Almost 60 years ago the President of Colo Shire, Councillor Matheson, MBE and councillors held an official luncheon in the School of Arts at Wilberforce to celebrate the achievements of Colo Shire over a 50-year period.
Councillors A.V. Watkins, M.A. Duffy, N.A. Powell, L.N. Smith, C.S. Ward, Shire Clerk Howard James, Deputy Shire Clerk R.A. Dasey, Shire Engineer S.F.S. Pollard and health and building inspector W.R. Roach enjoyed the lunch when Colo Shire was one of many rural areas formed under regulations contained in the Local Government Act passed in NSW in 1905.
In mid-1906, Henry Wilson, Edward Bowd, Cyril Tuckerman, John Dunstan and Jonathan Gosper (who died just before the Council election) were appointed to administer a temporary council until elections for councillors could be held on November 24, 1906. It was decided that Council meetings and the headquarters of the Shire would be in Wilberforce.
James Bligh Johnston was appointed returning officer for the election and parish maps were supplied to the police in Wilberforce, North Richmond and St Albans so that a list of electors could be prepared before the election.
A room and printing press were rented from Mrs Lockhart, who operated a boarding house in an old inn almost opposite where the Council Chambers would later be built in 1910.
Councillors elected for each of the three ridings were Arthur Anderson and William Henry Gosper (A Riding, 214 voters), Henry Wilson and Edward Bowd (B Riding, 586 voters), John Lamrock and James Edward McMahon (C Riding, 228 voters), with John Lamrock named as president.
Bank accounts were opened with the Commercial Banking Company of Sydney, Windsor Branch, and the first loan was for 350 pounds with an interest rate of six per cent. At the time, each councillor had to sign a personal guarantee with the bank to repay the loan if Council defaulted.
Cecil Icely was appointed Shire Clerk and Mr A. Adams was appointed Shire Engineer. The engineer’s duties were shared fortnightly with Erina Shire and he was required to cover his own travelling costs, office rent and equipment. The area covered was huge: just over 3100 square kilometres with 80 per cent of the area considered unrateable land.
The land stretched from north of Putty to Castlereagh and from Mount Bell to Mount Manning, from the junction of Wollemi Creek and the Colo River to the parishes of Wollangambe, Irvine, St Albans, Wallambine and Lockyer, Mount Wilson, the Grose River, down to Yarramundi and the right banks of the Nepean/Hawkesbury River all the way to Wisemans Ferry crossing.
Although land was transferred to Blue Mountains City Council on more than one occasion and boundaries changed over the years, the area controlled by Colo Shire was still 2646 square kilometres in 1960.
Colo Shire Council operated for 75 years until amalgamation with Windsor Municipal Council in 1981, forming Hawkesbury Shire Council. City status was then granted to Hawkesbury City Council in 1989.
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