St Bernards Church

Hartley Historic Site

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Take a tour or arrange a wedding at St Bernards Church in Hartley, a lovingly preserved example of colonial sandstone architecture.

Historic buildings/places
47 Old Great Western Highway, Hartley, NSW, 2790 - in Hartley Historic Site in Sydney and surrounds
Opening times

St Bernards Church is:

  • Open for pre-booked tours or Catholic services
  • Please contact Hartley Historic Site on (02) 6355 2117 or email for further information.
Hire this venue

St Bernards Church is available for events and function hire.

Please note
  • Catholic ceremonies are held at St Bernards with prior arrangement
  • Other denominations may hold services with the approval of the Parish Priest
  • For tours, please book ahead on (02) 6355 2117.

The beautiful pale sandstone St Bernards Church was built by local stonemason Alexander Binning, probably from a Gothic prototype. Before it was built, services had to be held in Hartley Courthouse, with the first priest arriving from Ireland in 1838. The stonework was completed in 1846, but the windows and altar came later.

The church was used continuously until 1963 and is still consecrated and in fine condition. Occasional services such as weddings and funerals are still held in the lovely old building and the Catholic Church retains the rights for its use. You can take a tour when it isn't in use for a service.

St Bernard’s is a well-preserved and very pretty church, and well worth a look around. You can also take great photographs in the grounds for any occasion, even just a day trip.

For directions, safety and practical information, see visitor info


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Current alerts in this area

There are no current alerts in this area.

Local alerts

For the latest updates on fires, closures and other alerts in this area, see

General enquiries

Park info

See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about St Bernards Church.

Getting there and parking

On entering Hartley Historic Site:

  • St Bernards Church is opposite Hartley Courthouse and next to Hartley Historic Site Visitor Centre

Road quality

  • Sealed roads

Vehicle access

  • 2WD vehicles

Weather restrictions

  • All weather


Street parking is available close to St Bernards Church. Bus parking is available.

Best times to visit

There are lots of great things waiting for you at Hartley Historic Site. Here are some of the highlights.


Enjoy the village as the days grow warmer and the trees are in blossom.


Bring the kids in the school holidays and step inside the amazing coolness of Hartley Courthouse, with its thick sandstone walls.

Weather, temperature and rainfall

Summer temperature


12°C and 25°C

Highest recorded


Winter temperature


1°C and 13°C

Lowest recorded



Wettest month


Driest month


The area’s highest recorded rainfall in one day




  • Flush toilets

Picnic tables

Maps and downloads

Safety messages

Mobile safety

Dial Triple Zero (000) in an emergency. Download the Emergency Plus app before you visit, it helps emergency services locate you using your smartphone's GPS. Please note there is limited mobile phone reception in this park and you’ll need mobile reception to call Triple Zero (000).


Disability access level - medium

Assistance may be required to access this area. There is a portable wheelchair ramp.



NSW national parks are no smoking areas.

Visitor centre

Learn more

St Bernards Church is in Hartley Historic Site. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

Aboriginal meeting place

Hartley Court House, Hartley Historic Site. Photo: John Spencer

Hartley was once a meeting place for the Wiradjuri from the west and Gundungurra tribes from the east. In colonial times, Hartley Courthouse served as a mustering point for Aboriginal people.

Excellent bushwalking on historic roads

Picnic area in Hartley Historic Site. Photo: Christina Bullivant

The Hartley area is great for bushwalking along the early roads. After your visit to the village, you may like to set out on Lawson's Long Alley, Lockyer's Pass or Berghofer's Pass. Check out the Lithgow Town and Around website for details. The rural setting of Hartley is welcoming and peaceful – perfect for a picnic or a satisfying stroll. Explore the interesting remnants of heritage plantings surrounding the buildings in the village and keep an eye out for the many birds that thrive amid the gardens and native forest.

  • Hartley Historic Site Visitor Centre Stop in at Hartley Historic Site Visitor Centre to find out about the history of the buildings and town, book tours, and stock up on snacks and drinks.

The story of settlement

Ivy Cottage, Hartley Historic Site. Photo: John Spencer

This exceptionally well-maintained village is of national historical significance as a substantial early nineteenth-century settlement. It tells modern visitors a great deal about the expansion of European development in inland Australia and the beautiful old buildings illustrate the changing role and fortunes of Hartley from first settlement of the inland to the beginning of the motor transport era. You can find out all sorts of interesting facts at the visitor centre and educational groups can book tours with advance notice on (02) 6355 2117.

  • A Moment in Time exhibition Augustus Earle's (1793-1838) painting, 'A Moment in Time', courtesy of the National Library, is one of several images incorporated in the exhibition being shown at Corney's Garage in Hartley Historic Site. 
  • Hartley Courthouse This fine example of colonial architecture allows you to imagine the convicts, magistrates and members of the public passing through its doors. Book a guided tour through Hartley Historic Site Visitor Centre.
  • Hartley Historic Site Visitor Centre Stop in at Hartley Historic Site Visitor Centre to find out about the history of the buildings and town, book tours, and stock up on snacks and drinks.
  • Hartley historical tour On this interactive Stage 3 (Years 5-6) History excursion, students visit key sites in the Hartley Historic Site colonial village: the courthouse, the gaol and St Bernard’s Church. They'll explore the history of how this key colony developed.
  • St Bernards Church Take a tour or arrange a wedding at St Bernards Church in Hartley, a lovingly preserved example of colonial sandstone architecture.

Education resources (1)

School excursions (1)