Baradine is on the western edge of the Pilliga forest area, about 50km north of Coonabarabran. The town has a population of about 800. To the east is the Pilliga forest; to the west the plains, where cattle and sheep are grazed, and wheat grown. Baradine once had a much larger population – around 1500 – and had 12 timber mills in operation; these days it serves as a gateway to the Pilliga, and attracts bird watchers and other nature lovers.
The Baradine Memorial Hall is the most impressive building in town, and sits at the east end of the main street. The motto above the entry reads “Fidelis ad urnam” which I think means ‘faithful to the tomb’ – but I’m happy to be corrected on that!
While the economics of running a business in a small town are challenging, evidenced by a number of empty shops, in a positive development since I was last in Baradine a few years ago, a new cafe/gallery has opened. I’m happy to report that the English Breakfast tea, served in a proper teapot with a china cup, was delicious, as was the raisin toast I had. So delicious that I was very tempted, on my last day, to drive the 50km back to Baradine for some more!