ROMSEY will celebrate its 150th birthday on Saturday 26th Feb 2011. The township was gazetted as a town on February 25, 1861.
Like most settlements Romsey began beside a creek, which in this case was called Five Mile Creek as it was approximately that distance from the slightly earlier settlement of Lancefield. The first land sales were held in Kilmore in 1855. Various allotments were sold from this time onwards, around the area reserved for a future township, later to be named Romsey. One of the earliest dwellings was built by Sidney Seymour in the mid 1850s and this unique cottage is now maintained by the Historical Society and can be viewed.
The Romsey district was rich farming land and provided a "food basket" for travelers to the gold fields in the mid-to-late 1800s. Potatoes were grown for many years, until WW2 caused farming to change to sheep and cattle. Now days Romsey is more of a commuter town, but still retains its rural charm and is part of the tourist attractions of the Macedon Ranges Shire.
The anniversary celebrations will be a chance for residents to reflect on the rich history of the township.
A photo exhibition will also be held in the Romsey Mechanics’ Institute and members of the Romsey and Lancefield Districts Historical Society will be available to take visitors on an historical walk through the town. Seymour Cottage will also be open on the day and a community dinner will be held at Romsey House.
The celebration this weekend will include a market selling photos, postcards and books on Romsey, plus coasters, magnets and other memorabilia.
Chefs from the town’s three restaurants – Sicilian Vespers, Soltan Pepper and The Bay Tree – will serve food from 7pm.
The event will raise funds for the historical society. Tickets: $95 per person.
Details about the Celebration Dinner please contact: Joanne Hagen: 0432 320 553.
An excellent book: ROMSEY: A Veritable Garden of Eden (by Peter Mitchell, Alan Jackson, Carol Moore and Gavin Smith from West Bourke Books Inc.) will be available for sale at $25 over the weekend.