All About Dorrigo
With it's roots firmly planted in forestry, dairying and potato cropping, Dorrigo now looks to a bright future across a diverse range of industries.
The village invites you, and your family, to join other like-minded passionate, community centred country folk in new exciting enterprises in food security, allied health services, and the visitor economy.
Dorrigo was settled relatively late, compared to other parts of the New England, as the Plateau was heavily timbered and access to the coast was impeded due to the very steep Dorrigo Mountain. Nonetheless, with the passing of a piece of “Dorrigo specific” State legislation, land was made available for subdivision on the basis that all timber was to be removed. The regulated small size of allotments was designed to encourage the establishment of dairy farms which would support approximately 40 head, enough to sustain a family.
In its heyday, there were 42 functioning timber mills on the Dorrigo Plateau supplying logs and sawn timber of exceptional quality. The area was renowned for its red cedar, tallowwood, rosewood and many other valuable construction species. This timber was moved down the escarpment and transported by ship through the Bellinger Valley to the coast and south to the growing colony.
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Dorrigo is well serviced by educational facilities from pre-school to year 12. There are several active play groups and the certified preschool. Mt St John’s Catholic Primary and Dorrigo Primary as well as a number of outlying primary schools are feeder schools to co-educational Dorrigo High which has an enrolment of around 200 students from year 7 to 12. With its small class sizes and an innovative teaching curriculum Dorrigo High is able to offer a diversity of options and educational experiences up to year 12. The High School has modern facilities, a diversity of staffing and a recently upgraded Science and Trade Training Centre and an enviable scholastic and sporting prowess.
The local town library has internet and WiFi access.
Coffs Harbour and Armidale have private schools, universities and TAFE.
There is a tight control of sub-division of land on the Plateau. However, there is adequate sub-divided land suitable for housing within the township as well as in the small villages of North Dorrigo, Dundurrabin, Tyringham and Megan. As a reflection of its past, a lot of Dorrigo housing is of the “older style” workman's cottages, which gives the town architectural interest character and charm. The more recent subdivisions are typical modern Australian homes.
Dorrigo has a 6 bed hospital with a 24 hour A & E Department. The hospital is attached to an aged care facility. Dorrigo has an ambulance service with five paramedics . Within the hospital grounds there are a number of allied health professionals and outreach health services such as physiotherapists, community nurses, women's health clinic, podiatry, occupational therapy, mental health, psychiatry and drug rehabilitation.
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Although the largest single employers are State and Local Government, other leading employers are found in Agriculture, and Hospitality and Tourism service sectors.
The majority of businesses on the plateau are micro or SME and typically run as family businesses or partnership employing 1 to 5 people.
The natural environment is a very important facet of life on the Plateau. There are 9 national parks as well as numerous well maintained picnic grounds and reserves. At Dorrigo’s doorstep is Dorrigo National Park and Rainforest Centre . This park was classified World Heritage in 1986. Dangar Falls Reserve is easily accessible and is within walking distance of the village with outstanding display of rare vegetation and spectacular geology, as well as picnic and bbq facilities.
Dorrigo is amongst the wettest part of NSW, our creeks run full and our grass stays green!!
Some 'at a glance' information about Dorrigo
- Population: village: 950, total on the plateau: 1523
- Median House Price: $245,000
- Climate—Summer: min. 15, max. 25 Winter: min 5 max 15
- Average Annual Rainfall 2087mm occurring over 156 days per year. Summer dominant.
- Elevation: 762m
Dorrigo is located on the edge of the New England Tablelands, with the escarpment literally at its doorstep. Usually considered to be a part of the mid North coast, many residents also have close affiliations to the tablelands where they seek access to big city services.
It is located on Main Road 78, one of the three arterial roads linking the Coast and is a gateway to both the New England and the Mid North Coast.
Transport - by road to New England Highway (1hr) or to Pacific Highway (45minutes)
- by rail. Nearest rail is at Urunga which is serviced by the XPT twice daily.
- by air. The nearest commercial airports are at Coffs Harbour—50 minutes car trip or Armidale 90 minutes. Both these cities have regular jet services.
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