Working dogs have long been an important part of the Muswellbrook Shire’s history – and the latest incarnation has found a permanent home at Campbell’s Corner.
The design was submitted as a possible successor to replace the Blue Heeler statue opposite Loxton House – the original landmark, a source of local pride and sometime shenanigans, was deemed to be at the end of its life and in need of replacing.
While Newcastle-based artist Tanya Bartlett’s design was not chosen to replace the ailing “Hunter’ it gained many admirers – and was subsequently acquired by Council.
General Manager Steve McDonald said that while it wasn’t the submission chosen as a replacement, the sculpture was so captivating that Council wanted to find a permanent home for it.
“Council feels it will make an excellent addition to that space” he said.
The Australian cattle dog, commonly called the Blue Heeler, was bred by Thomas Hall at Dartmoor, a large property about 12km north of Muswellbrook, in the 1840’s. Seeking a hardy dog capable of coping with the harsh conditions of the Australian bush he crossed a dingo with a Northumberland Blue Merle and was instrumental in the development of this iconic breed.
The original statue was erected in recognition of the cattle dog’s contribution to Australian rural life and the development of our Blue Heeler in the Hunter.
In its new home at Campbell’s Corner this latest “Bluey” continues the legend.