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Timber town Glenreagh celebrates

The Glenreagh Timber Festival in northern New South Wales has an unashamed focus on all things to do with wood. Source: Timberbiz, The Coffs Harbour News

Glenreagh has a rich history in timber dating back to the first settlement in the Orara Valley in 1858. The first settlers were farmers, then timber getters and then miners when gold was discovered.

As gold resources dwindled the country was opening up with railway and road construction so the need for timber saw the district flourish.

In an age before mechanisation men developed special skills and were creating buildings from pit-sawn timber. Railway sleepers were cut using a broad axe and then later the more modern swing saw.

The community of Glenreagh aims to preserve the skills developed by its community for future generations to enjoy.

To achieve these aims the proactive Glenreagh community has come together to organise its annual timber festival which celebrates this heritage with a day of family entertainment with wood chopping, skills demonstrations, craft displays and sales, markets, plus children’s activities, food and refreshments.

Last year’s spectacular fence-splitting races will again be a feature of this year’s event, which is set down for Saturday, July 28. The other popular events include post-splitting contests, sleeper cutting and timber crafting.

The inaugural Glenreagh Timber Festival was held in 2005.