During Tulip Time in the Southern Highlands our usual meeting venue, The Bowral Bowling Club, becomes very busy with visiting tourists. We usually move our meetings during these two weeks and this year we visited two new exciting local venues.
On Wednesday the 14th September we held our meeting at The Mill, 210-224 Bong Bong Street, Bowral. We were treated to a delicious lunch and a tour of the premises. “The Mill Bowral” has been so named, as the site is a restored timber mill, originally built at the turn of the century, with character features such as, exposed beams, original brickwork and industrial finishes. Apart from the restaurant area there are a number of mixed use spaces intended to attract a range of different traders, from local food and produce, to artisans, homewares, furniture, designers and more. Provision has been made for a conference and workshop area, hot desks and a meeting room, catering to those that have made the tree change to Bowral, whilst still maintaining a foothold in Sydney. Collaboration and local creative business development will also be a focus of this area.
Wednesday the 21st September was once again too wet for a picnic at lookout so this time we ventured to the historic Fitzroy Inn at Mittagong. After a stunning lunch from Teena and Stephen from Phatt Duck Teena took us on a tour of the “cellars”. The Fitzroy Inn was opened in 1836 as a ‘Traveller’s Inn’ and remains operational after almost 170 years providing a unique window into Australia’s colonial past. The original kitchen in the cellars has been described by some historians as ‘the finest example’ of a convict-era built kitchen remaining in Australia. The ‘water-well’ in the middle of the floor, hand-cut into the shale below the building, is a truly remarkable work of convict masonry and craftsmanship. The convict cell, used to hold prisoners on their way to Berrima Gaol, retains the original iron shackles and hand-turned bars which securely restrained its hapless guests. The venue provided a lively atmosphere and great plans for an exciting event in the near future were hatched … stay tuned!