Lightning ridge information centre,citizen preparedness review,communication during a crisis - Plans Download

Lightning Ridge is an interesting and unique opal mining town in the north-western corner of the Australian state of New South Wales.
The Lightning Ridge region provides many visual experiences that can't be had elsewhere in Australia.
Lightning Ridge is easily accessible on a sealed road about four kilometres east of the Castlereagh Highway, approximately 75 km north of Walgett, the next nearest town.
A vehicle is required to visit the many interesting out of town sightseeing locations such as Grawin with 'The Glengarry Hilton' and 'Sheepyard Inn'.
Water Theme Park, Gem Street (Adjacent to the Lightning Ridge Olympic Pool), ? (02) 6829 0150, [3].
Go fossicking (noodling) after enquiring at the Visitor Information Centre as to where it is possible to do so.
Lightning Ridge Bowling Club, Agate Street (next to the Telecom tower), ? 02 6829 0408, [4].
Lightning Ridge Bowling Club, Agate Street (next to the Telecom tower), ? 02 6829 0408, [5]. Wallangulla Motel, Morilla Street, Lightning Ridge NSW 2834 (opposite the Telecom tower), ? (02) 6829 0542, [6]. Opal Caravan Park, 142 Pandora Street (1.6 km from corner of Opal and Pandora Street, on Pandora), ? 02 6829 4884, [7]. Take yourself on a Car Door Explorer trip after obtaining a map from the Visitor Information Centre. Text is available under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0, images are available under various licenses, see each image for details.
Lightning Ridge is unlike the other major opal centres - Coober Pedy, Andamooka, White Cliffs - in the sense that it is accessible and consequently it attracts over 80,000 tourists, visitors and itinerants each year. Lightning Ridge is known to be the only place in Australia, and one of the few places in the world, where the highly prized black opal is found. Origin of NameInitially the settlement was known as Nettleton's Hill because Charles Nettleton discovered the opals in the district in 1902. One of the primary reasons for visiting Lightning Ridge is to buy wholesale opals and, if you have a little spare cash, to buy the rare and valuable black opals. The Walk-In Mine at Bald Hill has been operating since the 1960s and is recognised as the town's oldest tourist attraction.


Located on 3 Mile Road is a strange vernacular exhibition of over 500 carvings and paintings.
The Goondee Keeping Place, located at 90 Pandora Street, is an Aboriginal museum with a range of interesting local Aboriginal artefacts on display. Known variously as the Universe Observatory, the Astronomer's Castle and the Astronomer's Monument this rough cement "castle" is symbolic of the eccentricity of residents in Lightning Ridge. Started in 1985 by Italian-born miner Vittorio Stefanato, known as Amigo, this is really a folly. If you want to guide yourself around Lightning Ridge there are a unique quartet of "car door tours" - the Blue Car Door, Green Car Door, Red Car Door and Yellow Car Door - which take in different aspects of the town.
The Lightning Ridge Bore Baths, which are the result of an artesian bore sunk by local graziers in the 1960s, provide a permanent supply of warm mineralised waters bubbling up from 900 m below the surface. History* Prior to the arrival of Europeans the area around Lightning Ridge was the home to the Kamilaroi Aboriginal people of northern New South Wales.
Visitor InformationLightning Ridge Visitor Information Centre, Morilla Street, tel: (02) 6829 1670. Australia wide, the Bush Inn in New Norfolk, Tasmania, is the oldest continual licensed Hotel. Australian Traveller magazine has judged that "The Ridge" is in the 53rd position in the listing of 100 of Australia’s Best Towns. The first level is 11 metres underground with images carved and painted in the sandstone walls and pillars. The Wallangulla Motel consists of 42 self-contained rooms with air conditioning, direct dial phones, colour TVs and Austar. As a town it is the most bizarre, and compelling, combination of rural sophistication (the main street is sealed, curbed and gutted and has rows of regular shops - and there is a lot of money around) and the wildly eccentric - gasp at the house made from bottles and the rough cement "castle" of the Astronomer's Monument; surrounded by a moonscape of mullock heaps under which literally hundreds of obsessed miners search and dig for the black opals which have made the town famous. This means that it has a a number of good quality motels, a rich array of souvenir and gift shops, some good restaurants, and a veneer of civilisation designed to meet the needs of visitors and fossickers who come for the winter months and spend their time digging for opals. The black opal is prized not only because of its rarity but because it has carbon and iron oxide trace elements which produce a very dark stone with hints of blue, green and red.
It was later renamed by the New South Wales Lands Department as Warrangulla but after World War I it was named Lightning Ridge.
The local tourism people advise that the serious purchaser should spend a couple of days visiting all the wholesalers and retailers in the town.


There are daily tours and a showroom where visitors can buy set and unset opals, tel: (02) 6829 0247. Created by local opal miner, Ron Canlin, it is a series of works carved out of the tunnels where he has been digging for opals.
It has a collection of Aboriginal tools and weapons and information about the local mission which closed in 1930. It was built between 1983 and 1998 by a Polish miner, Alex Szperlak, to celebrate his fellow countryman, the astronomer Copernicus. The tour includes a visit to the Astronomer's Castle, Amigo's Castle and Fred Bodel's Opal Mine, all of which are not usually open to the public.
The Red Car Door Tour, for example, includes the more permanent and exotic buildings including the Ridge Castle and the very distinctive Astronomers Castle. The Kamilaroi believed that the opals were the result of a huge wheel of fire which fell to earth and sprayed the countryside with brilliant coloured stones.
It is claimed that the name dates back to the 1870s when a farmer, his dog and 600 sheep were all killed by lightning.
Their argument is not about getting a bargain but about recognising that no two opals are the same and it may be that you will need a day to find the opal you want.
The website gives a good idea of the displays when it records: "The Egyptian chamber has humorous hieroglyphics and is a replica of an Egyptian tomb. They are open 24 hours a day and it is a special experience to sit in the spa and gaze up at the vast outback skies. The Lands Department later gazetted it as Warrangulla and it was known as that until after World War I when it became Lightning Ridge.
The most sensible approach is to go to the Visitor Information Centre and ask for a comprehensive list of the places in town selling opals. Atlas holds the world while Adam supports the roof of the entrance to the working mine - another feature of the tour.
One insists it is "regarded by many as the best opal display in the ridge" and another as "one of the best collections of solid Lightning Ridge opal anywhere in Australia." A handy guide is the section in the Lightning Ridge and the Walgett Region brochure which explains opals and the terms used by the industry.



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