ABOUT US

ABOUT SILVERDALE FARM

Silverdale is a private Thoroughbred broodmare and spelling farm located in the beautiful region of the Southern Highlands of New South Wales, south-west from Sydney near Bowral and close to the coastal area of Kiama.

Formerly a working dairy farm atop the fertile soils of the Southern Highlands, Silverdale is uniquely situated for Thoroughbred breeding and only one hour from Sydney.

Silverdale is uniquely situated for Thoroughbred breeding with lush, naturally irrigated pastures which extend to rich undulating paddocks.

Silverdale’s facilities are of the highest quality to ensure our stock are extremely well cared for. A full security and monitoring system has been installed. Our partners can log in to a range of ten camera’s to see their horses throughout the property at any time. Log on to watch mares foaling and see your horse develop through to sales preparation and later when spelling.

Here at Silverdale, we are passionate about providing the very best for our bloodstock. We pride ourselves on our highly experienced and professional team with an emphasis on personalised care.

Our staff are passionate and take the utmost pride in this unique equine developed property.

They work around the clock to ensure their stock is cared for to the highest level. Silverdale warmly welcomes visitors to our farm most days of the year. Please call to make an appointment. We are proud of our stud.

OUR UNIQUE LOCATION

Our owners and partners find the farm very accessible, allowing them to visit their horses regularly. Our excellent facilities provide the best possible environment for raising Thoroughbreds. You can keep in regular contact via our website cameras or our on-site staff.

Our location in the Southern Highlands is a major advantage, being closer to the racetracks in Sydney. From an international perspective, the racing environment in New South Wales is right up there with the best in the world for facilities, prize money and production of world-class bloodstock.

During the recent drought, visitors to our farm consistently commented on the green pastures which was in their words “totally unexpected”. The Southern Highlands region has more rain year-round than the Upper Hunter Valley.
Our temperatures are cooler and horses typically acclimatise better with the cold than the heat. Silverdale is likened more to the area around Cambridge New Zealand than the Upper Hunter Valley. In fact, the early settlers to our area established farms here as it reminded them so much of Ireland.
The Southern Highlands has a land area almost as large as the city of Sydney, so it is not surprising it contains many micro-climates.
The average rainfall for nearby Bowral is 1050mm per year (compared to 650mm in Scone). This means we have grass growing better and longer in this area compared with the Scone region. We are not required to irrigate as much as other areas, such as the Upper Hunter Valley.

The History of Silverdale Farm

In the early 1930’s, the property was an agricultural farm, growing vegetables. Later on and prior to Grant Bloodstock purchasing the property, it was run as a successful and well-respected dairy farm for 40 years.

The hamlet of Avoca was named by Thomas Seery, a settler who moved from Picton. Looking out over the area, he said the land reminded him of the lovely Vale of Avoca in the Wicklow Mountains of Ireland. The first land titles issued in the 1860’s were taken up by families whose names are still well known in Avoca. Many were Irish and land use reflected their background. Dairying, pig breeding, vegetable growing, and saw-milling were the main pursuits and, with such rich basalt soil to till, Avoca farmers prospered through the bounty of abundant soils and sheer hard work. Nothing has changed today.

These early settlers had first to clear the heavily timbered country and provide for their own immediate needs. The timber mills that sprung up in the district, including Seery’s in Cleary’s Lane, provided a source of income for the purchase of seed and livestock. Ulster Park sits opposite Silverdale and today is under the stewardship of Paula and Karen Shadbolt, who owned Hampton Court (now standing in XXXX, Victoria) and the 2018 Queensland Oakes runner Youngstar.

Today, the districts around Silverdale are verging onto an explosion in Thoroughbred breeding. Already John Muir has established a showpiece with Milburn Creek, producing results way beyond expectation with his stock being in the top 10 of the highest average and/or aggregate of recent sales. John and his manager, Scott Holcombe, have been great assistance in the establishment of Silverdale and their contributions are recognised with paddocks being named after each of them.

Many crops were tried, with peas, cabbages, and potatoes being the most successful; yet, it was dairying that provided the best financial return in the district.

Local dairymen joined together in a co-operative and, in 1889, opened the Wilde’s Meadow and Yarrunga Dairy Company’s butter factory, christened the EMU. It went on to outlive most of the other small dairy factories in the area. In 1922, it was taken over by the Moss Vale Dairy Farmers Company.

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