Peterborough is in the mid north of South Australia, at the 2011 census the town had a population of 1,486.
It was originally named Petersburg after the landowner however was one of 69 places in South Australia renamed in 1917 due to anti-German sentiments during World War I.
It was a major railway hub during the steam era with more than 70 trains a day passing through the town by 1898. This number had increased to over 100 by 1923.
Unfortunately the railway era has long gone, although it has been well preserved at the Steam Town Heritage Rail Centre, which is well worth a visit.
The Indian Pacific passenger rail service that operates between Sydney on the Pacific Ocean, and Perth on the Indian Ocean, is one of the few truly transcontinental trains in the world. It still passes through Peterborough.
The Town has a number of heritage-listed sites, including:
- Bishop’s Palace and Convent
- Police Station, Cells and Courthouse
- Town Hall
- Peterborough Hotel
- Capitol Theatre
- Gold Battery and Office
- Railway Museum
There is an interesting history walk that takes about 90 minutes to complete. It takes in many of the town’s historical buildings and heritage sites near the Main Street. There are signs explaining the significance of each site. You can download the History Walk Brochure and map here.
During my last visit the locals were talking up the recent influx of Adelaide retirees who were “tree changing” to the wheat belt town. It is a great place to spend a couple of days on the drive from Pt Augusta to Broken Hill via the Barrier Highway… Peterborough is in the mid north of South Australia.