Newstead is a town in Victoria, Australia, situated along the Loddon River.
- Area:46.686 km2
- Elevation:225 m
- Local Government Area:Mount Alexander Shire Council
Newstead is a town in Victoria, Australia, situated along the Loddon River.It is in the Shire of Mount Alexander local government area.At the 2006 census, Newstead had a population of 572 in the 2016 census. Newstead has many festivals and folk events and is in the centre of the golden triangle, close to many tourist attractions and events.
Although Newstead is located in the Victorian Goldfields, the settlement began as a crossing-place on the Loddon River (known as “Mingus’s crossing-place”) on the way to the nearby Castlemaine and Mount Alexander diggings.A very early business at the crossing-place was a “refreshment tent” operated by Thomas Jones (probably established in about 1853-4).The refreshment tent, called the “Bullock Drivers’ Home”, was primarily a sly-grog shop (for which Jones was charged on several occasions), but also incorporated “a bakehouse, butcher's shop, three-stalled stable, stockyard, and about a quarter of an acre of well-stocked garden ground”.By mid-year 1855 the partnership of James David Jones and Frederick Beard (businessmen from Castlemaine) had completed and opened the Newstead Hotel at Mingus’ crossing-place (with Jones as the publican license-holder).Soon after the hotel was opened their local business rival, the sly-grog seller Thomas Jones, erected a bridge over the Loddon “at his own expense” (which was subsequently destroyed by flood waters in September 1855, within a month or two of being built).The locality began to be referred to as the Newstead Crossing (or simply Newstead) after the name of the hotel.By August 1856 Jones and Beard of the Newstead Hotel had constructed more substantial bridge over the Loddon River.A Post Office at Newstead was opened on 1 August 1857. The first Postmaster was Mr. J. Day.In about June 1858 district farmers and landholders formed the Newstead Agricultural Society which held competitive ploughing matches and organised annual agricultural shows highlighting district produce and livestock.The Society flourished during the 1860s and early 1870s, guided by its secretary, Andrew Kirwan.The Newstead Magistrates' Court closed on 1 November 1981, not having been visited by a Magistrate since 1980.
# Things to do