Welcome to SPN

Register and Join the most happening forum of Sikh community & intellectuals from around the world.

Sign Up Now!

Woolgoolga Oasis Of Indian Culture

Discussion in 'Sikh Sikhi Sikhism' started by spnadmin, Feb 13, 2010.

  1. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
    Expand Collapse
    1947-2014 (Archived)
    SPNer Supporter

    Jun 17, 2004
    Likes Received:
    Woolgoolga oasis of Indian culture

    http://www.coffscoa stadvocate. com.au/story/ 2010/02/13/ woolgoolga- oasis-of- indian-culture/

    FAMED for its Sikh Indian community, Woolgoolga is said to be a true microcosm of today’s multicultural Australia.

    Regarded as an oasis of Indian culture and for its Temple on the Hill, Woolgoolga is known among local Sikhs as ‘The Missing Piece of Paradise’.

    Making up half of the town’s population, Sikh farming families control 90 per cent of the banana plantations in the area.

    Their history in Woolgoolga began during the 1940s when immigrants from the Punjab came to Australia to work on local farms.

    The first to arrive were adventurist sojoumers who left their families to make their fortune.

    Some of these early immigrants eventually returned to India, but the majority stayed, developing a love and attachment to this country.

    They settled in Woolgoolga during World War II, because of labour shortages.

    After the war they were able to acquire leases and freeholds on banana plantations. Word soon spread that there was a good living to be made farming and more Sikh migrants followed.

    A short time later, the nation’s first Gurdwara, the Sikh Temple Woolgoolga, was built in Hastings Street.

    Then after decades of prospering from their hard work, the Sikh community funded the construction of the famed Guru Nanak Gurdwarra ‘The Temple on the Hill’.

    Some of the earliest Sikhs to arrive in Woolgoolga were Joginder Singh, Ralla Singh, Ganda Singh and Rap Chand.

    The first permanent resident was Labu Singh from Belga and Booja Singh from Malpar Arkan – the first Indian to purchase a banana plantation in Hollaways Road.

    Over the past 70 years, the community has flourished, with families integrating into the community.

    At last count there were 2500 Sikhs in the Coffs Harbour City Council area, while 21 per cent of the 450 students enrolled at Woolgoolga Public School are of Indian ancestry.

    Woolgoolga Sikh leaders say the town’s Indian heritage would not have been possible without the welcome, tolerance and encouragement of the host community.

    “We are also grateful to our forefathers who chose to make their home in this country where there is personal, political, religious freedom, social and cultural equality.

    “We are proud and honoured to be Australians. We are thankful for the privileges that we have enjoyed and we will fulfil our obligations with great enthusiasm.

    “We will endeavour to make this community a paragon of multicultural Australia,” Woolgoolga Sikh leaders said in a statement.

    By maintaining their culture, religion and heritage, the Sikhs have contributed to the ethnic and cultural diversity of the town, thereby giving Woolgoolga it’s unique and distinctive character.

    Pal Singh, his wife Kulwinder Kaur and their two sons say relocating to the Coffs Coast from India is the best decision they’ve ever made.

    Mr Singh first arrived in Woolgoolga 15 years ago working hard to make a living from a banana and blueberry plantation at Upper Corindi.

    Five years ago his family joined him from India, settling into the coastal community.

    Sabi Sandhu and Jaskaran Singh say the best part of the move to Australia has been living in close quarters with their extended family.

    “It’s just like at home, having so many of our cousins living near us, but Woolgoolga is a more beautiful place,” Jaskaran said.

    The family hails from the Punjab town of Sandhwan.

    Coming from a long line of farmers, the Singh’s link to the town came after their aunt Jaswinder married into the Woolgoolga Indian community.


    The Sikh meeting and greeting phrase holds great significance – much more than a simple hello or goodbye.

    Sat Shri Akal Ji, literally means truth, reverence, everlasting and etiquette

    When spoken it translates to mean may this meeting be truthful and real, and let us pay respect.

    The phrase is commonly heard when local Sikh Indians congregate at the Woolgoolga temples.

    Many Sikh Indians take on the surname Singh, as the religion does not believe in India’s caste system, which determines someone’s social class by their surname.

    Woolgoolga is one of the only towns in Australia where Smith is not the most common surname.

    There are 50 listings for Singh in the local telephone directory

    Forwarded by SPN member Tejwant Singh Malik ji

    Attached Files:

  2. Loading...

    Similar Threads Forum Date
    Wet Weather Failed To Dampen Enthusiasm For The Australian Sikh Games In Woolgoolga Sikh Youth Apr 7, 2015
    Leisure A Taste Of India (Curry Fest, Woolgoolga) Business, Lifestyle & Leisure Oct 30, 2010
    How The Sikhs Went Bananas In Woolgoolga Business, Lifestyle & Leisure Jun 6, 2010
    Woolgoolga Curryfest 2009 Cooking & Recipies Mar 20, 2009
    An Oasis In Every Wilderness Sikh Sikhi Sikhism Mar 13, 2010

  3. Randip Singh

    Randip Singh
    Expand Collapse
    Writer Historian SPNer Thinker Supporter

    May 25, 2005
    Likes Received:
    My wifes family have a banana plantation there.:happy::D
    • Like Like x 1
  4. AusDesi

    Expand Collapse

    Jul 18, 2009
    Likes Received:
    I know many people out of there. Plus my ex was a woopi local.
Since you're here... we have a small favor to ask...     Become a Supporter      ::     Make a Contribution     

Share This Page