Maclean, New South Wales

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New South Wales
Maclean is located in New South Wales
Coordinates 29°27′S 153°12′E / 29.450°S 153.200°E / -29.450; 153.200Coordinates: 29°27′S 153°12′E / 29.450°S 153.200°E / -29.450; 153.200
Population 5,061 (2011 census)[1]
Postcode(s) 2463
  • 658 km (409 mi) NE of Sydney
  • 46 km (29 mi) NE of Grafton
  • 18 km (11 mi) SW of Yamba
LGA(s) Clarence Valley Council
State electorate(s) Clarence
Federal Division(s) Page

Maclean is a town in Clarence Valley local government area in the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales, Australia. It is on the Clarence River and near the Pacific Highway. At the 2011 census, Maclean had a population of 2,600, Total Urban area inc Gulmarrad & Townsend districts had a population of 5,061.[1] Its industries are tourism, sugar cane production, farming and river-prawn trawling.


The popular Maclean Highland Gathering has been held for over 100 years during the Easter weekend. Participants and bands contest traditional Scottish athletic and cultural competitions, such as caber tossing, highland dancing, band competition, and bagpiping. The "Maclean, The Scottish Town In Australia Association", is a community group which was formed in 1986 under the initiative of former bank manager Mr Graham Leach, and works to promote Maclean's strong Scottish origins. The work of this committee over the years has ensured that Maclean now has national and international recognition as 'The Scottish Town' in Australia.

Many street signs are written in English and Scottish Gaelic; power poles are painted with tartan patterns; and an excellent Stone cairn has been erected in Herb Stanford Park.


Shark Creek bridge near Maclean, formerly part of the Pacific Highway

The area was originally inhabited by the Gumbaingirr or Yaygir Aboriginal peoples. Matthew Flinders landed near the mouth of the Clarence River in 1789.

Cedar cutting began in the area in the 1830s. The Maclean area was known as Rocky Mouth in the 1850s. The township was officially laid out in 1862 and named after Alexander Maclean, the Surveyor-General. The sugar industry began to develop around 1865.



  • The Daily Examiner
  • The Coastal Views
  • Clarence Valley Review

·"The Independent"


  1. ^ a b Australian Bureau of Statistics (31 October 2012). "Maclean (State Suburb)". 2011 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 3 February 2014. 

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