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The A to Z of Randwick's History: Fast Facts

Select the subject: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Aeolia: (6 Aeolia Street, Randwick) built by Edwin Daintrey (1814-1887), q.v., solicitor and botanist, as his family home in 1859. It is now part of the Brigidine College, which moved there in December 1902 from their temporary initial rooms in Strathallan on Avoca Street.

Amphion: (128 Alison Road, Randwick) see ‘Verona’.

Amusu Theatre, Maroubra: (791 - 801 Anzac Parade), A ‘motion-picture house’ (cinema) which opened in December 1921 and closed on 13th June 1958. The final night was a ‘double feature’ show with “Davy”, starring Harry Secombe (of “The Goons” fame) in a debut singing role and an American racing car drama “The Devil’s Hairpin” starring Cornel Wilde. The cinema was built and operated by two Americans, Amos Hinton and Arthur Hennessy. As well as showing films, it was also the venue for political rallies, dances and fund raising events for local clubs. The building was demolished and a petrol station was built on the site, which in its turn was demolished in 1979 to make way for apartment buildings.

Aston Lodge: see ‘Emmanuel School’ topic

Avonmore Terrace: (26-42 The Avenue Randwick) A row of nine large Italianate-style houses completed in 1889 by John Walsh (1843-1893) built on land adjacent to Alison Park that he purchased in March 1888 from the trustees of St. Judes Church. The focal point is the large double-fronted central house with a projecting entrance porch the full height of the building topped with a pediment which encloses the name "Avonmore". This was the Walsh family residence, the other houses being let as they were completed. Among the earliest tenants were David Storey (MP for Randwick 1894-1924), Rev. Joseph Campbell, Anglican minister (at Randwick and Coogee 1889-1897), Francis Foy of the Foy Emporium family, and James Angus, who, like John Walsh, was a contractor to the State government’s Railways Department. The private schools ‘Lotaville’ and later ‘Brighton College’ were resident from 1894 until 1915. The row was known as ‘Walsh’s Terrace’ until 1910 when it became ‘Randwick Mansions’. ‘Avonmore’ is currently used as a private hotel. The terrace is No. 565 on the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v. below).


Bare Island Fort: This island is reached from La Perouse headland by a causeway bridge. It is nationally significant as an almost intact example of late 19th century defence complexes. It was built by 1881 using concrete, a new form of building material at the time. The fort was occupied and run as a museum by RDHS from 1963 to 1976. It is No. 978 on the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v.)

Bates, Percy (1870-1949) Hydraulic engineer, who pioneered the use of ocean wave energy at Lurline Bay.

Beecroft, Lawrence Herbert (1864-1951) (1864-1951) Widely printed early 20th century Sydney painter, miniaturist, postcard artist and theatrical ‘lightning sketch’ artist and lecturer. An important part of the Society's collection includes paintings and drawings of Aboriginal people of La Perouse done between 1905 to 1915. See also our Society's publication: Lawrence Herbert Beecroft: An Entertaining Artist by Ellen Waugh on the the Publications page.

SS Belbowrie was a wooden hulled steamship of 218 tons built at Blackall NSW in 1911. The ship was a coastal freighter and left Balmain for Shellharbour on 16th January, 1939 in heavy weather. During the night it struck the rocks on the southern point at Maroubra and by the next morning was submerged in water. See also A-Z topic ‘Shipwrecks’.

Blenheim House (17 Blenheim Street, Randwick) – was completed in 1848 on a 1.6 hectre block by Simeon Henry Pearce (q.v.) who had migrated to Sydney from Randwick in Gloucestershire, England and became Randwick’s first Mayor. The house faced west and is a ten room, square, sandstone and cedar 2-storied house with a large sandstone cellar. First Anglican service in district was held at Blenheim House during Pearce's residency. Blenheim House was purchased by Randwick Council in 1984. In 1989 a Friends of Blenheim House group was formed with the aim of seeing the building restored and put to some practical use.

Bob Clarke Memorial Grove: (Anzac Parade, Malabar) - Part of the reserve in the median strip of Anzac Parade was named in 1981 for the late Bob Clarke, a Life Member and Past President of the Malabar RSL Sub Branch. Within the grove is the Malabar district’s War Memorial. This landscaped area has a small obelisk, a flag pole and is flanked by two 42-punded muzzle-loading cannons which were cast in 1843. They are believed to have formed part of the defences of Fort Macquarie at Bennelong Point (now the Opera House). The Fort was demolished in 1901 to make way for a tram terminus The cannons were then sited on the northern headland of Coogee Beach until 1982.

Botany Bay: Captain James Cook initially named the bay, as recorded in the Endeavour’s log, ‘Sting Ray Bay’, as the crew had caught so many of these fish there. However, after he had been ashore, he wrote up his Journal using the name ‘Botanist Bay’, then ‘Botany Bay’, noting that this was due to the “great number of [previously unknown] plants found by Mr Banks and Dr. Solander”. For many years, in popular parlance, “Botany Bay” was synonymous with “Australia”.

Botany Cemetery, Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park: The Botany Progress Association lobbied the government to allocate land for a burial place at Bombarah Point, which was eventually gazetted in 1891. In 1901 many people were re-interred here from the Sydney Devonshire Street Cemetery, to make way for Central Station. These have been published as “Gravestone Inscriptions NSW – Sydney Burial Ground”, a copy of this limited edition book is in the RDHS library. There is also an on-line search facility at Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park See also A-Z topic ‘Cemeteries’.

Brighton & Hastings Terraces: (2 -20 Mears Avenue, Randwick) These are two identical medium-sized Victorian terraces adjacent to each other on the north side of Mears Avenue, each row having five residences. The houses and the Avenue were built in 1886 for William Mears (1821-1889), an “extensive businessman” who had retired from Bathurst in 1874, and who then occupied No. 2, Brighton Terrace. Sands Directory records that from 1886 to 1888 a separate dwelling was occupied by Francis Amy, a builder; possibly he was the builder of the terraces. In 1887 a private school for boys and girls was founded by Thomas and Julia Smith at No.10, which they called ‘Brighton College’. After only a year the Smiths had moved to larger premises at Amyville, Allison Street (now Alison Road), but still retained the school’s original name.

Bunnerong: The name comes from an 1823 land grant of 100 acres in the vicinity of Botany Bay to John Brown, a soldier from the 102nd Regiment of NSW. By 1831 it was in the possession of another - unrelated- John Brown, who wrote to the Colonial Secretary to clarify the matter. He stated that he was John Neathway Brown, emancipist and publican. Amongst other details, he also mentioned that “the Farm is known to the Aboriginal Natives by the name of ‘Boonerong’ and the writer wishes to retain the same”. The northern half of Bunnerong Road forms part of the western boundary of Randwick City.

Bunnerong Migrant Hostel : This was located at what is now Heffron Park, Matraville, on the south east corner of the intersection of Bunnerong Road and Fitzgerald Avenue. The buildings, large Nissen huts, were originally erected by the Commonwealth Government during World War II as wool and naval stores. They were then adapted after the War to house migrant families, around 1,200 people, in the post-war era. The hostel was closed in June 1967, and the site is now covered by sports' fields.


Captain Cook’s Statue: (Junction of Belmore Road with Avoca Street, Randwick) This landmark statue was unveiled before a large and appreciative audience on the 27th October 1874, the 146th anniversary of James Cook’s birth. Walter McGill (q.v.) had been commissioned by Captain Thomas Watson who owned the adjacent house (which he had renamed Cook Lodge) as he felt strongly the need for such a recognition of Cook’s achievements and had become tired of Government tardiness in supplying one. The statue was restored in 2001 by Randwick City Council.

Carlton: (122 Alison Rd, Randwick) is a large Italianate two-storey villa built about 1890 on a large block on the north side of what was then known as Sydney Road, almost opposite the Randwick racecourse. Alfred Geary (1849-1911) was the first occupant. It was a convenient residence for Geary, who was a senior turf horse-racing official and book-maker well known and esteemed in West Australia and Queensland as well in Sydney.

Carthona: (85 Todman Avenue, Kensington) A Federation house built c.1911 first occupied by builder Richard H Gallagher. This is No.555 on the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v.)

Cemeteries: Over the years, there have been four public cemeteries in the Randwick City area. The oldest is St. Jude’s Cemetery (1858), then Randwick General Cemetery (1873), Little Bay Coast Hospital Cemetery (burials recorded from 1881) and Botany Cemetery (Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park) (1891). These are all described separately in this A-Z. There was also a burial place attached to the Destitute Children's Asylum and mention should be made of Waverley Cemetery, (used from August 1877) as although just outside the Randwick area across the north-eastern boundary, many of Randwick’s former citizens are among over 80,000 people buried in its 40 acres of what has been described as one of the most beautiful cemeteries in the world.

Centennial Park: Set aside as a reserve by Governor Macquarie, this area became known as the Lachlan Swamps, and was carefully safe-guarded for use as a supply of fresh water for Sydney Town. Engineer John Busby designed a wooden water pipe – Busby’s Bore - to carry the water from the Paddington area to Hyde Park corner. This was completed in 1837, after much difficulty. When this supply became redundant in the mid 1880’s due to the water now coming from the Nepean River via Prospect, the NSW Government decided to create a park to commemorate the approaching Centenary of Australia’s founding, hence the name. The Centennial Park was opened with great pomp and ceremony on a very hot 26th January 1888, by Governor Carrington. The Park is the subject of an RDHS Monograph (No.1) Centennial Park, by Frank Doyle, 1978. See the Publications page for further details. Centennial Park, and the adjacent Queen’s and Moore Parks are No. 1384 on the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v.)

Centennial Park Gates: were designed by Louis Robertson

Chifley: This district lies between Malabar and Little Bay to the south, and was named in 1964 after Joseph Benedict (Ben) Chifley, (1855-1951), Labor Prime Minister of Australia from 1945 to 1949.

Chinese Market Gardens: (1 -39, Bunnerong Road, La Perouse) These are a still flourishing example of the numerous such places that once abounded in Randwick City area. Initially established by the European settlers, these were later taken over with great success by the extremely hard-working Chinese people. The La Perouse gardens are now listed as No.1299 on the NSW State Heritage Register (qv).

Christo & Jeanne-Claude Wrapped Coast site at Little Bay. In 1969 sculptors Christo & Jeanne-Claude created a huge work of art they called One Million Square Feet, Little Bay, by ‘wrapping up’ the rocky northern cliffs of Little Bay with rolls of woven plastic sheeting. Their helpers included rock climbers, architecture and art students, professional artists and army engineers. The work was barely finished when a southerly gale blew for two days ripping the plastic to shreds. Many scoffed, while others saw it as great piece of contemporary art, but it did bring large crowds of onlookers and encouraged new forms of art in Australia.

Cliffbrook: (45-51 Beach Street, Coogee) This is a two-story dark (liver) brick Edwardian house, built c.1921 by Sir Denison Miller, first Governor of the Commonwealth Bank. It was built on land formerly occupied by the original ‘Cliffbrook’ off Gordon Street, which was built in 1873, one of the earlier substantial houses in the area, and demolished in 1976. The present ‘Cliffbrook’ is No.609 on the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v.)

Clock Tower RAAF Memorial: (Pine & Brodie Avenues, Little Bay). The old Prince Henry Hospital site contains a clock made at Blenheim, Germany, in 1878. It was displayed at the great Sydney Exhibition of 1882, and fortunately survived the fire which destroyed the Exhibition building. It was then installed in an earlier hospital clock tower, a quaint corrugated iron structure built in 1898 by Henry Tucker Jones. This was demolished in 1935. The present brick tower, surmounted by a copper spire, was erected in 1953 and bears a plaque commemorating Royal Australian Air Force officers who died in action in the Celebes in World War II. The plaque reads: “Greater love hath no man" - in everlasting memory of our dear son Flying Officer Norman Falkner Dwyer, RAF and Wing Commander Stanley Gordon Stilling DFC, RAF who were killed in action together in the Celebes on 1st October 1943. A loving tribute from William and Edith Dwyer”. The men were cousins; William Dwyer was a former manager at the hospital.

Commercial Building: (200 Alison Road, Randwick). A stone-faced three storey building with an arched entrance-way, it was built about 1915 and designed by architects Robinson and Marks. The Bank of New South Wales purchased the building in 1931, but it is now privately owned and accommodates shops and offices.

Coogee: This area was named and settled by August 1838, recogised by a Government Gazette notice. It was a source of quality timber, and when this supply was exhausted provided firewood, while market gardening began to supply the city citizens. The first surveyed plan of the village of 1837 shows Dolphin, Fish and Whale Streets, with Bream and Neptune being added by 1856. RDHS publications include A Randwick Ramble, Part 1, Coogee and Clovelly; Some Market Gardeners in Randwick and Coogee, 1840- 1880’s by Eileen Price, Early Coogee and Randwick; Evidence from the St. Jude’s Case 1861/2 by Lionel Bowen, and Historic Postcards : Coogee Beach by Joseph Waugh – see the Publications page.

Coogee Bay Hotel: first built as private school and became a "seaside retreat", or hotel in 1873.

Coogee Palace: (Dolphin Street, Coogee) This landmark entertainment building was built in the late 1880’s, and surmounted by a 50’ dome; and the surrounding amusement gardens occupied the whole block between Arden and Beach Streets. The indoor swimming pool opened in 1888, and numerous attractions and events came and went over the years. The surviving building is more or less a rebuild of the original. The building now houses the hotel and restaurant business called the Coogee Pavilion (address: 169 Dolphin Street, Coogee).

Coogee Pier : In 1924 construction started by a private company, the Coogee Ocean Pier Company with a project budget of 250,000 pounds, of a English seaside style amusement pier extending 180 metres out from the beach into Coogee Bay. It was officially opened on 24th July 1928 witnessed by a great crowd. The pier included a 1400-seat theatre, a 600 capacity ballroom, a 400-seat restaurant upstairs, shops and a penny arcade. The Pier was no match for Coogee's rough surf which damaged the pier. This damage and diminishing crowds saw it was demolished in 1934.

Coogee Shark Net: Following the completion of Coogee Pier, a shark-proof enclosure was added and officially opened on 16th November 1929, this leading to the introduction of night surfing. Sharks were a major problem at the time, the water said by a local seaman to be “teeming with them”. The net survived until it was demolished for security purposes during World War II.

Coral Sea Park: Maroubra. The World War II Battle of the Coral Sea is commemorated by the name of this park. It is surrounded by Yorktown Parade, Chester Avenue and Midway Drive; these, as well as some adjacent streets, are named after American warships that took part in the battle.

Corana: (211-215 Avoca Street, Randwick), see A-Z topic ‘Randwick Lodge’.

Cunningham, Lou : (1889-1943), farmer and politician, Labor MP for Coogee from 1941 -1948.


Daintrey, Edwin: (1814-1887), solicitor and botanist. He built ‘Aeolia’ in Coogee Bay Road as his family home in 1859, where he lived until his death. His was the second name on the 1858 list of 70 petitioners to have Randwick incorporated as a Municipality (the first being Frederick Barker, Bishop of Sydney).

Darley Road, Randwick: was formerly known as Brunkers Road, and is on the southern borders of Centennial and Queens Parks. It was re-named after Sir Frederick Darley (1830-1910), Chief Justice and Lieutenant-Governor of the NSW colony from 1891 - 1910. It lies on land subdivided under the Centennial Park Lands Act of 1905. Residential development in Darley Road embraces a variety of architectural styles dating from 1905. There are many interesting examples of architecture from Numbers 1 to 155. East of Avoca Street, (opposite Queens Park) there are also several items of interest. Nos. 165 and 167, ‘Kilburn’, were built about 1906 by Edward Ward. Nos. 169-177 are a row of small dwellings known at the ‘Prince of Wales Terrace’ and were built about 1919. The modern flat buildings further east stand on the site of a stone quarry.

Destitute Children's Asylum: (Avoca Street) An extensive sandstone building designed to house 400 children built in 1858 on 60 acres at High Cross Randwick by the Society for the Relief of Destitute Children. A new wing built in 1863 housed a further 400 children. During World War I it was used as a military hospital for wounded and disabled returned servicemen. You can read more about the Asylum in the Society's publication: Destitute Children's Asylum, Randwick 1852-1916 by Frank Doyle & Joy Storey.

Devine, Matilda Mary "Tilly" (née Twiss, 1900 – 1970) was an English Australian organised crime boss. She was involved in a wide range of activities, including sly-grog, razor gangs, and prostitution, and became a famous folk figure in Sydney during the interwar years. She married Australian serviceman James Devine and followed him to Australia in 1920, where she became an infamous figure in Sydney's underworld. She live at 335 Malabar Road, Maroubra for over thirty years, which was the scene of a number of murders over the years.

Dharawal Resting Place – Coast Hospital Cemetery, Little Bay. The northern section of this burial place (1897-1957) is now the only visible part of this site. It was listed on the NSW State Heritage Register (qv) in 2005. See also RDHS publication Aboriginal People of the Eastern Coast of Sydney by Joseph Waugh.

Dive's Brickworks: was established in 1878 by Samuel Dive (1853-1918) near the corner of Bunnerong and Jersey Roads, Matraville. It ceased production in the 1970s and the site is now occupied by town houses.

Donacis: (130 Alison Road, Randwick) see Verona

Durack, Sarah Francis “Fanny”: (1889-1956) Fanny was the first Australian woman to win an Olympic gold medal for swimming, which she achieved at the 1912 Summer Olympics in Stockholm, Sweden, with a record time of 1 minute 22.2 seconds. She learnt to swim at the Coogee swimming baths, competing at local competitions where she met and became close friends with Mina Wylie of Coogee,(qv) who won the Silver medal, finishing just 3 seconds after Fanny. Fanny held her record until 1920, along with many other swimming ‘firsts’. She was inducted into the International Hall of Swimming Fame in 1967, as a posthumous “Honour Swimmer”.


Electricity Substation No. 349: (2S Frances Street, Randwick) After Sydney Council belatedly provided electricity in 1904 to the general public, the Electricity Board began to construct small Sub-stations to relay the power. These were designed to be visually discrete, and blend with the dominant architecture of their area. For this reason, not only are they interesting as individual buildings, they also reflect the favoured designs of the time in their surroundings that are now often lost to modern development. This particular example is No.1792 on the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v.). Another Substation at 60 Bundock Lane is No.935 on the Register.

Emmanuel School: (18-20 Stanley Street, & Avoca Street, Randwick). A Jewish Co-educational school for children from Kindergarten to Senior levels. It is situated high on the North Randwick ridge, and as such is a prominent landmark. The extensive grounds encompass the 1865 ‘Aston Lodge’ designed by Edmund T Blacket and built for James Watkins (1811-1884), merchant and alderman of Randwick Council from 1864. It is No.386 on the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v.).

Ernesleigh: (60 Avoca Street, Randwick, at the Cowper Street Corner) is one of two rendered brick two-storey attached dwellings. It was completed about 1886 by Isaac B. Hodgson, a builder who was elected Mayor of Randwick in 1900-1901. The adjoining house at No.58 is smaller and was named Loidis. In 1887 it was occupied by architect Henry Robinson.


Fenton Place Memorial: At the corner of Anzac Parade and Botany Street, Kingsford is a sandstone monument in the shape of a raised bowl on a stepped base inscribed “In memory of John Fenton, Mayor of Randwick 1916-1917”.

Fire Station: see ‘Randwick Fire Station' and 'Maroubra Fire Station'

First Fleet: Eleven ships commanded by Captain Arthur Phillip which brought the contingent of seamen, marines and some families, and convicts to the first European settlement on the East Coast of Australia.

The Fleet sailed from Portsmouth on 12 May 1787, anchored at Botany Bay on 18 January 1788 & Sydney Cove 26 January 1788.

HMS SiriusCaptain Arthur Phillip520Sixth Rate Warship
HMS Supply Lieutenant H. L. Ball170Armed Tender
AlexanderDuncan Sinclair452Convict Transport
Lady PenrhynWilliam C. Sever333Convict Transport
CharlotteThomas Gilbert335Convict Transport
ScarboroughJohn Marshall430Convict Transport
FriendshipWalton274Convict Transport
Prince of WalesJohn Mason350Convict Transport
FishburnR. Brown378Storeship
Golden GroveSharp375Storeship
BorrowdaleR. Hobson275Storeship

Frenchmans Bay: named by Captain Arthur Phillip to signify the landing place of the French ‘La Perouse’ expedition. (qv)

Frenchmans Road: This road runs from north to south through Randwick city originally connecting the newly founded Sydney with Botany Bay, so called for the French sailors of the La Perouse expedition – although it is believed that it was an established route for the Aboriginal people long before 1788. See RDHS publication The Road to Botany Bay: the story of the Frenchmans’ Road through the Journals of La Perouse and the First Fleet writers by Alec Protos.


Gamble, Midred & Eric : A plaque at the walkway to Yarra Bay next to the Yarra Bay sailing club reads: The Mildred and Eric Gamble Memorial Garden in appreciation of their outstanding service & support to Yarra Bay 16ft Sailing Club. Dedicated 3rd February 1985 by the Hon. Bob Carr M.P. Minister for Planning and Environment.

Giles’ Baths: is a natural rock pool at the foot of the northern headland of Coogee Beach. It was used by male bathers in the 19th century and many called it the ‘Men's Baths’. It continues to be used today as a popular swimming hole for all. It can be accessed from Dunningham Reserve, near where the Bali Memorial stands, via a set of stone stairs. The ‘Giles Gym and Baths’, formerly a prominent feature on Coogee northern headland, was built in 1928 under the management of Oscar Giles. His health centre offered treatments including hot sea baths, electrical treatments, sweat-boxes for weight loss, hydrotherapy and hot sea baths. Sportsmen, racing identities, criminals, police and well known politicians mixed amiably at Giles. When Messrs O'Neill, Motta and Stevens leased and redeveloped the building in 1978 they added squash courts but retained the name Giles. After 1998 the building was left in disrepair and in the interest of public safety the building was demolished in 2000. All that remains is the original portico entry and sections of the wall.

Goolgwai: A steel-built fishing trawler of 271 tons built in Canada in 1919, which ran aground at North Point, Malabar, in thick fog on 29th May 1955. The crew of eleven and their cat survived, although the cargo of fish and the ship were written off; a week later she broke up in a heavy storm and sank. See also A-Z topic ‘Shipwrecks’.

Gordon Terrace: (Gordon Street, Randwick) was built in 1885 and consists of 13 attached dwellings. Gordon Terrace and a similar development in adjacent Waverley Street are among the few remaining examples of “row housing” in Randwick.

Gower Galtees (8-10 Coogee Bay Road, Randwick) is a striking example of Art Deco/Ocean Liner architecture built by Miss Ettie Rowan in 1940 at a cost of £18000. Harold Taylor was the builder.

Grotto Capri, Restaurant : (97-101 Anzac Parade, Kensington) was an Italian seafood restaurant first opened in 1955 that was modelled on the famous Blue Grotto, on the island of Capri in Italy. Its exterior and interior were decorated with rocks, shells, coral and coloured lights to recreate a gaudy undersea wonderland. It was featured as a set for movies such as Muriel's Wedding and television shows such as Underbelly. It closed in 2010.


Henry Head Fort: Henry Head Battery was constructed between 1892-1895 and operated until 1910 and later was re-utilised during WWII to defend the approaches to Cape Banks. It is located on the northern headland of Botany Bay between Congwong Bay and Cruwee Cove.

Hereward: was a steel hulled clipper of 1513 tons built in Glasgow in 1877. During a voyage from Surabaya to Newcastle, it encountered a gale on the night of 5th May 1898 and ran aground at the north end of Maroubra Beach. After several salvage attempts, it finally broke up on the 9th December 1898. See also; NSW State Heritage Register; see also A-Z topic ‘Shipwrecks’.

Heritage: See; NSW State Heritage Register; also Randwick Council Heritage List.

Heritage Plaques: In 1987 the Randwick Bicentennial Community Committee recommended placing informative plaques on buildings and sites throughout the City that had significant relevance to the area’s history. From an extensive list 47 sites were chosen to be thus recognised. The Council also published a book in 1990 giving fuller details of each place than was possible on the limited space of each plaque. This information is now on Randwick Council’s website (see our ‘Links’ page), and can be found under “About Council – Historic Places –Plaques”.

Hooper Cottage: (Figtree Avenue, Randwick) is a small stone Georgian style cottage built in late 1848 by George Hooper (1816-1888) on part of a 5.2 hectare block he purchased for market gardens and orchards. It is believed to be the second oldest house in Randwick. Hooper served on Randwick Council as one of the first two Auditors, both elected unopposed in 1859. He was also elected as an Alderman in 1861 and served until May 1864. He features prominently with other early market gardeners, such as James Hooper and George Dodery in the RDHS publication Some Market Gardeners in Randwick and Coogee, 1840’s to 1880, by Eileen Price. ‘Hooper Cottage’ is No.87 on the NSW State Heritage Register.

Hygeia: (211-215, Avoca Street, Randwick), see A-Z topic “Randwick Lodge’.


Inglis, Walter "Sam" : Walter Alexander "Sam" Inglis (1874-1940) was a well-known patron of Giles Baths who regularly taught young boys to swim and box. In honour of his service a memorial sun dial mounted on a stone was erected within the grounds of the Baths in 1940. When the building was demolished in 2000, the memorial could be viewed by the public as part of Dunningham Reserve.

Ivo Rowe Pool : (end of Bunya Parade, South Coogee) - A Randwick City Council plaque at the pool says that it was named after a local identity Ivo Rowe and that in 1965 an APEX club project enlarged the pool by filling in a channel. Ivo Rowe lived at 13 Evelyn Street, Coogee until his death in 1961. Older local residents say that he used to help maintain the pool.

Ivo Claude Leslie Rowe was born 22 January, 1887 at Wagga Wagga, son of James Rowe (b. Madron, Cornwall, 25th October 1845) and Agnes Rowe (nee Campbell Glass 1847 – 1937) who were married in Victoria. Ivo was the youngest of ten children. He married Ellen Coleman in 1911 at Paddington. Their first daughter, Merle Isabella was born at Rockdale in 1915. Other daughters Nancy and Jean followed. By 1930, according to Sands Directories, the Rowe family was living at 13 Evelyn Street, Coogee. Ivo Rowe enlisted in the Australian Army (Militia) as a Captain in the Ordinance Corps during World War Two. No 13 Evelyn Street, then a Californian bungalow style home, was sold in 2012 and has since been rebuilt.


Jane Street Theatre (Corner of Jane and Middle Streets, Randwick) built in 1887 as St Jude's Mission Church. It was used for live theatre from 1966 to 1981 and is now a private residence.

Jessie Stuart Broomfield Bus Terminus reserve, La Perouse - is grey granite pillar with bowls for humans and animals. When Jessie Stuart Broomfield died in 1935, her will not only bequeathed that money be distributed to various homes and institutions for dogs in the city of Sydney, but that that drinking fountains and troughs for dogs be erected with her name inscribed on them. Another fountain for dogs paid for by Broomfield's bequest is located in Ford Park, Strathfield South and another, constructed in 1941 by the Municipal Council of Sydney was near the northern corner of Driver and Macarthur Avenues, Moore Park.

Joey Flinn Memorial : (Snape Park, Maroubra), was built in 1955 and commemorates young Joseph Flinn who died when struck by a cricket ball in 1947. The Catholic Weekly of February 13 1947 reported: A young Catholic cricketer, Joseph Flinn, of Snape Street, Kingsford, was killed when struck heavily over the heart by the ball during a game at Wicket 38 ... Flinn was batting with Kensington United, a Moore Park association team. Catholic Young Men's Cricket Association teams playing on other wickets at the time stood in silence for a minute. Requiem Mass was celebrated at Holy Family Church, Maroubra.

Jubilee Fountain: (corner of Alison Road and Avoca Street, Randwick) A 1909 sandstone fountain consisting of four semi-circular bowls and surmounted by an obelisk, was erected to commemorate the incorporation of Randwick Municipality on the 22 February 1959. Together with the former Randwick Post Office it is listed as No.1409 in the NSW State Heritage Register.

Juverna: (50 Cook Street, Randwick) A three-storey, Art Deco block of flats built by the Rowen family, who also owned Gower Galtees in Coogee Bay Road. This block of flats was submitted for approval to Randwick Council in 1925. Miss Ettie Rowan is listed as the owner in the rates books by 1930; the six flats cost £6,000 to build.


SS Kelloe: The SS Kelloe was an iron screw steamship of 340 tons build in Sunderland in 1866. She sailed to Australia in 1891 when purchased as a collier by the Wallarah Coal Company. She collided with the wooden steamship Dunmore early on the morning of 12th May 1902, about 1.6 kilometres off Little Bay. The crew was rescued by the Dunmore which, although damaged, was able to make its way to beach on Kurnell Beach in Botany Bay. There was no loss of life. See also A-Z topic ‘Shipwrecks’.

Kensington: This suburb in the west of the city originated in 1889 by a private company, the Australian Cities Investment Corporation. The land – known as the Lachlan Mill Estate - had been in the possession of the Cooper family, and the inheritor, Daniel Cooper, after selling the land to the Corporation, had returned to England, living in the prestigious London suburb of Kensington. A subsidiary company, the Kensington Freehold Corporation Ltd, was formed, with the intention that the new ‘model suburb’ should resemble its London counterpart as far as possible. The full story can be found in the RDHS publication, Monograph No. 2; Kensington; A Model Suburb , by J.F. McMahon.

Kensington Racecourse: This smaller racecourse was designed for the use of ‘ponies’. It was also used at various times by the military for mustering camps and other purposes. See the RDHS publication Kensington Racecourse; 1890-1942 by Joseph Waugh. For other local pony racecourses

Kingsford used to be known as South Kensington, was named in honour famous aviator Sir Charles Kingsford-Smith (1897–1935) The name was in use by 1937.

Kingsley, James "Grafter"


La Perouse: named after the explorer Compte Jean Francois de Galaup de LA PEROUSE (1741-1788) who commanded a French exploration expedition of two ships. They arrived off Botany Bay on 24th January 1788 (six days after the arrival of the First Fleet), but because of bad weather did not enter Botany Bay until 26th January 1788.

La BoussolMerchant Ship commissioned into French Navy
AstrolobeMerchant Ship commissioned into French Navy

They sailed from Botany Bay on 10 March 1788 and no more was heard of them for forty years until remains of the ships' wreckage was found in on Tucopia Island near the New Hebrides Group. See RDHS publication La Perouse: Why he came to the Pacific by Geoffrey Lewis, and A Randwick Ramble: La Perouse to Maroubra.

La Perouse Mission Church: (1894-1930) This was the mother church of what became the United Aboriginal Mission, that spread throughout Australia. Nearby rock carvings were made to celebrate the opening of the Harbour Bridge in 1932. The site is No.1893 on the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v.)

Little Bay: This suburb was officially named by Randwick Council in October 1960.

Little Bay Cemetery: Those who died of infectious diseases in the early years of the quarantine Coastal Hospital, (later Prince Henry Hospital), were buried at this site thought to date from c.1881. Its location, between the present St Michael's and N.S.W. Golf Courses was within the southern boundary of the original hospital reserve. See RDHS publication Deaths at the Coast Hospital and Burials at Little Bay 1881-1952 by Joseph Waugh. See also A-Z topic ‘Cemeteries’.

Long Bay Cemetery: See ‘Randwick General Cemetery’

Long Bay Prison: (1250 Anzac Parade, Malabar) This covers a site of 30 hectares, and dates from 1898 when the Women's Reformatory was begun and completed in 1901. A State Penitentiary for male prisoners was completed in 1914. Additional prison and health facilities have been constructed over the years. After the Silverwater Women's Correctional Centre was opened in 1970, the women’s prison was vacated and converted into a medium security prison for men. The controversial supermax facility known as Katingal, dubbed "the electronic zoo", was opened in 1975 to house troublesome prisoners but was closed and demolished following concerns about security and fair treatment of inmates. In the early days trams carried building materials and prisoners from the courts to within the prison walls. See also RDHS publication Recollections of Long Bay by Murielle Leonard. The complex (now known as a Correctional Centre) is No.810 in the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v.)


Mahon Pool: (Marine Parade, Maroubra) - was built in 1937 and named after Alderman Patrick Mahon.

Maidstone : (1a Waltham Street, Coogee) behind St Brigid's Catholic Church was built between 1887 and 1989. It was purchased by the Catholic Church in 1922. It has been restored by the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart as their provincial house. The two storey mansion features corner bay windows under a metal cupola and an impressive arched entrance.

Marcellin College Group : (Alison Road, Randwick opposite Alison Park) - occupies part of the land purchased in 1851 by Samuel Hebelwhite, a member of the first Randwick Council of 1859. Nos. 191 (Seabird) and 195 Alison Road (Glanmire) are impressive two storey Victorian villas retaining their decorative ironwork. H. S. Gibson, then owner of the land, built Seabird in 1893 and Glanmire in 1896. Standing next to Glanmire is the Ignatius Wing opened in 1934 and distinguished by its arched cloisters. Behind the Ignatius Wing was a 2-storey stone residence built in 1854 by Hebelwhite and renamed Greenstead by Gibson which in turn was named was named for a place near Colchester, Essex. Greenstead was used as part of the school from 1923 ad demolished in 1981. Adjoining the Ignatius Wing is Greenstead Hall built in 1923 as the first purpose-built school building on the site. Glanmire was acquired by the School in 1923 and Seabird in 1967. Greenstead Lane runs on the eastern boundary of the School.

Malabar: This suburb is now named for the MV Malabar which was wrecked on Miranda Point, Long Bay, in April 1931. Although a passenger ship, there was no loss of life - apart from the ship’s cat. The name was adopted following 1933 petition by local residents. Governor Phillip referred to the long indentation as ‘Long Bay’, with ‘Little Bay’ just to the south. In 1899, the nearby settlement was named the village of Brand after Robert Brand, Governor of NSW, 1895-1899. The Aboriginal place name was Boora. See also A-Z topic ‘Shipwrecks’.

Malabar Road, Maroubra No. 335: was the home of of notorius Sydney underworld figure, "Tilly" Devine for over 30 years from the late 1920s and the scene of a number of a murders or violent deaths including George Leonard "Gunner" Gaffney who was shot and killed by her husband Jim Devine. The accidental shooting of taxi driver Frederick Herbert Moffitt also occurred on 16 June 1931 on the Torrington Road corner of the property. A second storey was added the house in the late 1960s and it appeared to remain vacant for over forty years until it was subdived and sold to new owners in 2009. New homes now stand on the two subdivided blocks.

Maroubra Junction: previously known as "Lillyville" was named in 1923 - on the junction of the tram lines.

Maroubra Fire Station: (325 Maroubra Road) is a two storey brick building with symmetrical facade and a hipped and gabled tiled roof constructed in 1924 to the design of architects Spain & Cosh.

Matraville: A suburb to the south of the City, it was named after American born James Mario Matra (1746-1806) who was a midshipman on Captain Cook’s ship Endeavour. He was an enthusiastic supporter of Joseph Banks’ “botanising” on that expedition, and also of Banks’ later promotion of Australia to the British Government as being an ideal place for a new British Colony. It has even been postulated that it was Matra’s glowing reports that finally tipped the balance of the decision in Australia’s favour. After WWI a Soldiers’ Settlement was developed, as a planned ‘garden village’, with 93 houses built to accommodate disabled war veterans. It is now a memorial Reserve.

McGill, Walter: (1826-1881) McGill was a talented sculptor who became well known for many statues that adorned Government buildings. Born in Edinburgh, he spent years in the Maitland district, moving to Sydney in the mid-sixties – he apparently lived in Belmore Road in 1875, around the time of the unveiling of his statue of Captain Cook (q.v.) He produced many other sculptures, including another fountain c.1865 which was installed near the old entrance to the Domain, Sydney, and a model of the Zig-zag railway at Lithgow, which was exhibited in Melbourne. At the time of his death he was working on designs for the General Post Office.

See RDHS publication Walter McGill: a colonial sculptor 1826-1881 by Christie Hamilton.

McIver’s Women’s Baths: (Grant Reserve, Coogee) These are the only swimming baths in continuous use in NSW – possibly in Australia - to have been reserved for the exclusive use of women and their younger children. Thought to have been in use since the 1830’s. They are listed as No. 1869 on the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v.)

Minmi: was a was a steel hulled steamship of 1455 tons built at Meadowside, Glasgow in 1927. She was being used as a collier between Melbourne and Newcastle when on 13th May 1937 she ran aground and broke up at Cape Banks in heavy seas and fog at about 10pm. By morning the ship had broken up and two members of the crew perished. Parts of the wreck are still visible today. See also A-Z topic ‘Shipwrecks’.

Montrose : (179 Alison Road, Randwick), was built in 1887 as a residence W E Smith, a stationer. This high victorian house has been converted to a retail building and now houses a liquor shop.

Myers, Jack (1918 -1962) & The Atomic Motors: Jack Myers was one of the best known motor racing drivers in N.S.W from the 1940s through to his death in 1962 aged 44. He ran the Lukey Mufflers agency at 491 Anzac Parade Kingsford known as Atomic Motors He was killed on January 21st 1962 when is car overturned during a race at the Catlina Park Racing Circuit at Katoomba. One of Myers' cars, a Cooper open sports car with a Holden Engine is on display at the National Motor Museum at Birdwood, SA.


Newmarket: (Young Street, Randwick) built in 1861 by John Dillon as the Newmarket Hotel. Home, until recently, or the Inglis thoroughbred yearling sales business, whose site is being redeveloped as a residential apartment development.

NSW State Heritage Register: In 1998 at a meeting of all Australian governments it was decided to re-organise the responsibility for protecting heritage items into three tiers of National, State and Local authority control. Registers were to be maintained of various categories, which include entities ranging from streets to single buildings, landscapes to single trees – there is also a Register of shipwrecks. Randwick City LGA currently has 29 items listed in the State Heritage Register, including the Aboriginal site at La Perouse, all of which are included in this A-Z.

See also Randwick Council – Heritage List.

North Randwick: the settlement history of this district is fully described in the RDHS publication The Residential Precinct of North Randwick by Peter McDowell, with numerous maps, subdivision plans and details of the residents who developed the area.

Nugal Hall: (16-18 Milford Street, Randwick) is a gothic style mansion designed by Mortimer Lewis and built from local sandstone in 1853 for Alexander McArthur, a shipping magnate and MLA. It features a magnificent staircase under a stained-glass dome. From 1883 to 1903 it was the home of Dr. Fred Tidswell, the proprietor of the Coogee Bay Hotel. Other notable residents have included the German and French consuls prior to World War I. After the War it was used as a hospital for Australian military personnel. Mrs Nell Pillars founded Randwick and District Historical Society in 1957 while residing at Nugal Hall. It is No. 173 on the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v.).


Ocean View: (370 Alison Road, Coogee) is an Edwardian style mansion c.1916 built for and occupied by the Wirth Circus family until c.2010. See Randwick Rambles; Coogee and Clovelly

Oceanic Hotel : (corner Arden & Carr Streets, Coogee) was built in 1928 covering four floors with many bars. It was demolished in 1987 for a new hotel development.

Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church: (Avoca Street, Randwick) Designed by Sheerin and Hennessy in the Gothic Revival style, it is distinguished with a tall spire, and stained glass windows from Toures, France. The foundation stone was laid on the 5th June 1887 and the church officially opened by Cardinal Moran on 6th May 1888. Prior to the church being built, the local Catholic community had worshipped in a small wooden building erected on the same site, which also served as a school.


Pearce, Simeon Henry: (1821-1886) The ‘founding father’ of Randwick (qv), which he named for his birthplace, a small village in Gloucestershire, England. Pearce and the first and six-times Mayor of Randwick and was an inflential figure in early Randwick. The RDHS library has a great deal of original material on Pearce, his family.

Pioneers Park Malabar was named in 1966 in honour of local pioneers. The land was once a swamp from which a stream flowed to Malabar Beach, but land-fill has created the present recreational ground.

Post Office, Coogee: was first located in Coogee Bay Road in the late 19th century, then called Belmore Road. By the 1920s the Postmaster General's Department purchased a site at 120 Brook Street where the Post Office was located until March 2018, when it moved to Vicar Street, Coogee. The old red-brick, 1960s style building was demolished in December 2018.

Post Office, Maroubra: was originally located on the north-eastern corner or Maroubra Road and Anzac Parade. It was relocated to the Pacific Square shopping mall in about 2005.

Post Office, Randwick: The first official post office in Randwick was opened on the corner of Belmore Road and Short Street in 1878. It was later located in the building on the north-west corner of Alison Road and Avoca Street (124 Avoca Street), an impressive two-storeyed Federation style building completed in 1897. The building is now owned by the Sydney Roosters (Eastern Suburbs Rugby League Club), which has donated the building for use by the Ted Noffs Foundation. The current Randwick Post Office is located in the Royal Randwick shopping centre. The former Randwick Post Office (Avoca Street) and the associated Jubilee Fountain are No 1409 on the State Heritage Register (qv).

Presbyterian Church, Randwick: (162 Alison Road, corner of Cook St) The church was designed by the English architect John Sulman in a Victorian Academic style, rather than the Gothic revival popular in the 1880’s. It opened in March 1890. Sulman had intended there would be two towers, but these were not built. Sulman had a distinguished career, including advising on the development of Canberra. He was knighted in 1924. This building is No. 1777 on the State Heritage Register (qv).


Quambi Street: Became part of Anzac Parade on 14 June 1934.


Radio 2UE. Carl Vincent Stevenson (1878 - 1963) commenced radio broadcasting from his home Faraday at 2 Everett Street Maroubra in 1922. When he was granted a broadcast licence in 1924 he chose the call letters 2EU (after Electrical Utilities, the company owned by him) but later changed it to 2UE for ease of pronunciation. He later moved to Radio House at 615 George Street, Sydney. His first radio broadcast under the 2UE call sign was on 26th January 1925.

Raleigh Park: (Todman Avenue, Kensington) used to be a centre of the tobacco industry and was named after Sir Walter Raleigh who introduced tobacco to England. The 13 hectre site was purchased from G. F. Todman with the first factory building opening in 1913. In 1926 the heritage listed administration building designed by architects Joseland & Gilling was completed and still stands today. A number of companies shared the site in the early days, but eventually the firm of W.D & H.O Wills occupied the whole site. The factory was closed in 1989 and the site was developed for housing.

Randwick: was named after the village of the same name in Gloucestershire England, the birthplace of Simeon Henry Pearce. Pearce arrived in Sydney on Christmas Eve, 1841. By 1847 he was able to purchase land between the present High and Belmore Streets, Randwick and build his home, to which he gave the name Blenheim House, which was also the name of a mansion house close to the English village of Randwick. Pearce promoted the district by various means as a desirable place for the well-heeled to erect country residences - improving the roads, attracting the then Bishop of Sydney, Frederick Barker, to the area, and encouraging the choice of Randwick for the new buildings of the Childrens’ Asylum. He was one of the prime movers behind the November 1858 petition signed by seventy electors to incorporate Randwick as a Municipality, which eventuated in February 1859. He also petitioned that the Council consist of a Chairman and Councillors, rather than Mayor and Aldermen, and so became Randwick’s first ‘Chairman’ following the first Council elections on 29th March 1859. Six councillors were elected from a nominated field of nine, the other five being William Ellis, William Hanson, Samuel Hebblewhite, Charles Kidman and John Thompson. The necessary two auditors were Dennis Kearney and George Hooper, elected unopposed. The election results were announced at High Cross by the Returning Officer, the Honourable John Dickson, of Rockwood, Coogee, with 72 votes having been received from a total of 104 eligible voters. In 1990, almost 150 years after Simeon Pearce first arrived in Sydney, Randwick was accorded the status of a City.

Randwick & District Historical Society – Past Presidents & Buildings: For brief details of Presidents to end 2006 see Past Presidents of the Society Since its founding in June 1957 at a meeting at Nugal Hall, attended by forty members of the public, the Society has occupied the following places; Nugal Hall , Milford Street (1957-1963), Bare Island Fort, Botany Bay (1963-1976), The Old Bank building, 200 Alison Road (1979-1982), Hearne’s shop – built c.1894- 194 Avoca Street (1982-1987), Sandgate, 128 Belmore Road (1987-1992), Randwick Town Hall (1992-2007). The move to the Bowen Library building was finalised in May 2007. See also R&DHS Past Homes .

Randwick Council – Heritage List: Various entities that are considered to have significant heritage value locally, but do not qualify as being of State importance are monitored by the City Council. Under the State Heritage Local Environment Plan – LEP - (Gazetted in 1993), each local authority maintains a Register of these items, which can be anything from a tree to a whole precinct, as well as built items. Randwick lists over 400 items. Places within Randwick City which are listed in Schedule 5 of the Randwick Local Environmental Plan may be accessed through the State Heritage Inventory online database.

Randwick City’s Suburbs: Apart from Randwick itself, there are twelve official suburbs. These are Centennial Park; Chiefley; Clovelly; Coogee; Kensington; Kingsford; La Perouse; Little Bay; Lurline Bay; Malabar; Maroubra; Matraville; Phillip Bay; and South Coogee. The RDHS library has a large collection of material relating to each suburb and their associated districts, much of it original, such as early photos, maps, property deeds, newspaper cuttings and correspondence from present and past residents. See also our publications page for relevant books.

Randwick Fire Station: (6 The Avenue, Randwick) A Federation style building constructed c1908. Prior to this, the Randwick area had been intermittently served by a volunteer brigade formed in 1886, and assistance by brigades at Waverley and Paddington when needed. After years of requests the MP for Randwick, Mr David Storey, was able to announce in 1906 that £2,500 of Government funding had been allocated by the Metropolitan Fire Brigades Board for a permanent building. A site opposite the Children's Asylum was rejected, as were others. The first entry in the Sands Directory of 1889 (for 1888) lists the Fire Brigade Station in The Avenue, with Christopher G. Digby as the Officer in Charge. He was followed the next year by Thomas Nance. The engine was powered by trained horses, since as a sub-station Randwick was not eligible to be supplied with a ‘Steamer’.

Randwick General Cemetery: (Malabar Road) This is located at the southern end of Arden Street, South Coogee, and was originally known as the Long Bay Cemetery as it lay alongside the Long Bay Road – now the Malabar Road. It was dedicated in 1873 for the use of all denominations, following concerns about the proximity of St Jude’s cemetery to the town water supply and dictates that St Jude’s be used for Anglican burials only. For an index to burials and some biographies see RDHS publications Randwick General Cemetery: Burials from 1874 - 1983 by Warwick Adams, and Randwick General Cemetery by Ian Cripps. See also A-Z topic ‘Cemeteries’.

Randwick Lodge: (211-215 Avoca St, High Cross, Randwick). Now a hotel, it was built as two large Victorian semi-detached houses named ‘Corana’ (sometimes spelt as ‘Corona’) and ‘Hygeia’. The site was bought by Judge Thomas Callaghan in 1854, but he built Avoca in Milford Street as his residence. His widow, Eliza (nee Milford, hence the street name) and daughter had the houses built on the vacant land in 1893. Probably due to the economic depression at that time, the houses were frequently unoccupied in the first few years. The building is part of the High Cross precinct, a Randwick Council heritage area; and as Corana and Hygeia is No.454 on the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v.) The houses are now a boutique hotel.

Randwick Post Office: see ‘Post Offices’

Randwick’s ‘Sister Cities’: Six very different communities have become linked with Randwick city under this International movement to promote goodwill among the world’s citizens. These are the village of Randwick, Gloucestershire, England (Population 400); the town of Albi, Southern France (Population 52,500) and the Island of Castellorizo, Greece (Population 600) – for their historical relevance. The other three are the Chinese city of Hangzhou (Population over 8 ½ million), and two NSW country towns, Narrabri on the Northwest Slopes (Population 13,500) and Temora in the Riverina (Population 6.500). For comparison, the Australian Bureau of Statistics records 145,822 people living in Randwick City.

Randwick Town Hall : (Avoca Street, Randwick) was built in 1882 and designed by architects Blackman and Parkes in Victorian Italiante style. Later additions have been added including the impressive domed clock central tower above the central portico. Modern additions to the south and west accommodate the Council Chambers and administrative offices.

Rathven: (43 St Mark's Road, Randwick) Built about 1887 by George Raffan, a builder from Scotland. Its Victorian Italianate style featured a central tower and extensive landscaped gardens. From 1927 to 1976 it was occupied by Sydney Grammar School, and is now a private residence. This building is No. 139 on the NSW State Heritage Register (qv).

Rene, Roy (1891 - 1954) : born Harry van der Sluys in Adelaide, was an Australian comedian and vaudevillian best known for his bawdy character Mo McCackie. He was arguably the best known Australian comedian of the 20th century. Rene lived at 29 Cottenham Avenue, Kensington where he died aged 63 on 22nd November 1954.

Ritz Theatre: (43 St Paul’s Street, Randwick) This cinema in ‘The Spot’ area of Randwick is one of the few remaining Art Deco cinemas in Sydney that is still being used for its original purpose, retaining many of the original features. As such, it is listed as No.348 in the NSW State Heritage Register.

Ross Jones Memorial Pool was built in 1947. It is located next to the Surf Life Saving Club (SLSC) at the south end of Coogee Beach. It was named after Roscoe Samuel Webster Jones, a Sydney solicitor, and former East Ward Alderman on Randwick Council. He was involved in many voluntary and sporting associations including Coogee Surf Club.

Roslyn : (29 Arcadia Street, Coogee but faces Beach Street) - is a magnificent two storey 'Boom Style' mansion that was built in 1886 for Charles Thomas Saxon, a timber merchant. A later owner, Mr V. A. McCauley, subdivided the land in front of the house eliminating its grand entrance from Beach Street.

Royal Hotel: (2 Perouse Road, Randwick) Built as an hotel for Thomas Browne in 1887, it was designed by John Kirkpatrick. The two-storey Victorian building features decorative wrought-iron balconies. Browne was granted his first licence (a Billiard Licence) in September 1887.


St Brigid's Catholic Church: (Brook Street, Coogee) A Romanesque style church designed by architect Alfred Bates, based on the Roman Catholic Cathedral at Westminster, London. Built in 1921, the dominant feature is the landmark tall square tower. It is embellished with banded brickwork and intricate cement ornamentation; major restoration work began in 2001.

St Helena : (western side of Lurline Street at Torrington Road, Maroubra) was the home of John Norton (1858 -1916), the publisher of the Truth newspaper. It was said to be "packed to the rafters" with Napoleon Bonaparte memorabilia.

St Jude’s Anglican Church: (Avoca Street, Randwick) - Victorian Gothic church built in 1865 on land donated by Simeon Pearce, with the design based on St. John’s, Randwick, Gloucestershire where he was christened. Some of its interior fittings were designed by Edmund Blacket and the church contains a full ‘ring-of-eight’ bells. The first bells were of cast steel, installed in 1864 from the foundry of Naylor Vickers, Sheffield, England. The use of steel was an experiment that did not withstand the Australian coastal climate, and the bells eventually needed total replacement. The current bells were installed in 2000. The tower had been heightened in 1877 to accommodate the clock and the transepts were added in 1889. The Church and associated buildings are No. 12 on the NSW State Heritage Register (qv)

St Jude’s Cemetery: (Avoca and Frances Streets, Randwick) The first burial was in August 1858, before the present church was constructed. Amid considerable controversy, in 1867 this cemetery was declared, amongst other restrictions, to be solely for Anglican burials. For the next six years other denominations had to bury their ‘departed’ in such distant places as Rookwood until the Randwick General Cemetery became available in 1874. For details on the history and some biographies see RDHS publication The Living Amongst the Dead … by Joseph Waugh, and for an index to burials from 1858 to c. mid-1950’ see St Jude’s Cemetery, Randwick by John Lumsden. See also A-Z topic ‘Cemeteries’.

St Jude's Fountain: (on the corner of Alison Road and Church Street, Randwick) was sculpted in sandstone by Walter McGill (q.v.). Randwick Council installed the fountain in 1866 over a spring to supply drinking water for horses and people. The stone urn surmounting the fountain is a replica commissioned by Randwick Council in 1983.

Sandgate: (128 Belmore Road, Randwick) A two-storey sandstone building dating from c.1879, and associated with Simeon Pearce’s family. Built as a residence, it was later used as a Red Cross run facility for war veterans. Randwick & District Historical Society Inc. occupied the building from 1987 - 1992. Former names include Kilkerran and Fenton. It is No.67 on the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v.)

Sands Directories: These were published for Melbourne and then Sydney from 1857 until 1932, initially for the cities and then gradually including various country listings. The City of Sydney website now has an on-line set of the whole Sydney / NSW series, which is fully searchable. The main thing to bear in mind is that events listed in each edition generally relate to the previous year; the information was collected by agents, then had to be collated, typeset, printed and distributed – without the help of computers! This explains why people are often listed for a year – sometimes more - after their year of death. Also note that when searching for a person, you may find them listed three or more times; at their place of residence, in the surnames alphabetical list and in various occupation lists – it is worth checking all listings as the information does vary, a vital piece of information may only be found in one source. But beware – errors do occur. For example, in the 1890 edition, some residents in Ocean Street, Clovelly suburb, were transported to Ocean Street, Bondi in the alphbetical list! A final tip is that you can make a handy A4 print of any page of interest, which is helpful if you are using several pages at a time, or for an ongoing project. Just note the page number which will show up on the ‘ghost bar’ that appears, go to ‘Print’ and set to landscape, then tick the page number circle and type in the page number required. You can access Sands on the City of Sydney Archives website. See also Sands Sydney Directory: an Introduction to its Use for more information.

Second Fleet: Term applied to a second group of six ships carrying convicts and supplies to the new settlement at Sydney Cove and which also carried the first detachments of the New South Wales Corps.

SailedArrived Sydney
GuardianWarship converted to StoreshipSept. 1789Wrecked
JustinianSupply ShipJanuary 179020th June 1790
Lady JulianaConvict Transport29th July 17893rd June 1790
SurprizeConvict TransportDecember 178926th June 1790
NeptuneConvict TransportDecember 178928th June 1790
ScarboroughConvict TransportDecember 178928th June 1790

Shark Arm Murder Case : In 1935 the Coogee Palace Aquarium became a public sensation when a three metre tiger shark caught off Coogee Beach by fisherman Albert Hobson (whose brother was the proprietor of the Aquarium) was put on public display. While spectators looked on (25th April 1935), the shark coughed up a human arm. Police used fingerprints and a tatoo of two facing boxers to identify the arm as belonging to small-time criminal Jim Smith who had been missing for some time. Two characters emerged as key figures in the investigation: master forger, Patrick “Paddy” Brady; and Reginald Holmes, a well-off churchgoing businessman who ran a family boat-building business at Lavender Bay. Police arrested Brady for murder, but the case against him fell apart when Holmes, who had agreed to give evidence against Brady, died of gunshot wounds in mysterious circumstances at Dawes Point on 11th June 1935. Brady died in 1965 always claiming innocence. The case is explored in two books: (1) Vince Kelly. The Shark Arm Case. Angus & Robertson 1963 and (2) Alex Castles. The Shark Arm Murders. Wakefield Press, SA, 1995.

Shipwrecks: (along the Randwick coastline) see Belbowri, Goolgwai, Hereward, Kelloe, Malabar, Minmi and Tekapo. This is also the subject of an RDHS Monograph (No.3), Some Shipwrecks in the Randwick Municipality, Trevor T Bignell, 1986. See the Publications page for further details. See also; NSW State Heritage Register.

Sister Cities: Randwick City has six sister (or twinned) communities – not all cities! See Randwick: Sister Cities.

Smithfield Grange : (88 Brook Street, Coogee) was built about 1883 by John Starkey a famous soft drink manufacturer who was also an Alderman on Randwick Council. This imposing Victorian mansion with its eastern tower has been converted into flats. Smithfield Avenue to the north of the building leads west to Bardon Park. According to early records, this reserve was once known as Smithfield Park, being dedicated in June, 1886.

South Coogee: This suburb was originally known as Coogee Park following the subdivision of land there in 1883. It was a relatively isolated coastal area in the Coogee sand hills. Richard Colonna-Close (1840-1905), a barrister, was an early resident.

Star Drive-in Cinema : (4 Wassell Street, Matraville) opened in August 1958 and closed in 8th August, 1984 with Exterminator being the last film shown. Its site was used as a set during 1985 to film the movie Dead-End Drive-In.

Stone's Milk Bar: Opened c.1922 at 155 Dolphin Street by William "Pop" and Bridget Stones until Bridget's death in 1948. It was a favourite community meeting place and its Sunday night concerts were a local institution. It was famous for its milkshakes and fruit cocktails. Many famous entertainers such as Nellie Small, Tessie Hamilton and Richard Grey began their careers at Stones. During the Second World War, American servicemen frequented the milk bar. Prince Phillip also visited it when in Sydney as a naval officer. It continued as teen cabaret in 1950s and 60s with artists such as Johnny O'Keefe. In 1967 the premises were sold and converted into a Hungarian restaurant. It then became the Coogee Comedy Theatre Restaurant with a regular program of entertainment.

Storey, Sir David, (1856-1924) businessman and politician.

Struggletown: name give to any area bordered by Botany, Middle, Young, Barker and Middle (both sides) Streets Randwick. Simeon Pearce built tiny stone cottages in the area to house his workmen in the 1850s and 1860s.


Tay Reserve: at the junction of Alison Road and Anzac Parade is an open space reserve on the site of the Old Toll Bar which provided revenue for local road maintenance from 1854 to 1894. The toll was one shilling for a 4-wheeled wagon drawn by 2 horses and a halfpenny for each pig or goat conveyed. A Randwick Road Toll House stood on the reserve and was demolished in 1909. The site is now administered by the Centennial Park and Moore Park Trust.

Tayar : (1 The Avenue, Randwick), two storey Victorian Italianate house built in c1900.

SS Tekapo: The SS Tekapo was an iron steamship of 1544 tons built in Greenock, Scotland in 1881 and originally named Cape Clear. The ship ran aground on the southern end of Maroubra during heavy fog on the morning of 16th May, 1899. After salvage attempts, it broke up on 31st May, 1899. See also A-Z topic ‘Shipwrecks’.

The Spot: Just to the south east of Randwick, this area was originally known as Irish Town, as it was settled from the 1870s by the Walsh family and others of Irish background – although the Scottish Stewarts were also another dominant family. The present name may have originated from a local shop which bore that name. See the RDHS publication The Spot; 1850-1890 by Eileen Price.

Third Fleet: Term applied to a third group of eleven ships carrying convicts and supplies to the new settlement at Sydney Cove. Around 1800 convicts survived the trip and landed at Sydney.

Type of Ship
QueenConvict Transport
AtlanticConvict Transport
William and AnnConvict Transport
BritanniaConvict Transport
MatildaConvict Transport
SalamanderConvict Transport
AlbermarleConvict Transport
Mary AnneConvict Transport
Admiral BarringtonConvict Transport
ActiveConvict Transport
GorgonStore Ship

All the ships left England in early 1791. The first to arrive in Sydney was the Mary Ann on the 9th July 1791 and the last one arrived on 17th October 1791.


University of New South Wales - Most of the campus lies within Kensington and covers the site of the Kensington Racecourse established in 1891, where smaller breeds known as Ponies raced. The racecourse was used as a military camp during World Wars I & II. The New South Wales University of Technology was incorporated by Act of the Parliament of New South Wales in 1949 and it began operating from the site. In 1958 the University's name was changed to the University of New South Wales.

V   Vocalist Theatre: Maroubra Junction was located on the west side of Anzac Parade between Maroubra and Boyce Roads. It opened in April 1939 and was initially independently operated. By 1951 it had been taken over by the Eastern Suburbs Cinemas chain, closed in 1961 and converted into an ice skating rink, which operated for several years. Eventually the building was demolished and the Picadilly shopping arcade was built on the site.

Venice: (66 Frenchman's Road, Randwick) was built about 1890 on land subdivided from the St Mark's Glebe Estate. Contemporary maps from 1891 show a completed house which was occupied by a series of different residents until 1920 when it was divided into a number of flats. This impressive late Victorian residence with Tudor and Gothic influences is No.175 on the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v.)

Ventnor : George Kiss (1830-1882), a Randwick Council Alderman and sometimes Mayor, built this two-storey sandstone Victorian residence around 1873. It was purchased by the Catholic Church in 1963 from Kiss's youngest surviving child.

Verona, Donacis and Amphion: (126-130 Alison Road) A group of three Edwardian villas in the exuberant Italianate Style. These were built on land owned by the Pemell family. The first occupants that are listed appear in Sands Directory 1906 (for 1905) and are Alfred McDermott JP, Frank Booth Jones, solicitor, and CCP Cross respectively.


Wedding Cake Island : about 900 metres south-east of the centre of Coogee Beach is composed of sandstone rocks hardened by intrusions from sub-marine volcano millions of years ago. The first map to show the island was drawn by surveyor Robert Hoddle (1794-1881) in 1828. One explanation for the island's name is that seagull deposits created a perception of a wedding cake. The island is the subject of popular surf music instrumental single by Australian rock band Midnight Oil.

Wonderland : Fictional name given to the block of flats at No 5 Baden Street Coogee that featured in the 2013 Channel Ten televison drama Wonderland which followed the lives of those who were supposed to live in the apartment building.

Writtle Park Randwick was proclaimed a public park 29th December 1887. It was likely named by the then Mayor Thomas James Lowe (c1830-1910) after his birthplace, Writtle, a village 1.6 km west of Chelmsford in Essex. Writtle also named his Dutruc Street residence Writtle.

Wylie’s Baths: (Beach St, Coogee) In 1907 Henry Alexander Wylie (1868-1929) leased these baths from Randwick Municipal Council, later calling them Wylie’s Surf Baths. Originally a house painter, he became a champion long distance swimmer. His daughter was Wilhelmina Wylie q.v. The baths are No.1677 on the NSW State Heritage Register (q.v.)

Wylie, Wilhelmina “Mina”: (1891 -1984) The Wylie family lived at Bayview in Carr St, Coogee, where Mina’s swimming abilty would have been encouraged by her father, Henry (see above). Along with her friend, Fanny Durack, she competed in the 1912 Olympic Games in Stockholm, which were allowing women entrants for swimming for the first time. Mina won the silver medal for the 100m freestyle, with a time of 1m 25.4 seconds, Fanny taking the gold medal. Mina went on to win 115 championship titles, and was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame in 1974. RDHS Museum has a collection of some of her official clothes, swimming costumes and badges relating to her Olympic and other swimming achievements.


Xanthorrhoea is a genus of about 30 species of flowering plants endemic to Australia, more commonly known as grass trees. Growing in coastal heath areas, specimens can be seen in the Botany Bay National Park. Yarra Bay is thought to derive from the Aboriginal word for the plant.


Yarra Bay: An indentation on the NE shoreline of Botany Bay, near the suburb of Phillip Bay, and 1 km NNW of the suburb of La Perouse. Believed to derive from an Aboriginal word relating to grasstrees (Xanthorrhoeas), which grew near the bay.


Zions Avenue, Matraville : named after former Randwick Council Alderman John Zions who served on Council from 1954 to 1959

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