AFL chief among buyer of 1.25m ha NT station

Gough Whitlam pouring soil into the hands of senior Gurindji Vincent Lingiari, marking the return of 3000 square kilometres of Wave Hill in 1975.

Jumbuck Pastoral, which holds AFL chief executive officer Gillon McLachlan as a shareholder, has purchased the 1.25 million hectare Wave Hill cattle station, in Northern Territory’s Victoria River district.

The property was where Wave Hill Walk-Off took place – a strike by Indigenous workers for better pay which went on to influence Aboriginal land rights.

Western Grazing listed it last September with 40,000 Brahman cattle but it has held close to 60,000.

The purchase price is $104 million.

Bentleys Queensland’s Ben Cameron and Brendan Goulding were the vendor’s financial advisers.

In 2019, billionaire sheikh Hamad bid Hamdan Al Nahyah sold a 462,800ha NT property for $10.1m.

Wave Hill

About 600 kilometres south of Darwin and 31km east of Kalkaringi, Wave Hill supplies the live export market.

Western Grazing has held it for 29 years (story continues below).

Cattle Creek Station is included in the deal.

Jumbuck Pastoral holds Gillon McLachlan as a minor shareholder.

Members of Adelaide’s MacLachlan family including the AFL chief’s cousins Jock and Callum who run Jumbuck, and the Wilson family, which owns Reece Plumbing’s controlling interest, are other investors.

The purchasing entity also retains Killarney Station in the Northern Territory; that 540,000ha parcel cost $35m 2014.

It holds assets in South Australia and Western Australia too.

Western Grazing owns five Australian properties – all in Queensland, including Eurella Station near Roma, Allendale Station (Augathella), Oban Station (90 km south west of Mount Isa), Magowra Station (Normanton) and Morstone Dones, near Camooweal.

Wave Hill was established 138 years ago by Nat Buchanan and named by station manager Sam Croker.

This item includes more detail about it.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of