The Big Golden Guitar is an Australian and Tamworth icon, which has been visited and photographed by literally hundreds of thousands of people since it was opened in 1987.
It stands 12 metres high at the southern approach to Tamworth, has featured in many film and TV documentaries and has served as a backdrop for a number of TV commercials.
The Big Golden Guitar is constructed of reinforced fibre glass by Len Surtees of Tamworth Fibre Glass Industries. It was modelled directly on the famous Golden Guitar trophies for the Golden Guitar Awards which explains why it has no strings. The original concept came from 2 TM's John Minson and Max Ellis in 1972 and the detailed design was by Tamworth artist Harry Frost. The Golden Guitar Awards were (and still are today) cast in solid bronze on a base of polished Tasmanian Blackwood. They stand high 325mm and weigh 1.5 kilos.
The Big Golden Guitar was officially opened by Slim Dusty and Mr Paul Crombie, General Manager of Tourism NSW, on January 25th 1988; since then the expanded Big Golden Guitar Centre has been owned and operated by Wendy and Noel Bennett.
It is located at the Golden Guitar Tourist Centre on the southern outskirts of Tamworth adjacent to the Longyard Hotel with the Tamworth Visitor Information Centre.