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Hole 3: Woonona

Par: 3

Distance: 150 metres

A small native garden on the left and a bunker on the right protects the undulating green. Any wayward shot both left or right makes it difficult to make par.

A beautiful outlook of the Pacific Ocean can be admired over the next few holes. This can sometimes have a calming effect.

overview map of Hole 3

Woonona (Hale's) Mine 1857 - 1863

Opened by John Hale in 1857, the mine was open for several years until becoming insolvent in 1863 and falling idle for over 20 years. The mine re-opened as the Woonona Colliery on 9 November 1889.

Originally called the Bellambi Mine, the operation soon became known as The Woonona Mine.  It was opened by a local business man Thomas Hale on a property then owned by Henry Osborne, just northwest of what is now Russell Vale golf course.

Often referred to as Bellambi Colliery, the mine was operated by the Bellambi Coal Co. The mine virtually closed in 1918, and the workings of Bellambi Colliery were incorporated into the South Bulli Colliery in 1926.

Thomas Hale was responsible for building a deep water port facility at Bellambi Point, and “model railway” with a signal box where it crossed the Princess Highway near Alfred Street. This line was used to transport Woonona Mine's coal to the port.  Hale was also responsible for proving the high quality of Illawarra coal after having it tested England. This led to the coals of the Illawarra becoming Australia’s preferred source for export coal.

Thomas Hale and the Woonona Mine were also the first to export coal to China and later to secure markets in California as well. In 1913 a roof fall revealed fossilised Ichnamium Gampsodactylum a reptile only previously found in the Permian rocks of Europe.

Next: Hole 4: Russell Vale

Previous: Hole 2: Osborne-Wallsend

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