Dictionary of Sydney

The Dictionary of Sydney was archived in 2021.

Mount Colah

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Mount Colah

Mount Colah is in the parish of South Colah and the shire of Hornsby.

The original inhabitants of the area were people from the Dharug and Kuring-gai speaking groups. It is believed that the Aboriginal word ‘colah’ or ‘gula’ was used to describe koalas and there is evidence that in the early years of the colony there were many koalas in the area

The railway station at Mount Colah opened in 1887 and was at first called Colah, but to avoid confusion with the parish, its name was changed to Mount Colah.

Excelsior Road at Mount Colah was the first place in Australia where iron ore was mined. Although the ironstone found a market, the venture was not profitable and was abandoned when other sites were found. [1]

Asquith Golf links at Mount Colah occupies land originally owned by Mr Salmond in the 1860s. In June 1938, a nine-hole golf course was opened on the land, and in 1964 it was extended to 18 holes. [2]

Community development

The Mount Colah Progress Association was in operation for 35 years and met in the Mount Colah Guide Hall. By 1986 it was on the verge of folding. A community centre, which the Progress Association had long agitated for, was opened in 1989.

The NSW Housing Commission built homes at Mount Colah in the 1960s. In the 1980s villa-style medium-density housing was built on the western side of the suburb, providing a choice of affordable housing.

Foxglove playing fields was once a gully between Mount Colah and Mount Kuring-gai. The Metropolitan Waste Disposal Authority obtained the land for a waste deposit depot, which operated between 1971 and 1977. [3] After the site had been filled, it was converted to a sports complex.

Mount Colah is a popular suburb for families with a mix of housing styles and a bushland setting close to major shopping centres.


Claire Schofield, Shaping Hornsby Sbire, Hornsby Shire Council, Hornsby, 1988


[1] Berowra Bush Telegraph, 6 February 1997, p 8

[2] Claire Schofield, Shaping of Hornsby Shire, Hornsby, Hornsby Shire Council, 1988. p 256

[3] Claire Schofield, Shaping of Hornsby Shire, Hornsby, Hornsby Shire Council, 1988