A project from the National Trust of WA
A self-guided drive trail between the Perth Hills and Western Australia’s Eastern Goldfields. Go with the Flow. Follow the water to discover more about the audacious goldfields water supply scheme and Engineer CY O’Connor.
“Future generations, I am quite certain will think of us and bless us for our far seeing patriotism, and it will be said of us, as Isaiah said of old, ‘They made a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert”
If you decide to take backroads from Mundaring, rather than Great Eastern Highway, you might like to take a break at Wooroloo Reserve to stretch your legs and see an artwork inspired by the pipeline.
The site, with its picnic facilities and playground, is located on the former railway reserve. The location of the former line can easily be seen and, while it has been quiet since the line was closed in 1966, it is not difficult to imagine the large noisy steam locomotives passing by.
In 1841 a reserve was surveyed for the future townsite of “Wooriloo”, but the town never eventuated. Six years later the road to Northam was surveyed and a well constructed to supply travellers with water. It was not until 1875, however, that 100 acres around the well was declared a reserve known as “Wooriloo Well”.
The area was originally settled by the Byfield brothers. John was the first to take up land, arriving in 1878 to establish a vineyard. His brother James, noting the impressive stands of Jarrah and Wandoo, later joined him and, in 1891, they established a steam saw mill which became the district centre.
By 1893 the site, then known as Byfield’s Mill, had become a stopping place on the Eastern Railway. In 1897 an area of land west and south of the mill was reserved for the township, finally to be known as Wooroloo, and orchardists and farmers were soon attracted to the area.
The State tuberculosis sanatorium was built at Wooroloo in 1912 to take advantage of the cool mountain air. It later became a general hospital but closed in 1970. The old sanatorium buildings are now part of the Wooroloo Prison Farm.
Art works help us see things from a different point of view. The art work at Wooroloo Reserve reflects what the pipeline, or more specifically water, has done for those people who have forged an existence out of the interior landscape beyond the immediate confines of the city limits and its comforts.
The piece has 3 separate elements representing the city (domestic and industrial), the country (both primary and secondary industry) and the element that draws these two together – water. Each of the components draws on familiar visual references.
The artists were Peter Dailey, Stuart Elliot and Michelle Elliot who worked with the children of the Wooroloo Primary School.
Click on any map section or place below to discover The Golden Pipeline.