Forbes Shire sits proudly on Wiradjuri Land and we acknowledge this nation as the traditional owners and pay our respect to elders past, present and emerging. The Wiradjuri nation is the largest cultural footprint in NSW - from the Blue Mountains in the east, to Hay in the west, north to Nyngan and south to Albury in the South Western slopes region.
The Wiradjuri people were a hunter-gatherer society made up of small clans or close family groups whose movements followed seasonal food gathering and ritual patterns.
The 2016 Census has the aboriginal population standing at 1,021 in the Forbes Shire, that is 9.6% of the total population.
The Forbes Wiradjuri Dreaming Centre (WDC) is an iconic project initiated by the Forbes Wiradjuri Community to promote Wiradjuri culture and stories. The Centre is a unique hub for educating the community and regularly hosts cultural events, meetings and workshops conducted largely by enthusiastic and dedicated local volunteers. Around the Centre you will find several totem poles telling the cultural stories from this remarkable community and a yarning circle and sand dance ring as well as interpretative signage featuring aspects of Wiradjuri culture. On the shoreline of adjacent Lake Forbes near the WDC is a bronze statue by artist Brett ‘Mon’ Garling entitled “Family Matters”. This breathtaking piece features two Indigenous women with child returning from gathering food and is an iconic component of the work undertaken between the Forbes Arts Society and the Wiradjuri Dreaming Centre committee.