Another inner city gem — Tighes Hill
The suburb of Tighes Hill is an inner north-western suburb of Newcastle. Its proximity to the current Newcastle CBD as well as the expected & new CBD of Wickham makes Tighes Hill a sought after suburb for families to locate to. However, from its early beginnings, there has been a dramatic change in the look & feel of the suburb.
Settlement of the area dates back to the 1840’s when AAP Tighe acquired 2000 acres. In its early years of settlement, population was minimal until the 1870’s when industrial development led to residential development particularly after the construction of a bridge over Throsby Creek at the opening of the Ferndale Colliery in 1877. Within 3 years the suburb had a school, post office, church & stores. In 1884 a tram line was opened to Tighes Hill which extended to Mayfield in 1901.
The suburb had several names in its formative years such as Bingle Hill, Tighes Bridge and Mossvale Heights before it took its current name. From its early days, it was the site of a slaughteryard, a smelter & a coal mine before the establishment of the BHP steelworks in neighbouring Mayfield. The proximity of the steelworks to Tighes Hill made it a popular place to live.
The establishment of the TAFE in the 1930’s as well as the closeness of the BHP made it a popular area for workers & students. The large employment base of these 2 institutions allowed a commercial base to flourish & soon Tighes Hill boasted 2 pubs, a cinema, a post office, a newsagent, a chemist, supermarket, fruit & vegetable shop, 2 hairdressers, shoe & haberdashery stores as well as the famous Marina Café.
The closure of the BHP steelworks in 1999 saw the decline of the commercial centre as well as the suburb’s attractiveness as a place to live. All bar one of the businesses have closed with the commercial buildings being reborn as student accommodation.
Tighes Hill still boasts many turn of the century timber cottages which create character & flavour for the suburb. Nowadays, Tighes Hill has become a trendy inner city suburb with a large influx of young professionals & families looking for an inner city lifestyle at the affordable end of town. The gentrification of Tighes Hill is on in earnest & a drive around the various streets will provide evidence of this gentrification.
The Garis Group
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