Monday, February 27, 2006


Ocean Beach Hotel Umina
(Big version)

Laundy's at the back of Ocean Beach Hotel on the corner of West Street and Trafalgar. The pub itself is 1920s I think. There's a photo of the front here.

Gross Street
(Big version)

Went past this place weeks ago. Got a sunny picture of it this time. It's one of the few fifties houses I've seen so far without major external change.

It was pretty dark this morning but it cleared for a while around lunchtime. Went off to the doctor to have a whinge then walkies after. By then it was clouding over again and got dark enough I had to lighten the photos below.

Wellington Street Umina
(Big version)

This one looks pretty normal from this angle. Looks like it's facing the wrong way but otherwise it's only the paint job I'm not loving. The bit of road you can see in the left foreground is actually a metalled lane and one of the ones I walked today.

Wellington Street Umina
(Big version)

From this angle it looks weird. Don't know if they took a window out and enlarged the other one or what. Also, seeing the paintjob in its full glory makes me want to pluck out my eyes.

Wellington Street Umina
(Big version)

This one's neat and tidy but the large windows make it clunky and it'll deteriorate fast if they don't fix the eaves in the middle.

Trafalgar Street Umina
(Big version)

Quiet little place that probably looked more exciting before those seventies windows went in.

Britannia Street Umina
(Big version)

Fairly boring fifties place that probably looked much better with its original windows.

Britannia Street Umina
(Big version)

Rather pleasant place with fifties-looking colours. Even with cladding and that front window it still looks pretty good.

Pink & grey galahs
(Big version)

This lot (galahs) and a dozen rainbow lorikeets were twittering in someone's backyard as I walked down a lane. The lorikeets took off but the galahs just kept eating.

Got dribbled on by a young but orally-incontintent dog and my feet hurt after a week of no walkies but it was good to get back out there. Bring on autumn's cold mornings!

Bustling Downtown Woy Woy

Grey skies again today. Walkies this afternoon but the photos might be too dark. Here's a couple from last week to be going on with.

Woy Woy Hotel
(Big version)

Woy Woy's premier watering hole. Celebrated 100 years in 1997. The style is Arts and Crafts according to the NSW Heritage Office.

CWA Woy Woy
(Big version)

CWA (Country Womens Assoc.) opposite the ferry wharf. A quietly pleasant fibro building. You can see the roof of the pub above behind it.

Do you realise, people, that it's only two days to autumn? The mornings will get cool and crisp and very walkable. No more lurking behind tightly-shut curtains in me grundies with the fan on full blast.

Friday, February 24, 2006


Clouds over Woy Woy Bay
(Big version)

Woy Woy Bay this morning, from across the road from the station.

Bit under the weather. Haven't walked a single walk all week. Feeling a better now though.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Old brick church

Too bloody muggy today for walkies. There's a storm promised and I'm hoping the bastard breaks long and loud and right overhead. In lieu of walkies photos here's some I took a while back.

St John the Baptist
(Big version)

St John's one of the biggest churches on the Peninsula. It's on the corner of Victoria Road on Blackwall Road, right across from Deepwater shops and the RTA (Road Traffic Authority). Past St John's the houses start, Woy Woy township is only four blocks wide and two blocks deep.

St John the Baptist
(Big version

The NSW Heritage Office has it down as "Simple Federation Gothic" and the "only brick church building of the early twentieth century in the Woy Woy area. Blessed and opened by Archbishop Kelly in 1914 ... Together with the associated school, it forms part of a complex of buildings."

The school buildings are the creamy yellow ones you can see on the left and right sides of the photo and there's one more double-storey one.

On the big version you can see a patched crack on the right from the window up to the eaves and an unpatched one on the left. You can see bits of mortar missing here and there all over it too.

St John the Baptist
(Big version)

Lovely simple door with a flat arch over it. Very nice. This is the main door and there's the usual vestibule inside then the church proper. Nipped in once between services to have a gander. It's simply decorated inside, nothing fancy. There were some peeps praying or summat so I didn't fire off my camera.

St John the Baptist, Woy Woy
(Big version)

Three of the six buildings making up the church complex. The one in the foreground is a school building, the two-storey one might also be a school building or it could be an office. The one behind it looked like it was used for storage or something and behind it there was a bike shed I swear they copied from my primary school. And that's the side of the church on the left edge of the picture.

The two-storey place I'm not sure about. Could be fifties. The roof and the wee awning on the front window fit into the fifties, the windows (bar the front window) look like they were leftovers from the other buildings and the door I think might be fifties.

St John the Baptist
(Big version

The two-storey, possibly fifties building. The eaves are fibro, which was very popular in the fifties. The side of the building in the foreground looks like aluminium cladding painted over and the other two walls are either painted cladding or wood. The railing and posts are 1980s.

St John the Baptist
(Big version

The building in the middle had a musty, seldom-used look about it. Used for storage perhaps. The shed on the left is actually a loo but is pretty much identical to the bike shed at my primary school and evokes many memories of sheltering in it from the rain in winter and the big kids disappearing behind it for a smoke at Little Lunch.

St John the Baptist
(Big version)

The back of the building below.

St John the Baptist, Woy Woy
(Big version)

The front of the building above. Love the simple wooden trim. This building looks like the oldest of the school buildings and it could really use some maintenance.

It's raining at last. Not much but enough to kill off the effing humidity. It's cool enough for walkies now but I gotta stay home and make this place look decent. Real estate agents coming for an inspection tomorrow and it looks like a Home for Indigent Wildebeests.

Saturday, February 18, 2006


Fishing at Woy Woy wharf
(Big version

Some random cutie fishing off the ferry wharf at Woy Woy. He had a slightly tense air about him, like he was waiting for a hook-up to show.

It was as hot as buggery yesterday. Building up to another storm. Which we still haven't got. Had the fan on non-stop for the last 24 hours and as it turns it makes a noise like a baby goat. Very irritating.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Rawson Road

Did Farnell Road in last year's walkies, of course, and I'd swear on a stack of pornos it had heaps of lovely white fifties houses with smart blue trim. But it ain't necessarily so. There were two and only one had smart blue trim. Such is life and I found a few places elsewhere.

Stuck on a mudbank
(Big version)

This isn't a fifties house. You may've guessed. It's some bloke stuck on a mudbank at low tide this morning. It's pretty shallow off the Blackwall foreshore.

Bowden Road foreshore side
(Big version)

Dear Old Thing's house on Blackwall foreshore. Ducks were lurking so I'm thinking she was about to feed them. Bet the neighbours love all the quacking and duckshit with their breakfast.

Bowden Road
(Big version)

Same house, from a dry spot near the storm drain. Shame about those fugly vents but the veranda posts are pleasant.

Burge Road
(Big version)

Looking at the three letterboxes, this place must've ben three units at one time. There's a cabin out the back still. A rectangular seventies structure that may once've been a boatshed.

Farnell Road
(Big version)

Here it is, the one with smart blue trim. Quite nice.

Farnell Road side
(Big version)

Same house, different angle. Looks like a different house but it's the same one.

Farnell Road II
(Big version)

This place might look nice without the veranda enclosure.

Rawson Road
(Big version)

That's the front door there on the corner.

Rawson Road
(Big version)

Same house, different angle. I'm not loving the proportions of this one. The veranda is too narrow and this sticking-out part too wide for my taste. Nice colour though. No idea if it's a fifties colour scheme.

Rawson Road.
(Big version)

The other half of this place was obscured by the bushes. In the biggest version you can see an older roofline behind the right side of the house but I think that was the old garage.

It was a sunny morning today but cool. Only two more weeks till autumn and blissful cool mornings become the norm once more. I can hear number seven's washing machine thumping as I type. He's crammed all his grotty sheets in it to get them on the line before the storm. Lovely storm yesterday and crisp icecreamy cumulus are building up again for another one this afternoon. Excellent.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Small hills

(Kincumber Walk #5)

On the road at the arsecrack of dawn this morning, trundling over to Kincumber. Seeing as I there already I squeezed off another walk. A shortish one, due to getting about 30 seconds sleep last night, what with the bloody humidity and the bloke over the back fence coming home rolling drunk at 3am again. (He's fighting with the missus.)

Anyways, there were a few summer flowers still blooming, bottlebrushes, a pink flowering tree, red geraniums and some tired roses. Walked under a jacaranda tree and felt its soft leaves on my arm. We had one of those when I was a sprog and I loved its soft leaves and the carpet of purple flowers. One of the roses still had a strong perfume, even though its petals were going brown. But there were no flowers left on the orange jessamine hedges of the retirement village.

Broadwater Court
(Big version)

The uphill half of Broadwater Court (second biggest retirement village in Kincumber). The downhill side is opposite and screams eighties. Wussy colours and token gestures. There's the eighties style portico on the units in this photo but the rest of the architecture is quite pleasant, one of the best retirement villages I've seen. Pleasant use of red brick, pointy concrete caps on the fence posts echoing 18th or 19th century gate posts, nice sturdy brick and iron fences and plenty of orange jessmine as hedges.

Burns family house, Kincumber
(Big version)

This is the other side of the Burns family house (1927). I've taken a few snaps of it before (below). This looks like the original front. You can see it from the Avoca Drive shopping centre carpark between the Post Office and the cinema.

Burns house 1927
(Big version)

The back of the house above (taken on a different day). You can see the wee blue plaque on the right of the door. It says "Burns family ... 1927".

No6 Kincumber Street
(Big version)

This one is next to the one above and fits the bill for the "House, John/Peter Burns, Avoca Drive Kincumber (opp. Kincumber Hotel) ... c.1900" from my hist list. Found the heritage listing for it which says it was "rebuilt in 1927 and later moved" but is close to the original spot.

It wasn't the most exciting walk I've ever done due to the mostly seventies and eighties architecture. You know how I love to hate those two decades. But there were a couple of small hills and I got my quota of exercise. It was a bit muggy and I was quite warm by the end of it but a smidgeon of rain came down and a nice cool breeze came up and I was happy.

By the by

While I've got you here I may as well do some preening. Some of my photos got collected by Picture Australia. They did a cattle call thingy for people interested in donating photos and I signed up. Admittedly, my photos got picked I'm Woy Woy's most prolific flickerite rather because I'm fabulous. But I'm basking anyways.

To see my photos on Picture Australia:
# 1. Go to their Advanced search page
# 2. Leave the first field (box) blank
# 3. Select 'collection' from the drop down menu in the second field (box).
# 4. Select ' photo sharing from Yahoo!' from the drop down menu in the third field (box).
# 5. Click Go.
# 6. Go to the search box at the bottom of the page and type in "pc2256", "pc2257" or "woy woy" to see my photos. There's also some cool old photos of the Peninsula in there, some by Frank Hurley.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Mug shots

Went down the Sydney today. We started in Chonatown with a BBQ pork bun and walked over the Quay for an excellent thingy. We walked up George Street and along Macquarie Street where all the rich lawyers and doctors lived in colonial times. There's plenty of nice sandstone buildings still there and I took plenty of photos. Which turned out crap. Except for the two below.

Central Baptist Church portico
(Big version

The portico from this church I saw last time I was in George Street. Had a gander for the foundation stone today. There was just a stone saying it was dedicated in 1936. There's nothing on their site either to say when it was built but there's a picture of the inside on their site.

Victoria Regina
(Big version

Queen Victoria looming over the passersby behind St James. Across the road, in front of the Hyde Park Barracks, is a thingy of Prince Albert with "1866" on it. Must've been when the statue went up because Wikipedia has him carking it in 1861.

City of Shadows was on at the Justice & Police Museum. It was excellent. Some bloke called Doyle spent four years in an attic sorting through old mug shots from the 1910s to 1940s. Not the front-and-two-profiles mug shots they do nowadays. These were more like studio portraits.

The exhibition was packed into two fairly small rooms. In the first room there were a few small exhibits like the police photographers' camera and the clothes nicked from some house or shop. There was a map of the inner city and a slideshow of streetscapes. They were fascinating. Working class neighbourhoods like The Rocks. Narrow scruffy streets and a couple of shots of houses and shops.

In the other room there were more pictures on the walls and another slideshow. The first one was great but the second one was rivetting. It started with the mug shots. A battered cell wall behind and a stool and a lot of hat hair. This was When Men Wore Hats and most of the shots had the suspect clutching his or her hat and their hair sticking up. A few of them looked worried but most of them were pretty relaxed.

Then there were more street scenes. All this time there was a voiceover commenting on what'd been found out about the photos and what hadn't. In the street scenes the voiceover commented on how the streets were empty of adults when it was a crime scene but chockers with gawkers young and old when it was a fire or a car through a shop window.

There were interiors after that. Poky little rooms and one very middle-class bedroom, knocked over furniture and blood on a bed, a cafe where there'd been an assault, a pub I recognised from Oxford Street I'm sure. Then a few dead bodies. One bloke dead on the floor of a public loo with a bottle of booze beside him, a woman in a floral dress flat out on a kitchen floor and two bodies, one over the other in a parlour.

It was something the ordinary person doesn't see. Mug shots and crime scenes. That was compelling enough. But it had the added dimension of looking back in time and looking at the inner city crims between the wars.

The room was crowded and we went into the rest of the building after that. I went into the Charge Room and the Police Court and stood in the place of the suspect and the officer making a record of the charge, in the place of the witness in the court and of the solicitors (lawyers) and the magistrate. I've only ever been into a copshop to see if they could arrest my ex-boyfriend for being a dimwit (that's a whole other story) and all I saw was a uniform behind a counter.

Sitting in the different spots in the court was illuminating. The magistrate could see every part of the room. The law teams could see the reporters, the witness and the magistrate. There was a lantern in the ceiling (raised section of the roof with windows) and the room was quite light and airy. Until you sat in the dock. It was claustrophobic. It wasn't small, the info sheet says it could hold fifteen. But it had bars round it and it faced directly at the magistrate and the view was quite different.

Didn't get to see it all today but I'll be going back there for a better look at the building and another look at that exhibition.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Pollie Waffle

I loathe politics so this is going to be a quickie. It's a basic rundown of Australian politics for Suzanne. Enjoy!

The Queen
I've got a few American readers so we'll start by clearing up the confusion: she is NOT the Queen of Australia, she's the Queen of England and as such has dominion over us and other Commonwealth nations.

Charlie (Prince Charles) is her son and next in line for the crown then come his and Diana's boys, Princes Wills and Harry. Poor Harry looks more like his dad every day but, thank Christ, Wills looks like his mum.

Governors and Governors General
Each state has a Governor and the whole of Australia has a Governor General. They have the power to dismiss our Premiers and Prime Ministers. In 1975 the most notorious of our Governors General, Kerr ("Kerr by name cur by nature") dismissed Whitlam.

Our current Governor General is Major General Michael Jeffery and NSW's current Governor is Professor Marie Bashir.

Premiers and Prime Ministers
Premiers head each state and Prime Ministers head the country. Yes, this means we've got two heads of each state (Governor & Premier) and two heads of Australia (Governor General & Prime Minister). Technically this means we're ruled by the English Crown but, since 1975, the Queen has made it known we control our own destiny.

Our current PM is John Weasel Howard (pictured).


A few of our better-known PMs:
Edmund Barton, our first one. 1st of March 1901 Parliament was opened by the Duke of York (later crowned George V). Before Federation each state was a British colony and federation was agreed on by a vote and we've never fought a war against England. Australian national identity kicked in 1915 in Gallipoli.

Harold Holt, the one we lost. And yes, we really did name a swimming pool after him.

Gough Whitlam, the one who got the sack.

Bob Hawke, the PM who cried and got pissed on TV when we won the America's Cup.

Paul Keating, the PM we had to have.

Main parties
Democrats. NOT like the American democrats. Too rational to be real politicians. They've suffered several implosions recently but are still going strong.

Get some fucking policies already! And put The Beazer on a diet. The bastard looks like he'll be carried out of parliment in an ambulance one day. This party suffers implosions almost daily.

Liberal my arse. Shows you what bullshit there is in politics. These bastards are conservative through and through. They just fucked us over with the new industrial reform crap. Talk about a great leap backwards. Their leader is our current PM, John Howard, a closet comb-over and sulky bastard.

Conservative rural party. Half the time these buggers form a coalition with the Libs to keep Labor out of the big chair. This leads to regular implosions and the Nats threatening to take their party and go home.

Still confused? Here's one someone else made earlier.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Two words


There's some photos here of the memorial erected to the bushfires in Canberra and a brief article about it here and an article about the fires themselves here.

It pissed down raining on the day the memorial opened. Which to my mind is the best memorial you can get for those who died in a fire.


The one millionth word of English is due to spring into existence this year. How cool is that! Read about it while I eat lunch. I'm so hungry I could eat the crotch out of a low-flying duck.

The changing word: Englsh in modern life

Two poles

Bustling Downtown Woy Woy

A few photos from Blackwall Road near the station. Took them last month or something and forgot about them.

Blackwall Road
(Big version

The two veranda roofs thing is interesting. The top one is the original, going by the style and the age of the tin. The lower one says eighties to me but that's just the pitch talking. If it was eighties it would proably be some psuedo-Federation colour or that hideous pinky-yellow so beloved of the eighties. So I'm putting it down as nineties due to the colour and the pitch being governed by the existing roof above it.

The empty shop had crafts or something in it for a bit. They went out of business quick. You'll also notice an old Angus&Robertson (national bookshop) sign up the top. Not sure when they left, maybe the late eighties.

The blue-green bit of shop you can see on the right edge of the photo was a chemist. They moved down to the old Pizza Hut place opposite the Library, lopped the roof off (hallelujah!) and replaced it with nice green tiles. There's a couple of old photos in the Post Office (next to where the chemist is now) and one shows the PO back in 1890 or something when it was where the blue-green shop is. Confused? Me too. I gotta do a new map.

Blackwall Road
(Big version)

Haven't seen the back of this one yet. The front looks fifties. The depth of the veranda roof thingy, the tiles at the left end of the window and that wall of windows upstairs. The green peaked roof just visible behind the shop is the clock tower.

Even at this hour (about 5.45AM) there's some bastard parked in my photo. Probably one of these mad keen fishing types. Can't throw a rock in Woy Woy without hitting one of those buggers.

Tiled shop
(Big version)

As far as I can make out this one is Inter-War Art Deco (circa 1915 - circa 1940) and I've got a feeling it was built in the 20s.

First time I saw it I would've bet ten bucks it used to be a cinema (theater) but the cinemas were at No 14 (where the Commonwealth Bank is now) and next to the Library where Woolies is now. Perhaps the owner of this just wanted something flash.

Wee arcade
(Big version)

Can't find room for any doubt that this one's 1950s Post-War International (circa 1940 - 1960). The back of the building's the same style as the front, the roof's 50s and the bricks you can see down the side are a fifties colour.

The stairs are in the middle and there's a tiny shop under them. It was a stamp and coin dealer a coupla years ago and now it's the world's smallest hairdresser. At the back there's the Cat Rescuers' Society shop or something and a bit of a carpark. The shop on the right with frocks in the window used to seel over-priced second-hand furniture.

It's right next to the lights at the Blackwall Road-Railway Street corner and adjacent to the station.

Whatsit Street

These two're from last week as well. They're across the road from the Lifeline shop and just along from the pub. The tides of time seem to have moved from around the Trafalgar Avenue corner (where the pub is) and left several shops empty. Maybe the tide will wash back again. Who knows?

217-225 West Street
(Big version)

Most of the West Street shops to the east of Trafalgar Avenue (where the pub is) are lower rent like this one or just plain empty. A lot of them haven't been renovated since the seventies.

No idea when this was built or designed. The top looks seventies in style and those window ledges seem to have made a reappearance in the seventies. But the bricks are saying fifties to me and the depth of the veranda roof thingy is not saying seventies. This one's going in the too-hard basket for now.

Empty shop on West Street
(Big version)

Around 211-213 West Street, one shop to the right of 217. Can't remember when the marine supplier moved out. A few years ago I think.

This one I'm putting down as late fifties/early sixties due to the tiles on the shopfront, the depth of the veranda roof thingy, the colour of the bricks visible on the top half and the style of the top half. I'd put it down as plain fifties except for the window frames on the top half. They look more sixties than fifties.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006


(Woy Woy Walk #8)

Last night and Sunday night there was a glorious wind and yesterday was 23 degrees (73.4F). Very nice. The sun this morning was in and out like a fiddler's elbow. Together with the breeze it made a fairly cool walk. Not much orange jessamine left now but there were plenty of roses still out and one garden had a rather beautiful tea-scented pale pink rose and a bright red rose with a pineapple scent.

Albion Street
(Big version)

No idea if these are fifties colours. I've never seen them on a fifties house before. The house still looks pretty good though.

Nelson Street
(Big version)

Neat but dull. Perhaps with a lighter colour on the fence and windows it'd perk up.

Oxford Street
(Big version)

Not sure if this one's a rental or not. Another unremarkable house with (possibly) seventies cladding and a seventies veranda on the back.

Oxford St
(Big version)

Another view of a possible rental. Not sure if those awnings on the windows are fifties or seventies.

Albion Street
(Big version)

A brick-over reno. One of the least attractive things you can do to a fifties house. It's still got the palms though, and one of its original windows.

1950s cabin
(Big version)

One of the best cabins I've ever seen. It looks in good nick, it's got plenty of space around it for a garden and to let in the light, and the fence also in good nick. It's also unusual because of its fifties design.

Lane Street
(Big version)

Another cabin. Fairly standard in that the garage door's still in place (covered up inside with masonite) and has a hodgepodge of windows and a carport as combined veranda, washing-line and carport. It appears to be in okay nick, i.e., not actively falling down. Cabins usually house a poverty-stricken retiree, a uni student or a bachelor living entirely on a diet of beer and pizza.

Albion lane
(Big version)

Cabins are converted garages. Most of them are coverted by their owners so there's plenty that're not up to standard. This place looked occupied and had a street number painted on its fence. Though it may just be someone's non-weatherproof office or workshop. I hope it's not being used as a dwelling.

There's relatively few fifties houses on the Peninsula but I've noticed an enormous number of fifties garages and quite a lot of fifties verandas.