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 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