We acknowledge, that we are here today on the land of the Guringai people. The Guringai people are the traditional owners of this land, on which we work and live. We recognise their continuing connection to land, water and community. We pay respect to Elders past, present and emerging.
The earliest land explorations were Aboriginal tracks. For thousands of years prior to the arrival of Europeans, The Guringai people had rich food, language, and spiritual rituals along with laws and connection to the land.
From 1810 Aboriginal lands were given to pardoned convicts and free settlers. Some land was cleared for cultivation to provide timber for building and fuel. Later in the century Pittwater became a farming district for grazing sheep, cattle, horses and pigs and producing butter, milk, vegetables, fruit and wheat.
In the 1880s, the Pittwater region was mainly accessed via ship due to being isolated. This gave access to Barrenjoey. Over time a bush road had opened, establishing better access from Manly and Narrabeen.
By the early 1880s a bridge spanned the ford at Narrabeen. Travellers by coach paused at the Rock Lily Hotel in Mona Vale (which opened in 1886), and then continued northwest to Bayview and Church Point, or northeast for Newport and Barrenjoey. By 1913 trams replaced coaches to Narrabeen. From there passengers could take a bus north. After The Spit (1925), Roseville (1925) and Sydney Harbour (1932) Bridges were opened, the Pittwater peninsula was more easily reached. Cars opened up travel. People built holiday shacks, often only occupied for a few weeks a year. (Newport, Pittwater)
Since the 1950s, Pittwater has become predominantly residential in character and is a suburban, coastal region of Sydney. Newport sits between the ocean and the Pittwater, the location and relaxed atmosphere has attracted beach and surf communities. Currently, the small community holds its charm with homey shops, slow living, greenery and friendly faces. The Newport Beach Festival has been running for over 40 years. The annual event brings together the community with live local music, international food, street entertainment, 200 stallholders, unique products, art and design.