Major Roads

Aboriginal people created the first transport links in the Hunter Valley. Tracks wound through the Valley, connecting the first inhabitants to culturally significant sites.and essential resources. It wasn’t until 1823 that Major Morisset led the first recorded European expedition to the Hunter Valley from Sydney. In that same year, Howes Track connected Sydney and Maitland for the first time. The Valley was opened up for European occupation.

Travel by road was rough and uncomfortable. Ships were the preferred, and much faster, mode of transport. Even after the Great North Road was completed in 1836, roads were still used mainly as stock routes. This changed gradually as horses and horse-drawn carriages were used for increasingly longer journeys as roads and bridges improved. Roads only became the dominant transport pathways in the 1940s as the cumulative improvements to the road network gained critical mass.

 An aerial view of the roundabout on State Highway 23 that is situated near the University of Newcastle, Australia - 1992