Leading Light or Beacon Towers

Newcastle has its very own castle turret on top of The Hill in the form of the Leading Light Tower or Beacon Tower. It was one of two built to assist captains in bringing their ships safely into the port. The coast around Newcastle is littered with hundreds of shipwrecks and the pair of towers built in 1865/1866 helped to increase the safety of vessels entering the Hunter River.

The Wallis Album

In 2012, a previously unknown album of drawings from 1818, including landscapes and portraits of Aboriginal people from the Newcastle region, returned to Newcastle for a brief exhibition by the State Library of NSW. The ‘Wallis Album’ was compiled by Captain James Wallis, the Commandant of Newcastle from 1816 to 1818, in collaboration with one of the best know early colonial artists, the convicted forger Joseph Lycett.