History of the Area

Gillitts Park is situated on what was know as the Emberton farm and the Dovehouse farm.
Owned by William Gillitt at the turn of the 1900’s, his descendants still live on at the original farmhouse in the Emberton Driving Range. The last of the farm still exists zoned as Agricultural land at the Hillcrest end of Ashley Drive and the majority of Gillitts Park was only surveyed as residential in the early 1980’s.

The original train line from Durban to Pietermaritzburg, built in the late 1800’s, winds through the residential areas and is the oldest working railway track in the country. This train line is no longer in regular use, and is only used by the Umgeni Steam Railway, who runs a tourist service of carriages through from Kloof Train Station to Inchanga Station on the last Sunday of every month. This train is pulled by 'Maureen', a restored Class 3BR No. 1486 steam engine built in 1912 and the sound of the train whistle echoing through the neighbourhood on a Sunday morning is a reminder of a quieter time of life.

The Gillitts Train Station on the line in the middle of Gillitts is derelict and currently not used, but is a beautiful example of 1900-era architecture. Dating back to the Boer War in the first decade of the 20th century, the train station was a stop for British soldiers transiting from Durban through to the Midland battlefields as well as returning wounded soldiers.

Did you know : The dam in Ashley Drive is over a hundred years old ? This was built as a water source for the British Army camp during the Boer War. This camp was situated in Camp Road, close to Gillitts Station and was a stopping point for soldiers heading off to the Front in the KZN Midlands, as well as returning, tired veterans.

There is a lot of history in this area and we have uncovered some fascinating stories of those pioneer days!!  If anyone reading this has any old photo’s of the area, either of constructions taking place, pictures of pastures now under houses, facts about the original residents or anything of interest in Gillitts 1 (Gillitts Park), please could you contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Those of you who have been here since the beginning… take a look at your photo albums! Of particular interest is the last 40 years, since the 1960’s.  We can then add them here for everyone to enjoy.