Keep an eye on the NFHS Facebook page for invitations to our activities but this 'Events' page will give you not only the details but a map and links as well. 'Diary Dates' shows a chronological summary but please scroll down to below 'Join Us!' to see the details, maps and links for our events and outings.

Diary Dates

Join Us!

Monthly - see Members' Area for details

Special Interests Groups

NFHS Members only

Time: see notice

Cost: Nil

Getting there:

Private transport or public transport

(see Contact page for details)

Sunday, 14 March 2021

Hunter River Cruise

Members and friends

Time: 9.40 am leave wharf

Cost: $69 concession
         (paid to Nova Cruises)

Getting there: (See map)

Beginning Monday, 22 March 2020

Canberra visit

Members and Friends


Cost: Accommodation, meals and venue entry (where appropriate)

Getting there: Private transport

March & April 2021

NFHS Society Members

Time: Bookings essential

Cost: Nil 

Getting there: Private transport

Sunday, 25 April (ANZAC Day)

Kurri Kurri

Members and friends

Time: 10.00am


Cost: $2 museum entry & your food

Getting there: Private transport

NCC Digitisation Lab

Friday, 3 September 2021

Members and Friends

Time: TBA

Cost: Nil

Getting there: Private transport

Three fabulous days in 2022

2022 Conference - Wests - to be confirmed

Community Event

Time: Three fabulous days

Cost: TBA

Getting there: Own transport

Sunday, May 2022 (Now in 2022)

Free Sandgate Tours

Community Event


Time: Booked tour times

Cost: Free - Bookings essential

Getting there: Private Vehicle or

Public Transport

Scroll down to find further details of our events, outings and other activities. They are listed in chronological order.

Thanks to our many organisers we have a very informative year in front of us! We encourage every member to be involved in any way they are able.


  • Pat has arranged some fantastic social and historical experiences for members and friends.

  • Pat also organises our educational courses that are run by members who know the subject. See the How to ... ? page for details and future courses.

  • Marg plans our member orientation sessions and our Sandgate tours. Visit the How to ... ?  page for details.

  • Our Special Interest Groups are run by people who know the subject. Learn more and find the contacts on the Members Only page

Our Special Interest Groups currently are:

1. Ancestry Users

2. Convicts in Australia

3. DNA and Genealogy

4. English Ancestors

5. Irish Ancestors

6. Military Ancestors

7. Researching Family History

8. Scrapbooking for Genealogy

9. UTAS online genealogy course support

A very big "Thank You!" to all these people for their planning and work.


Sadly during 2020 many events had to be cancelled or modified due to COVID-19 and we have had to limit both outdoor event numbers to 20/30 and indoor activities to 8. It is likely that 2021 will see further relaxing of restrictions and we will adapt our activities accordingly so watch this page for any changes. 


If you have any suggestions for future excursions or activities please leave a message in our actual Suggestion Box on the front desk in the NFHS reception room or on our online Suggestion Box on the Members Only page.

Keep up to date with every activity that is happening here and on our calendar. We love your company for Social events but we need your help on special days.

Hunter River Cruise

When: Sunday, 14 March 2021

When: 9.40 am

Where: Nova Cruises - Newcastle Harbour

Cost: either $69 - concession price

Transport: Own Transport to Nova Cruises

Bring: a hat and sunscreen for outside; camera

We can begin the year with a cruise on the Hunter River. The river is busy with two arms, and with tankers loading and unloading goods, tugs escorting tankers up and down the river and gently nudging them into their wharf. We will sit back in air conditioned comfort watching all the activity occurring in one of the busiest ports in Australia.

We have booked on the Hunter River Discovery tour. We will meet at 9.40am at the Harbour Square Boat Dock behind Rydges (exit the light rail at Civic). The cruise provides morning tea and then a hot lunch at the Junction Inn Hotel at Raymond Terrace consisting of a choice from Roast of the day, Fish and chips, Chicken Schnitzel or Caesar salad. The cost is $74 full fare and $69 for a concession.


The cruise must be prepaid in full to Nova Cruises as soon as you have confirmed your place. Phone Nova Cruises on 0400 381 787 to arrange payment. Full details of the cruise can be found on the Nova Cruises website.

The cruise is now full but you should email Pat at in case there are any cancellations.

A Visit to Canberra

When: Monday, 22 March to Friday, 26 March, 2021

Cost: Accommodation, Meals and Venue entrey

Transport: Own Transport

We are in the process of planning our trip to Canberra. We intend to leave Newcastle on Monday 22 March and travel to Canberra. Some are planning their own itinerary for a trip that overlaps. Some are Canberra and Sydney distant members and hope to join up with us for either full-time or part-time participation. We will
simply list a number of attractions that are able to be visited but most need to be booked and have time or number limits on visits.
So, what might be available besides the shops, cafes and coffee shops?
• Visits and tours of Parliament House
• The War Memorial Galleries and Halls
• The Australian Mint
• Duntroon College
• Museum of Australian Democracy (MOAD)
• National Gallery of Australia
• National Portrait Gallery
• Canberra History Society
• Canberra’s Family History Society
• The National Museum
• National Library of Australia
• National Archives
• National Film and Sound Archive

• National Capital ExhibitionCanberra’s Churches, including the Serbian Orthodox Church
• All Saint’s Anglican Church Anslie: Rookwood Mortuary Chapel
• Yarralumla’s Embassies: Embassy Drive
• Aboriginal Tent Embassy
• Australian National Botanic Gardens
• Black Mountain and Telstra Tower
• National Arboretum
• Lake Burley Griffin
• Canberra Museum and Art Gallery
• National Carillon
• A stroll around Lake Burley Griffin
• A stroll around Anzac Parade
• Hall Village Walk
• Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve
• Canberra Railway Museum
• St. John’s Schoolhouse Museum
• Democracy Walk

There is plenty to see and do in Canberra however COVID restrictions might mean only up to ten people can be in a place at any one time.


All Federal buildings require tickets. Tickets are free of charge but must be obtained before entry to the site. This allows monitoring of numbers but queues are required for those with no ticket. This may mean that our group will have to plan our visits at staggered times. We can choose what we wish to see and do and when we do it and can organise individual tickets to visit places on our wish list.


Pat will have a list of cafes and coffee shops that some might find helpful. You can shorten or extend your visit to suit yourself.

There are at present 18 people on the list as interested and need to know if any others are interested. If you are, please email Pat at We will be in touch in the next few days regarding accommodation.

Orientation Sessions


There are thousands of resources in our Society Library, many unique to our organisation. But, working out how to find and use them all can be tricky – how they’re catalogued, what’s in all the file drawers, what’s on the computers.

We run free Orientation Sessions for all members, but especially for new members, to help answer those queries.


We’re hoping to run our next sessions in March and April 2021. 

The sessions will help you understand the keys to unlocking the resources:

  • the Surname Index to hundreds of family records

  • the Classification system for the books

  • the Catalogue, Subject Index, Cemeteries Index

  • the Snippers collection

  • the digital collection including less-known items like the Paracensus and the index to the Colonial Secretary’s In letters

  • Microfiche, Microfilm, CD indexes


There are small group discussions, hands-on activities and we provide summary sheets.

We’ve planned two sets of dates:

Group 1*: Saturday, 27 March (Print) and Saturday, 10 April (Digital)

Group 2: Saturday, 1 May (Print) and Saturday, 15 May (Digital)

You can nominate the group dates that suit you best. Sessions start at 9am and last about 2 hours. 

If you’re interested, sign up on the sheets on the noticeboard in the reception area or email the planning group convenor, Marg Ashford at

* Note: People who signed up for the cancelled 2020 sessions have been placed in Group 1. Please let me know if you’re still interested or if the group 2 dates suit you better. 

Kurri Kurri ANZAC Trip

When: Sunday, 25 April 2021

When: 10.00 am

Where: Kurri Kurri Visitors Centee

Cost: $2 - to Kurri Kurri Museum

Transport: Own Transport

Bring: a hat and sunscreen for outside; camera

We will meet at Kurri Kurri Visitor Information Centre at 10.00am and will spend a few moments paying our respects across the road at the Kurri War Memorial before travelling to the Kurri General Cemetery to view the flag display for ANZAC Day. A wander through the cemetery to remember the many returned servicemen commemorated there might turn up a relative or two. We will be able to visit the newly opened Coalfields Local History Museum at Abermain. The entry to the museum is $2.

Lunch will be at a local pub and from there we will visit historic Cessnock before we travel home.

Please email Pat at to ensure your spot for this trip and make sure that we know our numbers in order to comply with any COVID-19 restrictions.

Genealogy Courses

Genealogy Courses differ from Orientation Sessions. They are short courses led by someone experienced in the topic and are open to both members and non-members. There is a charge for each Genealogy Course to cover preparation of materials.

Each session will run for 45-50 minutes and will mainly be held at 9.00 am on a Saturday. Part of the course will locate the resources held within our library. After the course concludes the library will be open as usual so participants can remain and practice their newly acquired skills. All courses will be limited to no more than 24 participants. Some courses may be have even smaller numbers depending on the topic. All future courses will be limited according to COVID-19 restrictions.

To begin the year we will be repeating some of the courses from 2020 and then will introduce new courses from about May. Details of the courses on offer may be found on the How to ... ? page and on the calendar.

NSW State Archives

Due to COVID-19 our visit to State Archives had to be postponed but once NSW State Archives reopens to tours and until we can reschedule a date to visit, members might like to take advantage of these instructions to make their own way there to do their own research. Remember to take your lunch!


Currently individual bookings must be made to use the rooms at Kingswood and all orders for retrievals are to be made online.


This is how members can get to State Archives using public transport. You can travel to either St Mary's Station or to Penrith Station. St Mary's is more direct but Penrith may be quicker on your return journey. Use Trip Planner to clarify times.

1. Catch the Newcastle train to Strathfield.

2. From Strathfield Station make a connection to St Mary's Station.

3. From St Mary's Station exit to the bus stops and find stand 8. 

4. Catch the 770 bus from Mt Druitt to Penrith via Claremont Meadows. It turns left at Gipps Street shown on the map below.

5. The bus will stop at the main gate to the Archives. Ask the driver where you get off if you are unsure.

6. The 770 will travel on to Penrith and then return along the same route.

7. To return to a station catch the 770 either back to St Mary's Station or on to Penrith Station.

8. Catch the train from St Mary's Station or Penrith Station back to Strathfield Station and connect to a Newcastle train.

9. The 'Directions' link on the map below will provide details of different ways of travelling to State Archives at Kingswood.

Plans for the future!

These are our planned dates and locations for 2021 for your diary. Details will be added once they are confirmed.

7 May: Rookwood Cemetery 


3 September: The digitisation lab at Newcastle City Library but this has had to be postponed as the equipment is held up in Victoria. 

TBA: Postponed: Sydney Hospital Museum and Sisters of Charity Archives and Museum.

TBA: Newcastle Crematorium Tour will be announced as soon as rules at the Crematorium allow non-essential gatherings.

TBA: State Library visit, talk and tour has been cancelled due to COVID-19. When appropriate attempt will be made to re-schedule it.

Can you suggest a local history wander?


Do you have any ideas or can you share your family or local history knowledge while we explore the local area and and then share a chat with others over a coffee or a light lunch when we finish up at a cafe nearby. These walks are a new event from 2019 and our organiser is trying to make local walks every couple of months. Everyone is welcome. Bring your friends or family (including grandchildren). Other walks are planned for winter and while we have some locations in mind we would love some other ideas and there is plenty of time to think about places. Please put any suggestions in the suggestion box or send an email to the events organiser, Pat on or email our Secretary using the address on our contact page. ​


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