Created in 1991/92, the Australian Standing Stones in Glen Innes is the national monument to Celtic people, past and present. The Stones acknowledge the contribution to Australian culture made by people from the Celtic nations of Scotland, Ireland, Cornwall, Wales, the Isle of Man, Brittany, Asturias and Galicia.
The first Stone was raised on September 7, 1991 by the local Tug o’ War team. At the ceremony, emblems from the Celtic nations were place into the excavation – thistle (Scotland), shamrock (Ireland), leek and daffodil (Wales), primrose (Cornwall), a piece of broom (Brittany), ragwort (Isle of Man), wattle (Australia) and a sprig of rowan – an ancient Celtic symbol. A bottle of whisky was also poured in to the excavation by the local Catholic priest, who remarked “For shame, for shame to be so wasteful. It should have been filtered through the kidneys first!”
The Australian Standing Stones were officially opened by the then NSW Governor, Rear Admiral Peter Sinclair on February 1, 1992.
The Australian Standing Stones continue to attract national and international exposure and is a major tourist destination in the Glen Innes Highlands.
Centennial Parklands, site of the Australian Standing Stones is home to the Australian Celtic Festival.
The Australian Standing Stones Management Board (ASSMB) is a Community Committee of Council and is responsible for managing the site.
The Celtic Family Wall offers individuals, families, clans and societies the opportunity to house authentic stones from Celtic homelands and places of significant Celtic heritage. Contact the Australian Standing Stones Management Board for information on how to place a stone and memorial plaque.
Author, John Mathew D Urr, has been involved with the Australian Standing Stones and the ASSMB since its inception. This definitive history was launched at the 2012 Celtic Festival. It features an extensive collection of black and white and full colour photos detailing the significance of the Standing Stones.
For more information contact the Glen Innes Visitor Information Centre on (02) 6730 2400.