Adelaide River & Batchelor
townships of Adelaide River and Batchelor are steeped in history, from the
early Chinese market, gardens and military presence during WWII, to the
discovery of uranium and the mining at Rum Jungle. The area was originally
inhabited by the Kungarakan and Warai Aboriginal clans, the first Europeans to
travel through the area were members of the Goyder survey expedition in 1869.
The first settlement here was not established until 1870, a base for workers on
the construction of the Overhead Telegraph Line.
Adelaide River Township situated on the Stuart Highway 112km
south of Darwin, offers a warm welcome to travellers. The township came to
prominence following completion of construction of the Overland Telegraph Line,
followed by a hotel, a police outpost and a railway station. The town became a
popular overnight stopover for travellers and prospectors en-route to Pine Creek
following the discovery of gold there in 1971.
From 1939, with the build-up of WWII military activity, the
town took on a major role as the location for a huge military base, with the 119
Australian General Hospital, army camps and thousands of service personnel
stationed in the town and surrounding areas.
Following the bombing of Darwin in 1942, Australian and
American military headquarters were relocated from Darwin to Adelaide River
township. The town is now the site of the third largest war cemetery in
Australia, the resting place for some 63 civilians and 434 service personnel.
Adelaide River Township offers a range of accommodation,
including two caravan parks. Nearby, Mount Bundy Station offers everything from
home-stay bed and breakfast to budget far-stay accommodation.
Enjoy a refreshing swim at Robin Falls, located along Dorat
Road off the Stuart Highway near the Adelaide River township.
The cascading falls can be reached after a short walk through
scenic bush surrounds. A place to get away from it all and go swimming.
Adelaide River War Cemetery
River War Cemetery lies along Memorial Drive in Adelaide River.
The War Cemetery was built during World War II for the burial
of Servicemen and Women. There are 434 burials in total, 14 airman Royal Air
Force, 12 unidentified men of the British Merchant Navy, 7 Australian Merchant
Navy men, 1 Canadian Army soldier and 400 from the Australian Forces.
The War cemetery adjoins the Civil Cemetery where 63 civilians are buried. Among
the civilians are nine Post Office workers who were killed on 19 February 1942
in the bombing of Darwin.