The village of Menangle is a part of the Wollondilly Shire. The name Menangle is derived from the traditional custodians, the Tharawal People, with a word meaning a place of swamps and lagoons. With a deep history rooted in Australian agriculture, the township of Menangle was modeled on a traditional English village. Today, the landscape is changing, and the population is growing.
With a train station in the heart of the town, Menangle is well accessible by both train and road. Arriving at the station, you will be greeted with a Heritage-listed building, built-in 1863. The vibrant colour of the station against the rural backdrop contrasts beautifully and helps to convey the history of the Menangle Township.
Located next door to the train station is the Macarthur Distinct Model Railway Club. Within the shed, you will find yourself surrounded by a range of model locomotives, as well as an expansive model railway track. Looking closely, you may even spot the township of Menangle with the station and Menangle Bridge constructed.
Heading down Stevens Road, away from the station, you will pass by the Old Menangle School ground to the intersection of Menangle Road and station street. Take a walk around this green area overlooking paddocks to gain an understanding of what the schoolyard may have been like all those years ago. The school grounds were bequeathed to the township by the Macarthur’s and were an educational space for children.
Continuing up Station Street towards the intersection of Menangle Road, be sure to check out The Store Menangle. Built-in 1904 under the design of prominent architecture firm Sulman and Power. Originally, the Store was a centre for community gatherings, with a butcher, bakery, and general groceries. Today, the Store is under new management and serves the community a great selection of items as well as Mecca Coffee, pies, and sandwiches for purchase.
The current iteration of the Store serves as a café with plenty of outdoor seating, as well as a Post Office. The Store is the perfect location to stop for a quick lunch break and coffee. Serving the towns best pies, you can also pick yourself up a selection of local produce as well as pantry staples.
Adjacent to The Store is The Barn, with a history of itself. Also built in 1904, the barn was used as a buying house for all goods within the Camden Park Estate. Currently, The Barn is home to Recovered & Recycled, a homewares store selling restored, recycled, and upcycled outdoor garden furniture and more.
After finding yourself something for the garden, head south down Menangle Road until you reach Saint James’ Church, one of the finest churches in the Greater Sydney Area. Sat upon a hill, views from the Church stretch all over Menangle into Camden Park Estate. The church’s central tower, chancel and apse were constructed in 1896 thanks to funding by Mrs Elizabeth Macarthur-Onslow.
The streets of Menangle are dotted with cultural significance, the Camden Park House gatehouse sits proudly just out of town on Woodbridge Road, with its perfect white picket fence, acting as a reminder of the colonial history of Menangle, once owned by the Macarthur’s.
After exploring the town, head back to the station and either jump back in the car or onto the train. Heading on the train towards Campbelltown Station you will pass over the Nepean River Railway bridge, which is the oldest surviving rail bridge in New South Wales. If driving, head down Menangle Road towards Campbelltown and be sure to make a pitstop off at the bridge to appreciate all its glory.