Rocky Knob recognised for its cultural and spiritual significance

Rocky Knob, and the surrounding Hexham Wetlands, has been recognised for their cultural and spiritual significance to the Pambalong Clan of the Awabakal nation.

The elevated site of about 360 metres square sitting above the Hexham Swamp, is connected through songlines to other cultural sites in the area, including Mount Sugarloaf, Black Hill Ridge and the Doghole Cultural Site in Stockrington.

“Rocky Knob is known to the local Aboriginal people as a place for burial ceremonies and to pay respect to those who passed into the next life. It also represents the adaptability and resilience of the Aboriginal people of the Hunter region,” Heritage NSW’s Executive Director, Sam Kidman, said.

NSW Local Land Services requested that the site be listed because artefacts and burials found on and around Rocky Knob have the potential to contribute to our understanding of Aboriginal cultural practices in the Hunter Region and to NSW Aboriginal culture and history.

“The continual protection of Rocky Knob is so vitally important to our People, and the Aboriginal objects collected within close proximity are physical reminders left by our Ancestors which provide us as Descendants of the Awabakal People, an opportunity to make a physical connection through time with our Ancestors,” said Kerrie Brauer on behalf of the Awabakal Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation and the Awabakal Descendants Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation.

“Rocky Knob is an iconic landform and significant place within the landscape to the Awabakal Local Aboriginal Land Council and wider Aboriginal community,” said Peter Townsend on behalf of the Awabakal Local Aboriginal Land Council.

“It is known for its spiritual, cultural, and aesthetic values.”

Further information about Rocky Knob can be found on the Heritage NSW website at