Freedom Rides to Walgett Timeline
(1939 - Present)

  • Bill Ferguson and Jack Kinchela of the Aborigines Progressive Association (APA) visit Walgett and Walgett APA is set up.

  • Aboriginal-Australian Fellowship (AAF) delegation visits Walgett.

  • The AAF representatives visit Walgett and witness segregation in the Oasis Motel- Hotel, the RSL and the Luxury Theatre. The AAF lobbies against segregation in Walgett.

  • Arrest of two 9-year-old Aboriginal boys is followed by a delegation of members of the AAF and/or the Builders Labourers Federation and Waterside Workers Federation. The Walgett APA re-established.

  • Student Action for Aborigines’ Freedom Ride (SAFA) bus arrives in Walgett and the students organise their first demonstration in front of the Walgett RSL.

  • Group of six SAFA students visit Walgett. The APA is active in Walgett.

  • Harry Hall and Ted Fields successfully organise a protest to end segregation at the Luxury Theatre together with a group of SAFA students and supporters from the APA, Sydney. Harry Hall and Ted Fields also organise a campaign to end segregation in Oasis and Imperial Hotel.

  • The Referendum to give the Commonwealth ower to make laws with respect to First Nations People and include them in the census.

  • The Foundation for Aboriginal Affairs is established in Walgett with Harry Hall as a manager.

  • The RSL in Walgett admits Tom Lake as a member.

  • Aboriginal Legal Service regional office set up.

  • Walgett Aboriginal Medical Service Limited established.

  • The 30th Anniversary of the Freedom Ride and a reunion of the SAFA students in Sydney.

  • Dharriwaa Elders Group (DEG) is established.

  • The 40th Anniversary of the Freedom Rides.

  • The 50th Anniversary of the Freedom Rides. Original Freedom Riders retraced their historic journey through Dubbo, Walgett, Moree and Kempsey.

  • The Freedom Ride Park is established in Walgett, NSW with an artwork to commemorate the Freedom Rides to Walgett.