The Rose Cottage

Step back to a time when Australia's first settlers battled to survive in a harsh land.

See how they lived by visiting historic Rose Cottage each Sunday between 10.00am and 4.00pm.

Cost of entry:
a gold coin.

In 1809 Thomas Rose bought from William Mackay part of a 30 acre farm a short distance down-stream from Laurel Farm and on higher ground. 

 This became the focus of the Rose family life and it was here that Thomas and Jane built, around 1811, the house that is now known as "Rose Cottage" Wilberforce 

 It is recognised as Australia’s oldest known timber slab house situated on it’s original site. The family occupied the cottage continuously until 1961.

Rose Cottage

Ownership was subsequently transferred to Hawkesbury City Council. Bill McLaughlin actually had the vision to acquire the site and built the "Australian Pioneer Village" now known as Hawkesbury Heritage Farm around it - using a number of old buildings from around the Hawkesbury district.

A Permanent Conservation Order, first proposed by the Rose family in 1977 was finally granted on 14 August 1985. 

However, on 17th January 1993, the Council returned the cottage to the Society by the transfer of the deeds for a nominal $1.

Since 1994 extensive conservation work has been undertaken by the Society under the guidance of conservation architects in order to maintain the cottage in a viable condition. 

The result of all this activity is a building and grounds that would please it’s original owners and occupiers.

Early Cottage


The Cottage during restoration
March 1995

Restored Cottage


The Cottage on Open Day
March 1996

Visiting Rose Cottage

The Australiana Pioneer Village is now open on a regular basis an you can visit their website for more details at