyaway holiday, and Tassie won.  We flew out of Perth - the West Australia one - on Christmas night 2012.  So we had Chrissy at home, AND got a cheap flight out of Perth.  We passed thru Melbourne and hit Hobart where we grabbed a Subaru Forrester and we toured Tasmania.

We went in an anti-clockwise direction form H...

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