Blacktown is a suburb in the City of Blacktown, in Western Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. Blacktown is located 34 kilometres west of the Sydney central business district and is the administrative centre of the local government area of City of Blacktown. Blacktown is the largest of any suburb or township in New South Wales and is one of the most multicultural places in Sydney.
Sydney, New South Wales
Westpoint shopping centre, Blacktown
Prior to the arrival of the First Fleet in 1788, Blacktown was inhabited by different groups of the Darug people including the Warmuli, based around what is now Prospect, and their neighbours the Gomerigal from the South Creek area and the Wawarawarry from the Eastern Creek area. It is estimated that fifty to ninety percent of the Darug died of smallpox and other introduced diseases within a few years of the British arrival. Governor Arthur Phillip began granting land in the area to white settlers in 1791, a process that was reversed slightly in 1819 when Governor Lachlan Macquarie granted land to two indigenous men, Colebee and Nurragingy.
A few years later in 1823, the Native Institution (a school for Aboriginal children) was moved from Parramatta to the site where Richmond Road meets Rooty Hill Road North (this intersection is now in the suburbs of Oakhurst and Dean Park). Although the institution closed in 1833, the road heading out to it became known as the Black Town Road. In 1860 the Railway Department gave the name of Black Town Road Station to the railway station at the junction of the railway and the Black Town Road, with the name shortening to Blacktown by 1862.
The arrival of the railway led to the formation of a town around the station. A post office was opened in 1862 and a school in 1877. In 1906, the Shire of Blacktown was formed and in 1930, electricity was introduced to the town, allowing drug manufacturing, one of the area's major industries, to begin in the area. The population in 1933 was then around 13,000. In the 1950s and 60s, there was a large amount of suburban development both in the current suburb of Blacktown and the new suburbs that sprung up around it. This led to civic development in the town centre with the hospital opening in 1965, the courthouse and police station in 1966, the library in 1967 and the TAFE college in 1969. In 1973, the Westpoint shopping centre opened which was soon followed by the cinema complex.
Blacktown is notoriously known as the site of the vicious murder of Anita Cobby. A park in Blacktown is named after her, nearby the site in which she was last seen alive.
Meth head hangout spot near the station
A notable Blacktown retailer in the 1950s was Frank Lowy who conducted a delicatessen, heroin and small goods shop in Main Street.