Coonamble, New South Wales

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New South Wales
The main street of Coonamble
Coonamble is located in New South Wales
Coordinates 30°57′0″S 148°24′0″E / 30.95000°S 148.40000°E / -30.95000; 148.40000Coordinates: 30°57′0″S 148°24′0″E / 30.95000°S 148.40000°E / -30.95000; 148.40000
Population 2,750 (2016 census)[1]
Postcode(s) 2829
Elevation 180 m (591 ft)
LGA(s) Coonamble
County Leichhardt
State electorate(s) Barwon
Federal Division(s) Parkes
Mean max temp Mean min temp Annual rainfall
26.6 °C
80 °F
11.6 °C
53 °F
500.4 mm
19.7 in

Coonamble is a town on the central-western plains of New South Wales, Australia. It lies on the Castlereagh Highway north-west of Gilgandra. At the 2016 census, Coonamble had a population of 2,750.[1] It is the regional hub for wheat growing and sheep and wool. The name for the town is taken from the Gamilaraay word guna (faeces) and -bil (having a lot of).[2]

Brigidine nuns from Ireland established a school in 1883.[3] Their architecturally distinguished convent was dismantled in 1990 and transported 600 km (373 mi) to Pokolbin, where it now houses The Convent resort.[4]

Although Coonamble had been a major sheep industry region in the 1980s to 2000, there has recently been an increasing interest in cattle rearing. The summers can have temperatures reaching up to 40 °C (104 °F) and in winter, there are nights as cold as 0 °C (32 °F). Most recently Coonamble has gained media coverage due to their mass floods over Christmas 2009.


Johnny Dunn the bushranger and last of the Ben Hall gang was captured near Coonamble after a gunbattle with police at Christmas 1865.


  • In the 2016 Census, there were 2,750 people in Coonamble.
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people made up 34.2% of the population.
  • 80.0% of people were born in Australia and 83.0% of people only spoke English at home.
  • The most common responses for religion were Anglican 34.3% and Catholic 28.9%.[1]

Schools and Churches[edit]

Coonamble has three schools: Coonamble Public School, St Brigids Catholic School and Coonamble High School.

It has a Catholic and an Anglican church.


Coonamble hosts an annual rodeo that is the largest campdraft/rodeo in the Southern Hemisphere around 1,000 people annually come to compete in the rodeo with an average of about 4,000 spectators.[5]

Radio station[edit]

Coonamble has its own local radio station, 2MTM 91.9FM, which has a wide variety of music from country to modern.


The Coonamble Bears play in the Castlereagh Cup rugby league competition. The Coonamble Rams play in the Western Plains Competition.

Notable people[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Coonamble (State Suburb)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 24 August 2017.  Edit this at Wikidata
  2. ^ Giacon, John (26 March 2011). "Etymology of Yuwaalaraay Gamilaraay Bird Names". Retrieved 26 July 2013. 
  3. ^ Kerri Genovese. "The Brigidine new arrival story". Retrieved 2 April 2017. 
  4. ^ "The Convent Hunter Valley: Our history". Retrieved 2 April 2017. 
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on June 7, 2009. Retrieved September 2, 2009. 
  6. ^ Peters-Little, Frances; Luckhurst, Simon (2012). "Edward James Murray". Australian Dictionary of Biography. 18. Canberra: Australian National University. Retrieved 25 October 2017. 
  7. ^ Blackley, Leanne L. (2002). "Mary Lilly May Quirk". Australian Dictionary of Biography. 16. Canberra: Australian National University. Retrieved 25 October 2017. 
  8. ^ Farrell, Frank (1990). "Thomas James (Jim) Tyrrell". Australian Dictionary of Biography. 12. Canberra: Australian National University. Retrieved 25 October 2017. 

External links[edit]