Brown's Waterhole

Brown’s Waterhole is located in what is today called the Lane Cove National Park, but in Dharug is known as the Turrumburra River.  The site was selected for inclusion in this research project because it is both a meeting place and a place of ancestry, for me through my four-times great Frances (Fanny) Randall-Aiken-Brown. Prior to colonisation, its role as a meeting place involved two neighbourly Dharug communities: the Turrumburragal (remembered in the suburban name, Turramurra), and the Wallumattagal (place and people of the Wallumai, the Snapper Fish) today covering the areas of Ryde, Hunters Hill, Marsfield, Boronia Park, Putney and Eastwood). Today, it is a meeting place for local councils: Ryde, Kuringai and Hornsby. It is also a place of storying, with Presences carved into the landscape, and 19th and 20th century storying written the records. It’s naming follows the colonial timber-getting industry which was pursued by descendants of Fanny Randall and her partner, William Brown. As such it marks the meeting of people from enormously different cultures, both seeking survival through the landscape. Today, and through the research, and alliances with others who are caring for the well-being of the river and its bio-diversities, BWH is the site of regeneration and return of cultural fire as a mitigation approach against the likelihood of mega fires in urban environments due to climate changing challenges. As such it is the activation of the site for the protection of urban communities through Dharug biocultural knowledges and practices.

© Jo Rey 2022

We always pay our respect to the Elders past present and our future elders within our community, our elders have smoothed the path for many of our people and we should always remember and respect what they have lived through and shared with us.