Dubbo is the ‘capitol’ of the central west of NSW. Dubbo is a small city by city terms, but is the growth centre of the region and has all essential services. Unfortunately Dubbo has adopted the growth for growth sake mantra, and this culture has rubbed off onto the people and institutions. Take away the Taranga Zoo, and then there is no reason to visit.
The explorer, John Oxley, was the first European to report on the area now known as Dubbo in 1818. The first permanent settler in the area was Robert Dulhunty, described as one of the wealthiest citizens in the Australian colony at the time. There are records of squatters being given permission to set up large sheep and cattle stations in the area in 1824 but these were not maintained.
In 1846, due to the number of settlers in the area, the government decided to establish a courthouse, police station and lock-up in the Dubbo area. A constables residence was completed in 1847 and a wooden slab construction courthouse and lock-up in early 1848. By this time, the settlement had only four buildings; the constable’s residence, courthouse (a really beautiful building) and lock-up, (now a museum) a store and an inn.
Given the Zoo will take a couple days, allow a minimum three days when visiting Dubbo.