Broulee

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Broulee is a town on the south coast of New South Wales between Batemans Bay and Moruya. In 2006, the town had a population of 1,292 people. Just off the beach is a Broulee Island, currently joined to the mainland, but in past years the connecting spit has been covered by water at high tide.

The first harbour in the area south of Batemans Bay was established at Broulee behind what is now known as the island. Although settlement had already commenced on the shores of the nearby Moruya River, it was not easily navigable due to a sandbar at its mouth.

An imporatant historic hub

The Broulee area was surveyed and gazetted in 1837 and land sales commenced in 1840. At that time a post office was opened with mail being delivered each week over the mountains from Braidwood. Henry Clarke took up farming in the Broulee area in the 1840's after emigrating from Ireland. The first court in the district was established also in 1840 and in 1841 Broulee was made the centre of a police district which covered the area from Jervis Bay to Eden, New South Wales.

Resolute community

In 1841 a flood washed away the sandbar at the mouth of the Moruya River. Land up the river was for sale from 1848 and the Moruya town site surveyed in 1850 and the town gazetted in 1851. That year gold was discovered at Araluen inland from Moruya and near Braidwood. The road from Moruya to Araluen became the preferred route and the functions that had been at Broulee shifted to the growing town of Moruya.

In 1859 the court, including the building, was relocated to Moruya. The building of the Erin-go-Bragh Hotel was also shifted from Broulee Island to Campbell St, Moruya. The inn building was first used as a store and later became the storekeeper's home. The building was demolished in 1978 as part of the development of the new Eurobodalla Shire offices. Footings of the inn building can still be seen on the island.

Broulee harbour was lost in 1873 as removal of vegetation for an access road on the land spit eroded the spit and isolated what is now known as Broulee Island. In the last decades of the twentieth century, the spit or tombolo has reformed.

From 1972 the island has been managed as the Broulee Island Nature Reserve.

There is a lighthouse on Burrewarra Point to the north of Broulee.

For more, go to www.visitnsw.com

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