Historic tunnels unearthed in New Norfolk
Derwent Valley Mayor, Martyn Evans, was very excited today with the release to Councillors of a video of historic tunnels that run under New Norfolk. “There has been speculation for some time about tunnels running under our town, the video shown to Councillors today at a Council Workshop confirms this important discovery.
“The tunnels run in vicinity of Burnett Street to The Avenue area and are believed to have been built in the mid 1800s; with significant repairs having been done in the late 1920s. “Much of this find is still to be confirmed; however it opens up a whole new world of heritage and tourism opportunities for New Norfolk and the wider Derwent Valley,” Martyn Evans said.
For many years there has been speculation that New Norfolk housed a series of underground tunnels. Some belived they were used for transferring convicts or patients to and from boats and Willow Court, while others thought that they were drains put in during the settlement period. The video shown to Derwent Valley Councillors confirms that these are tunnels that are wide enough for people to walk through comfortably.
“There is still a lot of work to be done, including further investigation and filming of the find. Council is hoping to work with Heritage Tasmania and the State and Australian Governments to ensure that this important find is conserved and if safe, made available to the public to see.
“These tunnels compliment the Derwent Valley’s already strong reputation as a heritage hot spot in Tasmania, and will provide not only tourism but also research opportunities well into the future,” Mayor Evans said.