Broken Hill City

About the area

Key Statistics


Broken Hill City is located in far western New South Wales, about 1,100 kilometres west of Sydney and 500 kilometres east of Adelaide. Broken City is surrounded entirely by Unincorporated New South Wales (Far West).

Land Use

Broken Hill City encompasses a township and surrounding rural areas. Broken Hill is the largest regional centre in the western half of New South Wales. The City encompasses a total land area of about 180 square kilometres. Mining and tourism are important industries, with some sheep farming.

Name Origin

Broken Hill was named as a "broken hill" by explorer Charles Sturt when he named the Barrier Range in 1844.

Indigenous Meaning

The original inhabitants of the Broken Hill area were the Wiljakali Aboriginal people.


European settlement dates from the 1850s, with land used mainly for grazing. Population was minimal until the 1880s, with growth through to the early 1900s, spurred by silver, lead and zinc mining and improved access. The population rose from about 21,000 in 1891 to 27,000 in 1901, and then to 31,000 in 1911, before declining to about 26,000 in 1921. Expansion resumed in the post-war years, with the population rising to about 31,000 in 1950. From the early 1970s the population declined, due largely to the closure and consolidation of mining operations. The population fell to about 28,000 in 1976, and continued to decline to about 24,000 in 1986. Gradual decline continued from the 1990s, with the population falling to about 19,000 in 2011.

Major Features

Major features of the City include the Broken Hill CBD, Centro Westside (shopping centre), Silver City Mint & Art Centre, Broken Hill Regional Art Gallery, Albert Kersten Mining & Minerals Museum, Whites Mineral Art & Mining Museum, Sulphide Street Railway Museum, Royal Flying Doctor Service (Broken Hill Base), Perilya Broken Hill Mine, CBH RASP Mine, Bemax Mineral Separation Plant, Broken Hill Hospital, Broken Hill Regional Aquatic Centre, Broken Hill Entertainment Centre, numerous galleries (including Absaloms Gallery, Howard William Steer Art Gallery, Images of Australia, Julie Hart Gallery, Pro Hart Gallery and The Horizon Gallery), Broken Hill Golf & Country Club, Sturt Park, Willyama Common, TAFE NSW Western Institute (Broken Hill College) and School of the Air.


Broken Hill City is served by the Barrier Highway, the Silver City Highway, the Western railway line and Broken Hill Airport.

Broken Hill City

economic profile