A MOVE from Sydney to Bathurst, combined with a love of history and writing, has spawned a new book about the Bridle Track.
Author Sharon Shelton is preparing to launch her new book, Tales of the Bridle Track: Bathurst to Hill End, on November 24.
The book has been a labour of love, allowing her the opportunity to connect with her neighbours on the Bridle Track and tell the stories of the families who have called it home for generations.
"My husband and I moved from Sydney and bought a property on the Bridle Track, and I've always had an interest in history, so it seemed like the next step," Ms Shelton said of what prompted her to write the book.
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While she's certainly not new to the world of publishing, Ms Shelton's first passion was art and drawing.
In fact, you can see some of her own artwork on the cover of the new book.
Her journey from concept to publication started with interviewing her neighbours, who were able to provide her with a lot of valuable information about the area.
"Everyone had old photo albums and families have been there for generations, so the history was always there," she said.
As time went on, people started to contact her with their stories and photos from the Bridle Track, which have been included in the book.
Readers will get to see "some pretty amazing stories" documented in the book and will likely find themselves comparing their lives today to what people once endured.
Ms Shelton said there are stories in the book that describe there being no electricity, no running water, and women being left at home while their husbands went off to work.
"What I really wanted to do was tell the stories behind the photographs and it sort of grew from there," she said.
With so much content to write about, the book blew out to encompass 450 pages by the time it was ready to be printed.
"It more than doubled in size. My original thought was 200 pages, but it quickly went beyond that," Ms Shelton said.
After starting the book in 2015, Ms Shelton looks forward to finally launching it next week at Tremain's Mill.
It's a perfect venue for the launch of this book, given it is also steeped in history.
"Originally, before it got too big, I was going to have it at one of the properties [on the Bridle Track], but I realised I had a lot of paintings of the Bridle Track and it kept getting bigger until it was too big to be at the house," Ms Shelton said.
"Then Steven Birrell from Tremain's offered me the gallery space at the mill."
The book launch event will start at 10am and conclude at 5pm.
People can purchase copies of the book, have them signed and then enjoy an art exhibition that has been titled 'Bridle Track Revealed'.
Original photographs, maps and relics of the Bridle Track will also be on display.
The book itself costs $50, but Ms Shelton is also offering a special price of $200 for five if anyone is looking to get multiple copies.
Tales of the Bridle Track: Bathurst to Hill End was made possible thanks to a $3000 interpretation grant from Bathurst Regional Council and financial assistance from 11 other sponsors.
To find out more about the book or the upcoming event, visit Ms Shelton's Facebook page, called The Bridle Track Bathurst to Hill End.
Ms Shelton said there has been a lot of interest shown about the book already, with a number of people pre-ordering their copies.
She hopes those who come to the launch get value out of the various displays that support the stories within the book.
"It should be a really interesting day for people to come and see all the information," she said.