The Barton’s were buried in the Barton Park Private Cemetry, which is still standing to this day. An auction was held to sell the remains of the residents’ furniture and belongings, although it has been made apparent that some books and various items were stolen during the auction. The house was later demolished and no pieces were left behind; the construction of Lake Wallace was then commenced. The Lake was built to provide cooling water for coal, for the Wallerawang PowerStation that was built nearby. The Wallerawang Powerstation shut down in 2014 and no longer relies on the freshwater from Lake Wallace. Today the Lake is used simply for recreational use only.
First opening in 1957, the Wallerawang Powerstation took over from the Lithgow PowerStation, which subsequently closed down. Power was generated at the power station for the surrounding areas and regions. In total 220 employees lost their jobs when the Station closed, but some found employment at the Mount Piper Power Station located just 10 minutes away from Wallerawang. Since then, the Power Station has been dormant and the 175-meter-tall stacks are set to be demolished. Green spot is currently discussing plans for the remains of the PowerStation; however, they are still unsure of what they will do. As for now, it will remain a local attraction.
The town of Wallerawang is full of rich and meaningful history, the local primary school, Wallerawang Public, has operated at three different sites since its opening. The first school opened in the year 1860, along the Main Street of Wallerawang. The building was a large sandstone room, the room had an upstairs where the teacher, Mrs. Walker (James Walker’s daughter), resided. The school was quite small during its first initial year of opening and only taught 19 boys and 20 girls.
In 1881, the school began to grow and a new building was constructed. The site, only a couple hundred meters up the road, and is known today as the ‘Black Gold Motel’. The new school consisted of two large classrooms and housed an onsite residency for Mrs Walker. During these years the enrolments significantly grew, around 400 students began learning at Wallerawang Public School. To accommodate the students, classrooms from surrounding schools were brought in. The school stopped operating at this location when the current school was built. While it wasn’t the end of an era for the property, Linda and Rob Cluff went on to buy it and have turned it into one of the area’s most affordable and comfortable motels. The Motel has undergone many renovations over the years, including turning the once kindergarten room into a successful onsite restaurant.
The third Wallerawang Public School was built in 1995, and is located adjacent to Lake Wallace. Several teachers of the school helped build the new blocks, and it has continued to operate on the site ever since. This was a very different school from the ones that had existed in the past. The school was built with two-story blocks, a canteen area, library, and toilet block. In the centre of the courtyard, stands the original Wallerawang Public, school bell. The bell has been used throughout all three sites, the bell was used to represent the start and end of a school day. The bell is no longer used for this purpose and is only used for special occasions.
Wallerawang supplied fuel to RAAF and US Army Air Forces during World War II. It was home to RAAF No.4, a depot for inland aircraft that ceased operations in 1944. In Wallerawang today, we are honoured with a war memorial commemorating those who served in World War II. It is located in the main street next the Old Wallerawang Train Station.
Wallerawang train station was once part of a very successful rail line that connected to Bowenfels. The rail line started operations on March 1st, 1870, and was extended to Rydal in early July 1870. By 1882, the Wallerawang Train Station was a junction station, and by 1889, the authorities replaced the trains with road coaches, and as a result, it was closed. Today the Train Station has been listed as a heritage site and since 2017 the Station has been converted into a café, the Station Expresso. The café sells a variety of food, ranging from sweets to savory. They also bake gluten-free goods, their gluten-free lava cake has been a hit over the years, a delicious chocolate indulgence topped with whipped cream. The platform is the perfect place for an afternoon coffee and cake. Occasionally you may see a train or two passes through the station.
A day trip to Wallerawang is a great way to learn about the small historical town and its fascinating history. Consider packing a picnic blanket and having a family picnic along the water banks of Lake Wallace or stopping for a drink and snack at one of the local small businesses while you explore the area. Walk down to the Wallerawang Bakery or indulge in delectable Chinese cuisine, both located on Main Street.