Wollondilly Shire CouncilCommunity profile

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Appin - Cataract - Darkes Forest

About the profile areas

The 2016 Estimated Resident Population for Appin - Cataract - Darkes Forest is 2,732, with a population density of 0.14 persons per hectare.

Location and boundaries

Appin - Cataract - Darkes Forest is bounded by Campbelltown City in the north, Wollongong City in the east, Wingecarribee Shire in the south, and the locality of Wilton, Cascade Creek and the Cataract and Nepean Rivers in the west.

Name origin

Appin is named after a village in Scotland. Darkes Forest is thought to be named after Surveyor Darke, who was in charge of constructing the Illawarra Road.

Settlement history

Settlement of the area dates from 1811 when the first land grants were made. Land was used mainly for farming, including wheat, barley and vegetable growing. The township of Appin was soon established, being one of the first in Wollondilly Shire, and the staging post for many exploration journeys. Growth was relatively minimal until the 1880s when the Cataract Dam was built, spurring an influx of workers and their families to the area. The population increased significantly during the post-war years, spurred by the opening of coal mines in the 1960s and 1970s. The population increased during the 1990s as new dwellings were added to the area. The population was relatively stable between 2001 and 2011, a result of little change in dwelling stock and the average number of persons living in each dwelling.

Land use

Appin - Cataract - Darkes Forest is a mainly rural area, with an urban centre and some industrial areas in Appin.

Major features

Major features of the area include Dharawal State Conservation Area, Cataract Dam, NSW Sport Aircraft Club (Wedderburn Airport), Appin Colliery, West Cliff Colliery, Cataract Scout Park, Appin Way Greyhound Track, Macarthur District Motor Cycle Sportsmen & Motocross Tracks, A J Brown Reserve, Appin Park, Appin Sportsground, William Woods Park, Kennedy Creek Walk and one school.

Included areas

Parts of the localities of Cataract and Darkes Forest are located in Wollongong City.