Cobar is a lively and engaging community in the heart of NSW. The Shire’s prosperity is built around the thriving mining sector (copper, lead, silver, zinc, gold) and prosperous pastoral industry, both of which are strongly supported by local retail and health services.
Cobar Shire is situated at the crossroads of the Barrier Highway and the Kidman Way and has excellent road, rail and air links to most of Australia’s capital cities. With an area of 45,609 square kilometres, the Shire is approximately two-thirds the size of Tasmania.
Cobar Shire is home to 4,650 people. Most of the population is concentrated in the town of Cobar, which is the service centre for the surrounding district which includes Cubba, Tindarey, Nymagee, Gilgunnia, Eremerang, Euabalong and Mt Hope.
The distance from Cobar to Sydney is 750 km, which is an eight-hour journey by car or a two-hour plane trip. A coach service is available to Dubbo, 300 km away, with connecting train and air services, along with chartered flights available.
Climate: Winter 15.5° Summer 33.5°
Cobar is friendly and welcoming and offers a range of cultural and sporting activities for residents. The town boasts excellent sporting facilities including a magnificent 18-hole sand green golf course, two bowling clubs, beautifully maintained fields, modern Olympic swimming pool complex including heated rehabilitation pool and water slide, barbecue and beach volleyball facilities.
Cobar has a skate park suitable to all skill levels and bikes, boards and scooters and is adjacent to the Cobar Youth and Fitness Centre. The centre has squash courts, gym, sauna, basketball stadium, dance area and drop in centre. Junior clubs are very strong in the town, particularly for Little Athletics, soccer, cricket, football, netball and dance and martial arts. There are shooting ranges, walking paths, and large common areas for groups such as the Fergie Tractor group, the Auto club and the Fuel Burners car group.
There are regular market days in town and the Arts Council supports a strong cultural element in the community which includes an annual Art and Photography Exhibition.There is a range of cuisines, from Thai to Italian, Chinese and Australian, as well as takeaway options. Venues are all family-friendly with a relaxed atmosphere.
Cobar has a range of housing options. There are ample rural residential blocks, properties of all sizes in town and established dwellings with a range of sizes and options including units. The average cost to rent a house is $270 while the median sale price to buy is $300,000 for a four-bedroom home. Cobar also has well-established commercial and industrial sectors with serviced blocks available.
Cobar’s main industries are agriculture and mining. There are six mines in the area and Cobar’s service centre is heavily reliant on these sectors. There is a strong industrial network in Cobar including tradespeople, equipment hire and labour force. The health and government sector also offers strong employment in Cobar, including administration personnel and professionals. Cobar businesses are supported by the Cobar Business Association which runs promotional activities, training, the Cobar Quids program and the annual business awards.
There is a number of education providers in Cobar ranging from early childhood to further education for adults. St John’s Catholic Primary School is run through Catholic Education while the Cobar Public School and Cobar High School offer government education. There are many options for parents of young children including the Far West Family Day Care, Kubby House Child Care Centre, Cobar Preschool and Ngalli Preschool. After-school care is available through Cobar Outside of School Hours (COOSH) and the local TAFE campus offers a range of subjects.
Cobar Community Health Centre operates five days a week offering services including mental health and child health support. Cobar Primary Health Care Centre operates with a minimum of three general practitioners and a wide range of allied health care professionals, and a private doctor’s practice. There is an excellent range of allied health services including radiography, podiatry, mental health services, specialist eye care and physiotherapy. Cobar District Hospital is a 29-bed acute care hospital with emergency department.
Other medical services include ambulance emergency care, optometrists, chiropractors, masseuses, dental and hearing services. There is also Meals on Wheels to assist the elderly and infirm. There are also three banks, accountants, lawyers, financial planners and bookkeepers in the town’s CBD along with gift shops, two supermarkets, a hardware store, clothing retailers, butchery, newsagency, stationery shop and variety store.
Cobar is host to a wide range of events during the year including the Miners Rescue Challenge, Cobar Races, Festival of the Miners Ghost, Grey Mardi Gras, Cobar Show, Australia Day celebrations, Christmas parade and annual Seniors and Youth Week events.
Cobar’s appeal lies in its mix of natural and manmade attractions. There is a range of unique and historic sites which celebrate Cobar’s Aboriginal heritage, mining history and beautiful landscapes.
Local activities include:
Cobar Heritage Walk
Cobar Miner’s Heritage Park
Fort Bourke Hill Lookout and New Cobar Open Cut Gold Mine
Mt Grenfell Historic Site and National Park
The Great Cobar Heritage Centre
The Old Reservoir and Devil’s Rock