You are in: BerryTo Places
Part of the traditional lands of the Wodi Wodi Aboriginal people, the hillside land that would become Berry was part of a large pastoral run called 'Coolangatta' established by Alexander Berry and Edward Wollstonecraft in 1822. The pair quickly utilised the land for commercial purposes, felling the cedar trees and using the cleared land for dairying, livestock farming and crops including wheat and potatoes.
Under the supervision of his brother David, Berry began to lease allotments of this land to farmers in the 1850s with the provision that the land be used for specific agricultural purposes, securing the area as the heartland of the local dairy and timber industries. The town itself began as the private village of Broughton Creek in the grounds of the Coolangatta property to service the tenants in the late 1850s, named in honour of the Aboriginal tracker 'Broughton' who had guided Berry to the most fertile land in the Shoalhaven in the early 1800s. With both Alexander and David unmarried and childless, the land would be subdivided upon their subsequent deaths only a decade apart in the late 1800s and the town officially proclaimed and renamed Berry after the pioneering brothers in 1890.
The following decade was one of great growth for the town with a dairy co-operative established to allow local dairy farmers a greater share of trade profits and with the opening of the Berry Railway Station in 1893, the local dairy industry continued to thrive. Experimental livestock and stud farms were introduced with great success in the mid 1900s and by the 1980s smaller subdivisions of land surrounding the historic village centre were being used for hobby farms. Yet the primary industry of Berry was shifting away from agriculture.
The picturesque heritage town is one of the most popular inland tourist destinations on the New South Wales south coast and today service industries established solely to cater for the regular influx of weekend visitors to the town provides Berry with a sustainable economic backbone. The town has long been a popular choice for retirees, but recent residential development has attracted a growing population of professionals who choose to commute from Berry for employment.