Archaeological monitoring at Denbigh Farm Historic Entry Drive, Camden

Peter Gray Special Projects on behalf of AV Jennings

Eco Logical Australia undertook an archaeological monitoring program on the Denbigh Farm Historic Entry Drive in Camden for AV Jennings. We had previously prepared an Archaeological Assessment, Archaeological Research Design and Section 140 Permit Application under the Heritage Act 1977 (NSW) for the subject site.

The Denbigh homestead is of State significance for its large collection of early, intact and rare farm buildings and associated plantings sitting within an intact rural landscape. The historic driveway to the homestead lies outside the NSW State Heritage Register curtilage of Denbigh and is no longer used for access to Denbigh itself.

Archaeological monitoring and recording identified an early driveway surface. The lowest layer of the access drive at the dam comprising of cobblestones and compact earth is likely to date to the earliest phase of Charles Hook’s 1,100 acre property (1812-1826). The upper layer contained clay fill and is likely to have been deposited after the purchase of the adjacent Long Bush property in 1895.

The excavations informed part of the development of the Arcadian Hills Estate of Cobbitty by AV Jennings. Most of the access drive outside of the State Heritage Register curtilage of Denbigh remains in situ and will be conserved and interpreted within an open space park in the central portion of the new residential estate.