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Charlton, VIC

Located on the Avoca River it describes itself as 'the friendly river town'

Charlton is a tiny town of tree-lined streets, situated on the banks of the Avoca River. Large grain silos indicate the dominance of wheat, oats and barley as vital crops in the district. The Charlton feedlot is the largest beef feedlot in Victoria. Wool and fat lambs also contribute to the local economy. Today it is a pleasant place to pause for a relaxed break. There is a purpose-designed Travellers Rest and visitors enjoy walking along the banks of the Avoca River or visiting the Wooroonook Lakes.


Charlton is located 245 km north-west of Melbourne via the Calder Highway and 118 m above sea-level.


Origin of Name

The first European settlers, Robert Cay and William Kaye, established the 'Charlton' station in 1848, naming it after a town (now a suburb of London) near Greenwich and Woolwich on the River Thames.


Things to See and Do

Travellers Rest
The Traveller's Rest is a purpose-designed resting place located in the centre of town. It is designed for the traveller with picnic facilities, a wishing well, gazebo, views of the river, a footbridge across the river and overnight stop facilities which the locals like to describe as an en-suite caravan park. It has parking for cars, caravans and buses and excellent toilet facilities.

Charlton Golden Grain Museum
Located at 1 High Street, the Charlton Golden Grains Museum contains a collection of over 3,000 items relating to local history. It has displays on local sport,  war, agriculture, industry and medicine. It is located in the former Mechanics' Institute (1882) and next door to the shire offices, and is open on Sundays from 11.00 am - 3.00 pm and  by appointment, tel: Carolyn 0418 361 971, Sue 0407 140 336 and Glenda 0417 801 771.For more information check out http://charltongoldengrainsmuseum.webs.com.

Rex Theatre
The town has an impressive Art Deco theatre which is used both for movies and live performances. It is operated by volunteers and shows movies on Saturday, Sunday and Tuesday. It hosts the Charlton Film Festival each February. For more information check out http://www.rextheatre.org.au.

Charlton Courthouse Gallery
Located at 8 Camp Street, the Charlton Court House Gallery, as the name suggests, is located in the Court House which dates from 1883 and has been carefully restored. It stopped operating as a Court House in 1982 but the main features have remained intact. Of particular note are the judge's bench and the crazed ceiling. It is now a gallery with a semi-permanent exhibition of photographs and periodic exhibitiions by visiting artists. It is open by appointment. Tel: Carolyn - 0418 361 971.


Other Attractions in the Area

Wooroonook Lakes
Located 14 km west of Charlton are the Wooroonook Lakes which are popular with the locals and ideal for swimming, fishing and boating. There are camping (10 powered sites) and picnic facilities and the lake is stocked with redfin and trout.

Wychitella Nature Conservation Reserve
Located 25 km south-east of Charlton, the Wychitella Nature Conservation Reserve, which covers 6,905 ha and is an ideal place to see the nests of the rare mallee fowl, offers camping facilities, and is renowned as an excellent place for bird watching. Check out http://parkweb.vic.gov.au/explore/parks/wychitella-n.c.r..



* Prior to the arrival of Europeans the district was home to the Jaara Aborigines. 

* The first European settlers were Robert Cay and William Kaye who established the 'Charlton' station in 1848.

* An inn was erected in 1863. 

* A bridge was built across the Avoca River in 1867. 

* The East Charlton Post Office was opened in 1876. That year saw the publication of the Tribune - a twice weekly local newspaper.

* In 1879 another town named Charlton changed its name to Chute and the single word Charlton replaced East and West Charlton.

* In 1879 the Vale of Avoca hotel was opened for business.

* In the 1870s the large holdings were broken up and opened to selectors who established grain-growing. 

* Two flour mills were consequently built in the 1870s.

* In the 1950s levee banks were built along the Avoca River.

* In September, 2010 the town was flooded in spite of the levee banks.

* The town was flooded to record levels in January, 2011.


Visitor Information

Visitor Information is available at the Buloke Shire Offices, 1 High St, tel: (03) 5478 0173 or at the Charlton Travellers Rest Caravan Park.


Useful Websites

There is a useful website at https://www.travelvictoria.com.au/charlton which offers information about accommodation and eating.

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