Last updated 2Jul19

Nil Desperandum

Nil Desperandum is located near Hurdle Creek and underneath Camels Hump in Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve.

Location: GR 55H FA 74484-78222 (MGA94), Tidbinbilla 8627-2S 1:25000

Nil Desperandum, October 2011

Visits: 1 Jun 19, 23 Aug 14, 1 Nov 11, 29 Oct 11, 7 Dec 10, 25 Apr 10, 27 Sep 08, 5 Dec 06

Photographs are available.


• KHA Namadgi database (private source). Site 521. Burnt Jan 2003 bushfire.

Sites of Significance in the ACT. A 9 volume set, pre-cursor to the ACT Heritage Register. Published in 1988 (Vols 1-7), 1989 (Vol 8) and 1990 (Vol 9). Site PT5. See extracts of the relevant pages in the photos above.

Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve Cultural Resource Survey and Conservation Plan 20 May 1991. David Bulbeck and Philip Boot. P 75-76. See extracts of the relevant pages in the photos above.

• Sign at site: Nil Desperandum a pise cottage erected by George Green and George Hatcliff in the 1890’s for Henry Ffrench Gillman and later occupied by the Blewitt and Gilmour families. Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve and Tidbinbilla Pioneers Assoc Inc – 28.9.1997.

Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve Draft Management Plan, Australian Capital Territory Canberra 1997. Nil Desperandum is an historic rammed earth residence located alongside Hurdle Creek and built between 1896 and 1899. It is a four roomed house with the remains of a eucalypt distillery nearby, the ‘best example in the ACT of a largely intact Eucalypt still’ (Freeman et al. 1994, Vol. 1). The Commonwealth Government resumed Nil Desperandum in 1988 from the then owner, Phillip Gilmour. It was then transferred to the ACT Government and incorporated into the boundaries of TNR in 1991.