Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Georgiana Terrace

Back to the beautiful warm sun after a few days of black skies and cutting wind. Did over an hour on Brisbane Water Drive but didn't take my camera. So here's a few photos from last week in Gosford.

Old Gosford Public School 1877 1886
(Big version)

My hist list says "former school and residence" but when I was taking photos round the Georgiana Terrace side I saw a couple of kids and what looked like a teacher.

Gosford Library says that "in 1877 a purpose-built sandstone school opened on a site at the top of Georgiana Terrace, overlooking the town". My hist list has it at "1877, 1886" so perhaps there was an extension bunged on at the back in 1886. Certainly looks like it.

Old Gosford Public School 1877 1886 II
(Big version)

Also taken from Henry Parry Drive. I like the colours, the sandstone with the natty green trim and the classic tin roof.

The NSW Heritage Office has it listed as "a fine and intact example of the Victorian Rustic Gothic style of the late nineteenth century" and has something about "its continued use as a school". So I was right. It also says "Miss Honaria McGrath was the first teacher. Brick extensions were added in 1892. As school grew in the early years of the twentieth century, solid wooden buildings with adjoining classrooms were used". In 1954 the school was moved to the Mann Street site, the one with the old railway carriage. Those kids I saw were very small, kindy (pre-school) age, so maybe it's a kindy now.

Old Gosford Public School 1877 1886 III
(Big version)

View of the front veranda from Georgiana Terrace. Lovely spot for gazing out over the water on a hot summer day. Despite some fugly eighties flats the view is still mostly there.

Old Gosford Public School
(Big version)

Back of the main building. Taken from Georgina Terrace. It's all still in good nick by the look if it.

Fagans Bay & The Broadwater from Mouat Lane Gosford
(Big version)

The line across the middle of the water there is the railway bridge going into Gosford. On the lef is the corner of a block of unlovely seventies flats in Mouat Lane (off Georgiana Terrace). The boats are near Gosford Wharf, it's obscured by the flats. The park is the foreshore along Dane Drive and that's the industrial area in West Gosford in the distance.

Fear and loathing in Kathmandu

Bugger. Sue Fear's death verified. She was an Australian champion mountain climber. The day they brought Lincoln Hall down the mountain she disappeared down a hidden crevasse.

American readers may not know about the trouble in Dili. East Timor is a young nation. Gained independence from Indonesia only a few years ago. Young nations have teething troubles and East Timor is having them now. Their capital Dili is pretty much in the hands of armed gangs. We flew troops up there a few days ago at the request of the East Timorese government.

The best thing that can be said about the earthquake in Indonesia is that there was no tsunami after it to spread the pain like last time.

In nutty news, dozens injured as cheese roll goes crackers (includes video). Pommy readers, what is it with you buggers and cheese? Seriously.

And finally some good news. Sophie, that little kid who was run over a few weeks ago (the one who was badly burnt at two) has been cleared to return to school in a month.

Hopefully next week there'll be some good news. Or I just won't open the fucking newspaper.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Cockle Channel

(Random walkies)

Went to Kincumber on the weekend. Over The Rip bridge from Woy Woy to Daleys Point, past the ramp down to St Huberts Island, winding along Empire Bay Drive, round past Empire Bay and Bensville, down Mackillop Road and Humphreys Road to the old orphanage at Kincumber South. A still day, with the water like a mirror. Proper winter cold in the morning then a warm sun in a blue sky.

Cockle Channel between Kincumber South & Davistown
(Big version)

On the left of the photo we're looking across Cockle Channel in the general direction of Empire Bay. The mangroves on the right are Davistown.

Taken from the ferry wharf at the end of Humphreys Road. The old orphanage and Holy Cross church are just up the hill behind the camera.

Cockle Channel between Kincumber South & Davistown
(Big version)

Looking across Cockle Channel at Davistown. Looks like those houses are on Kincumber Crescent and Amy Street. Along the bottom of the photo are rock oysters. They're all over Brisbane Water. You gotta get up bloody early to beat the seagulls to them.

Taken from just beside the ferry wharf.

Cockle Channel between Kincumber South & Davistown
(Big version)

Davistown on the left. Looks like Yattalunga in the distance. Taken from the same spot.

Terraces in Broadview Avenue Gosford
(Big version)

After that we went back to Gosford. This is a row of terraces perhaps five years old in Broadview Avenue. Terraces are all over Sydney in the 19th century suburbs. They're one of my favourites and it's good to see such a nice bit of retro on the Central Coast.

Friday, May 26, 2006

Dr Spike's video library

Four fucking goes it took to upload this bloody video. 10 second pan shot of Brisbane Water filmed on Dr Spike's Unsteadicam (patent pending). Green Point to Woy Woy, including Saratoga (the pointy hill), an oyster farm and Pelican Island.

Watch it at You Tube because it stuffs up the site load for some peeps.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Woy Woy to Tascott

(Random walkies)

Went off along Brisbane Water Drive today, along the water in the direction of Gosford. Last night I realised with a start the Woy Woy to Gosford Fun Run's on in a few weeks. And here's me behind in my training schedule.

Got passed by half a dozen runners, probably also training and there were a fair few other walkers stumping along. Been asking around and it looks like there'll be quite a crowd of walkers at the back of the Fun Run.

Barge and Pelican Island
(Big version)

This barge seems to be connected with the oyster and mussel farms, though I've only seen smaller boats used to pick up the racks from the water.

New crash barriers on Brisbane Water Drive
(Big version)

Saw something like these barriers on a re-run of The New Inventors a few weeks ago. I wonder if this is them. These ones are on the Woy Woy end of Brisbane Water Drive where a new bit of the cycle path just went in.

Not playing possum
(Big version)

This wee fella is a former possum. Possibly he fell from the powerlines overhead during on of those storms the other night. He's not very big, as you can see from the relative size of the grass. He's perhaps twice the size of a rat and by no means the smallest Australian possum.

Woy Woy & Koolewong from Tascott
(Big version)

When I got to Tascott I stopped and looked back all the way I'd come, from Woy Woy to across the road from Tascott station where this photo was taken. 4 kilometres (2.49 miles) and a third of the way along the Woy Woy to Gosford Fun Run route.

The squarish hill on the left is Blackwall Mountain in Woy Woy. The Fun Run leaves from Woy Woy and finishes in Gosford. It's 12 kays (7.46 miles) and it's on sometime next month. Better keep on track with my training schedule.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Smoke on the water

(Random walkies)

Fog on Barrenjoey Head & the North Shore
(Big version)

Forgot to charge my camera battery last night so today's photo is from last week. There was a very nippy night followed by a clear blue day with fog in the morning.

This was taken from beside the loos at the end of Memorial Avenue Ettalong (down the entrance side of The Excrescence).

Wagstaffe is on the left and you can see part of Barrenjoey there under the fog next to it. Lion Island's clear of fog and on the right is the far end of Ettalong Beach.

Nippy day today. Nice and sunny once the cloud lifted a bit but a cruel wind. I went out in just a tee shirt and froze until the walking warmed me up. It's overcast again now but I'm inside all snug and warm with a hot wet cuppa tea and a wooly jumper on. Bliss.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Dane Drive

(Every-street walkies, Gosford #9)

Slept in late this morning but the joy of cold season walkies is you can walk late and not boil to death. This autumn sun is so warm and gentle it's a pleasure to walk in. Went back up to Gosford again on the train and back to the waterfront.

Wooden boat Gosford Wharf
(Big version)

Nice wooden yacht moored at the Gosford Wharf.

Wooden boat Gosford Wharf
(Big version

What starts with M and ends in KU? A boat whose name you can't read due to the angle of the sun. (Same boat as above.)

If no-one'd been around I may well have swarmed up the rigging and got some views of Gosford from that crows'-nest on the forward mast.

TS Hawkesbury to Daleys Point from Gosford Wharf
(Big version)

Brisbane Water from TS Hawkesbury to Daleys Point, taken from Gosford Wharf. Left to right: Daleys Point, Barrenjoey Head (furtherest), Lion Island, Woy Woy, Koolewong & Tascott, and Point Clare with TS Hawkesbury (Naval training base) there at the water's edge.

Rumour has it there was a couple of blokes kayaking round Brisbane Water starting Saturday morning and finishing Sunday morning. I only heard about it when it was over. Raising money for sprogs with cancer or something. Can't find a link.

Rocks at Gosford Wharf
(Big version)

Quite subdued colours compared to these just a few kilometres away at Noonan Point. But I like the textures of the erosion.

Gosford Pool & Point Frederick
(Big version)

This afternoon's rain moving in from the sea. (It's black dark now and there's a storm about to come over the Peninsula.)

Gosford Pool on the left, the long low building. The one in the middle is the Gosford Sailing Club.

Circus Monoxide bus at Leagues Club Field Gosford
(Big version)

Circus tent's gone but the bus and chairs are still there. Very suss. Surely they couldn't get the tent and clowns and ponies all into that bus?

Art Deco Dane Drive Gosford
(Big version)

Art Deco building I stumbled across without even trying. Just across the road from the traffic lights at the pool on Dane Drive.

Steve & the publicity machine

For those who came in late, the Fat Man Walking guy has made it all the way across America and is in New York being interviewed to death.

He's obviously pretty weirded out by the whole fame thing. As you would be. He's been walking all that way pretty much ignored by the media then they descend on him in packs in the last couple of months and now he's on TV shows that get beamed across all the distance he's come and round the world.

It'll be interesting to see how far he can get with this publicity towards his goals. The walking was just the start of the journey. Best of luck, mate.

Friday, May 19, 2006

The Broadwater

(Every street walkies, Gosford #8)

Old & new Gosford Wharf
(Big version)

Forgot to bung this photo up the other day with the boats and cars. It's the Gosford Wharf as it is now and a photo of it in its heyday. It's directly across the road from the Gosford Park and the War Memorial Park and next to that restaurant place with the sails.

Can't find anything specific about the wharf's history except that it was of vital importance for supplies, trade and tourism before the railway came in the 1880s. Gosford was a few pubs, a general store or two and some farms back then. It's officially a city now but is really just a town.

Point Clare & Koolewong from Gosford
(Big version)

Taken from the seat between the boatramp and the pool. That's the pool on the left, Woy Woy's off in the distance behind the forest of yachts, then Koolewong & Tascott and Point Clare on the right.

Woy Woy from Gosford waterfront
(Big version)

Right there in the middle is Lion Island. Tiny but distinctive. That faint bit on the left of it might be Barrenjoey Head.

In front of Lion Island is Pelican Island at Woy Woy and to the right of Lion Island is either Mt Ettalong or Blackwall Mtn. Over on the right of the photo is Koolewong.

On the left of the photo is Longnose (Point Frederick) then Saratoga by the looks of it and Daleys Point.

Circus Monoxide Leagues Club Field Gosford II
(Big version)

The circus is in town. Down at the league Club Field on Dane Drive. Right across from the primary school. The kids must be hard to teach with a circus visible out the classroom window.

Coulda gone round the other side for a better photo (the sun was at the wrong angle) but that would've meant wading through show ponies and hordes of excited kiddies clutching fairy floss (cotton candy).

Gosford Football Stadium
(Big version)

Couple games of the rugby world cup were played here in 2003. I forgot and had to swim upstream away from the station as all the Ireland supporters were streaming the other way.

Lovely spot for a stadium there by the water. Lovely spot for an anything really. That's Presidents Hill behind it and the railway runs between them.

Got home at lunchtime. The Dear Old Things were all a twitter about the power black-out. A couple of them had been in the shops when it went out and had to grope their way out in the dark. Bit of excitement for them. That dimwitted bloke from down the road came past honking excitedly that it was a terrorist attack. Yeah right. They cut the power to a small communter town on the Central Coast in order to bring Australia to its knees.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Chaos & cacophony

Go and read Steve's post about when he arrived in New York. It's hilarious.

For those who haven't been paying attention, he's the Fat Man Walking guy who walked from California to New York.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Boats & cars

(Every street walkies, Gosford #7)

Sun was back out today. Went up to Gosford waterfront. Before the railway came through in the 1880s, the wharf end of Mann Street was the happening end of town. There were no sealed roads, stuff and peole came up from Sydney and in from other parts of the Central Coast by boat. Everything was then hoicked up Wharf Road (now Vaughan Avenue) by hand or horse or carried off in private boats.

Gosford Ferry Wharf Dane Drive Gosford
(Big version)

Ferry wharf off Dane Drive. There's a ferry that does cruises and shit.

Fine feast
(Big version)

Illustrated legal bag & size thingy. Pretty and delicious. Stuck on a bollard on the ferry wharf.

MV Gladstone Gosford Wharf
(Big version)

Working boat. She appears to have been registered in Sydney in1964 and is 14.3 metres (46.92 feet) long.

MV Gladstone's dingy Gosford Wharf
(Big version)

Looks like she picks up all the flotsam and jetsam.

Misquoting Oscar Wilde: To lose one deckchair is unfortunate, to lose two looks like someone was in a drunken rage and threw them overboard.

MV Gladstone Gosford Wharf
(Big version)

She looks a bit portly from this angle. Not her most flattering side.

MV Gladstone Gosford Wharf
(Big version)

All kitted out for a hard day on the job.

(Big version)

Parked at that restaurant place on the waterfront with all the sails. Possibly it's called Sails.

Anyways, Morgan have been making cars for 70 years now apparently. This model seems to be a 1957 4 4 model. Can't be stuffed trawling for more info on it ATM but there's a very pretty picture of it here.

(Big version)

I know bugger all about hotrods. In the classic cars (i.e., vintage and veteran originals) circles my father hung out in, hotrods were considered bogan cars and therefore knowing anything about them was considered crass.

This one had a Ford badge on the front and a couple of hotrod club stickers on the windscreen. Didn't find any more specific insignia. The instruments looked like the real deal though they could've been repro and I expect they're hooked up to something modern. That's a fuel tank on the front.

(Big version)

It was parked across from the Blacket on Mann Street, Gosford.

Monday, May 15, 2006


(Every street walkies, Gosford #6)

Did this one Saturday. Pissing down raining again today. Not great for photos but much needed. Gosford area dams are at 22%. Ouch.

Creighton's Mann Street Gosford
(Big version)

Art Deco (circa 1915 - c. 1940). Cement-rendered brick on a sandstone foundation. Built in 1938 for R.H. Creighton Funeral Directors.

One of my favourites in the Gosford area. Love the textures and shapes of it, the fins and the rectangular thingy up the middle and the rounded Deco corners and the wee balconies.

Creighton's Mann Street Gosford
(Big version)

The central fin and the rectangular thingy.

Before they were funeral directors the Creightons were carpenters and became undertakers in the 1880s apparently. They were in the area from around 1844 and the date on the ribbon says "Est[ablished] 1844".

Creighton's Mann Street Gosford
(Big version)

The building has sandstone foundations and a sandstone garage for the hearses attached. The fin motif has been carried across to the garage and the arches of the garage are wider versions of the entrance arch on the main building.

The building behind the garage appears to be a house or small block of flats. But a look at the Register of National Whatists reveals "The simple rectangular, brick building appears to date c[irca] 1950 and is believed to house preparation and storage areas". And there was I thinking the Creightons lived there.

As you can see, the building is for lease. It's on the Register of the National Estate (protected buildings & places) so it shouldn't be interfered with by it's new occupants.

From the Register:
"The use of such an exuberant and highly eclectic variation of the style, is rare for a funeral parlour...It is the only remaining Art Deco building in the main street of Gosford...It has considerable value for its contribution to the streetscape and civic precinct of Gosford...Its style, location and setting impart a landmark quality to the building".

It's certainly a landmark and I know I'm not the only one who loves having it on Mann Street.

Creighton's Mann Street Gosford
(Big version)

The Georgiana Terrace side. Notice the lovely rounded corner of the building. The windows and roof on the side veranda thingy were added around the 1950s.

And notice how steep the site is. Georgiana Terrace is a real goat track. Very good for conditioning the quads.

Creighton's Mann Street Gosford
(Big version)

The Register of National Whatsits also tells me the wee canvas hoods over these balconies (there's one the other side) are "a recent addition". They suit the place well.

Family historians will be pleased to know the Gosford Library has on microfiche the "R.H. Creighton Gosford Funeral Parlour Index and records 1909-1989". The Gosford District Local Studies Group appears to have copies as well.

If you're off to the old pioneer cemetery-cum-park on the tip of Longnose (Pt Frederick) have a gander at the graves. There's quite a few Creightons listed there.

Good and chilly today. I'm off to have a nice hot cuppa.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Gosford war memorial park

(Every-street walkies, Gosford #5)

Pissing down raining today. It's so long since it rained I'd forgotten what it looked like. I'm sitting here with a hot cuppa enjoying the rain and the cold and blogging some more photos from Wednesday.

War Memorial Park & Vaughan Avenue Gosford
(Big version)

Looking down the hill to The Broadwater (Brisbane Water) and the ferry with the war memorial park on the left. The hill in the background is Point Clare.

View from the War Memorial Park Mann Street Gosford
(Big version)

View from the top part of the park over The Broadwater to Fagans Bay and the Kariong hills. The ramp on the right is the Pacific Hwy overpass, the road in the bottom left is Dane Drive. The footy stadium is on the far right. The Kariong Hill lookout is up there on the left side of the ridge somewhere.

War Memorial Park Mann Street Gosford
(Big version)

The main memorial in the park. Nice and quiet and appropriately surrounded by rosemary.

Annotated photos of the whole memorial.

War Memorial Park Mann Street Gosford
(Big version)

Boer War memorial.

In Memory Of
1899 - 1902

They obeyed their country's call".

Annotated photos of the whole memorial.

War Memorial Park Mann Street Gosford
(Big version)

On the Boer War memorial.

of 'Woodport'.
20th May 1901".

The date is wrong, according to the library. They say the official record has him dying "exactly a year earlier". Trooper Sidney S. Mayo and Legge are both "listed as killed in action". Rooksberry, author of Every Mother's Son (copies in the Gosford Lirary system) found out they probably died of enteric fever, which during the Boer War killed more men that combat did.

War Memorial Park Mann Street
(Big version)

Some people don't like guns being included at war memorials. Mechanism of death and all that. There's no National Service now in my country and I've never joined voluntarily. For me the guns show some of the mundane detail of what it was like every day for the troops on the front line. I can sit on the gunner's tiny seat and put my hands on the levers and wheels he touched and imagine what it was like to sit there firing and hoping death didn't come that day.

Engraved on a small panel on this side near the gunner's position:
"SADDLE. 25 Pn/r
No. [blank section] Mk [blank section]".

Engraved on the barrel:
"C. of G.
Q.F.25Pr MK.II.
M.O. 1941 JACKET No L/6136
8 - 0 - 4

M.O. 1944".

Engraved on a small panel on the other side:
"CARR. 25 Pr MKI|L|
REG. No. 4033 [or 4933]".

War Memorial Park Mann Street
(Big version)

Over the left wheel you can see the tiny seat theat is the gunner's position. Not very big and probably caused terrible cases of Gunner's Bum. The big flat circular section swings the barrel round in response to the gunner's actions on the levers and wheels.

There endeth my knowledge of guns 'n' ammo.

Somewhere on the water side of the barrel:

War Memorial Park Mann Street
(Big version)

Gunner's view. Except that he'd had the peephole open. Click for the annotated version.

Annotated photos of all five memorials.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Noo York Noo York

From Steve Vaught's (Fat Man Walking) site:


Watch Steve on the Today Show, May 10th at approximately 7:30 am."

He made it. Onya, Steve! Knew you'd make it, mate. Congratulations. Hope they had a cold beer and a footrub waiting for you.

Steve's walked across America. All the way from California to New York. All the way, sleeping in a tent beside the road most of the way. He's had a few companions, people who've walked a few miles with him and a few TV crews trailing along with him interviewing him. But he's walked the whole way essentially alone, no support crew. That's the same distance as from Perth to Canberra then up to Brissie or Nepal to North Korea or Calais to the Red Sea. Hell of a distance and a hell of an achievement.

He hasn't been on the news here yet. Got bumped off by fire, a suburban bomb maker and the Federal Budget.

Unless he gets bumped off by a terrorist attack, he'll be on Sixty Minutes here this Sunday. They filmed an interview with him a few weeks ago. It'll be interesting to see how he was doing back then with New York still ahead of him.

In other news

You can now buy a board game based on the life and crimes of Australia's second most famous criminal, Chopper Read. BYO toe-cutters.

Our most famous crim is of course, Ned Kelly. Yep, the same Ned Kelly they made into a movie.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Old sandstone church

(Every street walkies, Gosford #4, read #3)

Mann Street is the main street of Gosford. At the water end of Mann Street there's a block of sixties or seventies flats in beige brick and beside them the two churches of Christ Church, one an unattractive round 1960s job with a spire sticking up from the middle of it, the other a wee old sandstone church known as the Blacket.

The Blacket Christ Church Gosford
(Big version)

The style is Victorian Free Gothic (c. 1840-c. 1890). According to the library, the Blacket was built in 1858 in East Gosford and moved to Mann Street in 1905. This photo is taken from the veranda of the round sixties church.

The Blacket Christ Church Gosford
(Big version)

When the Blacket was moved its sandstone blocks were numbered so they could put it back together at the other end. On the big version you can still see the numbers 57, 59 and 6? on the blocks on the north side.

The Blacket Christ Church Gosford
(Big version)

The Blacket Christ Church Gosford
(Big version)

The older churches round Brisbane Water are small and generally simple. I like a bit of Perp Dec but I also like these nice simple little churches with their simple little doors and windows.

The Blacket Christ Church Gosford
(Big version)

Lovely interior. Used mostly for weddings and christenings I gather from their website.

There's stained glass window (not showing here) with a bloke and another bloke in memory of Sidney Fielder who died in 1925.

Christ Church Gosford
(Big version)

This is an interesting old structure. It's to the back of the Blacket and close enough to be used for the minister's changing room. The size of it indicates it also was used for whatever other churchy things ministers regularly do. It seems to be still in use.

It's bloody hard to put any sort of date on this bugger. The library had no info on it and neither does the church website. The style suggests it was built to complement the church and the info I've got on the church grounds suggests it was built after 1905. The sandstone looks at least seventy years old. I'm going to put the bugger at inter-war (1919 - 1939) and leave it that till I get some info.

1913 Rectory Christ Church Gosford
(Big version)

Now the office, formely the Rectory (the minister's house). Built in 1913 in the Arts & Crafts style that led to the California Bungalow. Very nice.

Christ Church Gosford
(Big version)

Looks like a fifties building possibly on older founations and with recycled windows. The little portico thingy is cute but stylistically bewildering. It too is still in use.

It's good to get back to the every-street walkies. It's been so nice and nippy in the mornings lately it spurred me on.