Northey’s Store is located towards the northern end of Clarke Street, in the area which formed part of the busy centre of the town during the 1870s gold boom.
The property currently associated with the store includes Lots 8, 9, 10 and 11 of Section 22 of Hill End. The existing building is principally located on Lot 10.
A plan included in the Certificate of Title indicates that Lots 9, 10 and 11 were originally surveyed as part of Belmore Street which was planned to continue across Tambaroora Street to Clarke Street. Early photographs show that by 1872 a number of slab and bark houses had been built on this section of Belmore Street. One of these buildings could have been Peter English’s tailor shop. A saddlery appears to have been located on Lot 11, which later became Ackland’s store.
The lots which comprise the present property known as Northey’s Store contained the following businesses in 1872.
- Peter English’s tailor shop.
- Thomas Ackland’s first cabinet making shop.
- The Colonial Wine and Coffee Rooms.
The present building was constructed on the site of the Colonial Wine and Coffee Rooms in 1873.
The original owners of each lot were as follows:
- Lot 8 – Granted on 20th August 1872 to John Smith.
- Lot 9 – Granted on 8th March 1876 to Joseph Law Stokes, Bailiff of Hill End.
- Lot 10 – Granted on 21st August 1874 to Helene Petersen.
- Lot 11 – Granted on 15th May 1882 to Thomas Ackland.
Thomas Ackland paid ?1/16/3 for Lot 11. This location is generally recognised as the first place at which he conducted business in Hill End.
The store appears to have been operated by Robert Northey over an extended period of time. Robert built Northey’s Store and operated it until his retirement. He died in Mudgee on 7th November 1917.
Walter and Betty Warry conducted a mixed business in the shop from around 1925. They supplied the town with fruit, vegetables, smallgoods, cakes etc. Walter Warry also operated a motor truck service to and from Bathurst carrying goods for his shop as well as chaff, grain and other items for individual customers. The Warrys eventually closed the business and retired to their grazing property Cannonball, south west of Hill End.
Bruce and Betty Goodwin purchased the dilapidated building in the late 1950s for £40/-/-. They repaired the building and made it safe.
The property was acquired by the National Parks and Wildlife Service in 1972. From 1974 to 1976 a series of works were done to the building to make it suitable for occupation by the community nurse. The community nurse occupied the southern shop space and used the accommodation which was developed upstairs. The northen shop was leased separately to Barbara Kay of Falconbridge for the sale of antique furniture. During the 1980s Malcolm Drinkwater of Hill End operated the Hillend Gold Shoppe from the northern end of the premises. Gaye and Jim Shanahan operated the store at Northeys. They ran a camping and fossicking store that also sold local gold, a luxury holiday apartment and a pop up space from the unique building.