Bull's Head Inn

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Founder of the Bull's Head Inn, William Horton, came to Australia as a convict, having been sentenced to transportation and seven years imprisonment for a trivial offence. His term of imprisonment ended, he met Henry Stuart Russell, who was travelling to the Darling Downs, and as later employed as a stockman at Cecil Plains. As a reward for his faithful service, Henry S. Russel established "Bill the Fiver" as landlord of the Bull's Head Inn at Drayton.

The first inn, a slab and shingle building, was erected in 1847, but was replaced in 1859 by the one which still stands on the site today. To the Bull's Head Inn came the squatters, teamsters, immigrants, missionaries, adventurers and wayfarers who passed along the road leading from the coast to the unknown inland.

William Horton was one of the first to acquire land at "The Swamp". On it he built the Separation Hotel, now known as the Royal Hotel. He retained his interest in the Bull's Head Inn for some years. It is said that William Horton planted the first willow tree at "The Swamp". It was grown from a slip taken from a willow tree in Sydney that had been brought to Australia from Napoleon's tomb at St. Helena.

When Rev. B. Glennie paid his first visit to Drayton, in August 1848, William Horton made the Bull's Head Inn available for the first Church of England service held at Drayton.

In 1859, Archbishop Polding found accommodation at the inn. Captain William Witham was "mine host" at the inn when Arthur Sydney Lyons brought his newspaper to the Darling Downs in 1858. Soon afterwards William Witham left Drayton to conduct the Commercial Hotel in Toowoomba.


In 1872, the once flourishing Bull's Head Inn was almost deserted. Other hotels and boarding houses had been built in Drayton, and Toowoomba was rapidly robbing Drayton of its early importance.

In 1879 Thomas Price Horton, son of William Horton, sold the Bull's Head Inn to Richard Stephen Lynch. Henceforth the Bull's Head Inn was used as the private residence of the Lynch family, and was renamed "The Terrace".

Richard Lynch, who arrived in Drayton in 1857, worked for A. Gaydon (saddler), and later had his own business in Drayton. His wife was Sarah Neale, daughter of Henry Neale, one of the early settlers and one of the rival Mayors. For almost sixty years Mrs Lynch and her daughters conducted the Drayton Post Office in a southern room of "The Terrace". In August 1952, the Misses Lynch relinquished their duties at the Post Office, which was then transferred to another building. All members of the Lynch family have now passed away. The last surviving member, Alan Campbell Lynch, died in September 1973. The National Trust is now restoring the Bull's Head Inn.


National Trust Queensland - http://www.nationaltrustqld.org/property-royalbull.htm


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