Roxburgh, New Zealand

Roxburgh, New Zealand

Urban AreaPopulation1,210 (2006)
NameCentral Otago District Council
(see Alexandra
Population16,950 (2004 est.)
ExtentIncludes the towns of Alexandra
Clyde, Cromwell, Roxburgh,
and Ranfurly

Roxburgh is a small New Zealand town of about 750 people on the banks of the Clutha River, 40 km south of Alexandra in the South Island. It is on the main highway linking Central Otago (in which it lies) with the city of Dunedin, 155 km to the east.

An important centre during the Central Otago goldrush of the 1860s, in more recent times Roxburgh has relied on a mixture of livestock and stone fruit production for its economic survival. It is one of the country's most important apple growing regions, and other stone fruit such as cherries and apricots are also harvested locally.

Five km to the north of the town is the Roxburgh Dam, the earliest of the major hydroelectric dams built on the Clutha.

From 1928 until 1968, Roxburgh was served by the Roxburgh Branch, a branch line railway that ran to the town from the Main South Line. For the entire period the line served Roxburgh, it made a working loss, but it helped to promote economic development in the town and was an important means of supplying materials for the Roxburgh Dam. Today, relics of the town's former status as a railway terminus still exist, including a turntable pit, a water tank for steam locomotives, and the station building has been converted into a hayshed and workshop.Most of the houses which once housed railway workers (also known as "Railway Houses") still stand and are now in private ownership.

There is also an opencast lignite mine located just north of town at Coal Creek.

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