Monday, 10 November 2014

RAAF Memorial Dulwich Hill

Image Source: Australian War Memorial
I had saved the above picture from the Australian War Memorial page a while ago but forgot about it until Marrickville Council posted the same picture via their Facebook page today.

The photo captures the memorial plaque and floral tributes in the backyard of the family home of RAAF Flight Sergeant Jack Wormald, No. 466 Squadron, c. 1944–1947. (38 Terrace Road, Dulwich Hill.)  Inscribed on the plaque were the words ‘A tribute to the memory of our beloved son Flight Sergeant Jack Dudley Wormald RAAF and his crew lost over Berlin Feb 15th 1944, aged 21 years. God gave thy brave soul wings. My Son. My Son’. The dog had belonged to Jack Wormald. 

Jack Wormald and the crew of Halifax HX293 went missing on 15 February 1944 on an operation to Berlin, but they actually crashed and died in Holland, where the remains of all seven of them were buried by Dutch people in the Protestant Churchyard at Grootegast (Opende). Before the Commonwealth War Graves Commission erected their standard headstones over the graves, the inhabitants of Grootegast build a memorial to the crew, and in 1951 it was visited by the Australian Ambassador to the Netherlands, Mr Alfred Sterling. At a ceremony the Ambassador laid a wreath of red tulips on the graves, as did the Burgomaster of Grootegast. It is clear that the parents of Jack Wormald were in touch with the people of Grootegast, because affixed to the memorial to this day is a small plaque in the shape of Australia, on which are these words: ‘Mr and Mrs Wormald, 32 Terrace Road, Dulwich Hill, Sydney, wish to thank the people of Opende for the loving care of this monument erected to the memory of our beloved son Jack (pilot) and his crew’.

 [Wormald, Jack Dudley, Flight Sergeant, Casualty, Halifax 293, item 166/44/104, A705, National Archives of Australia: information about the burials at Opende, online at, a website dedicated to men and women who died or were buried in the Netherlands during World War II; AWM P05870.001] 

Jack Dudley Wormald (Centre Front) and his flight crew.

Saturday, 11 October 2014

Two Views of The Warren

While little photographic evidence exists about the Warren at Marrickville, these are two lovely engravings that show how lovely this building was.

Thomas Holt's home appears as a backdrop to children's games and fun in this plate from March 1870. Jump rope and a lively game of cricket can be seen as some of the past times enjoyed by the children of the Victorian era.

By 1886 the Warren Estate had been purchased  by the Carmalite Nuns as a convent. At this time a more somber scene was engraved of the nuns heading to prayer.

Both images, and some other lovely old pictures of Marrickville can be found on the Dictionary of Sydney's webpage.

Monday, 6 October 2014

Heritage Lost: Marrickville Incinerator

The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954),
Friday 26 July 1912, page 11
The Marrickville Destructor was built in 1921. Located at the Marrickville Council Depot in It was a local land mark, standing 43.5 metres tall. The Destructor was economical to run, costing in today's currency about fifty cents for every ton of rubbish burnt.
Image Source: Kogarah City Council
It was located in Cecilia Street, Marrickville and only took Marrickville Council waste.
Staff were banned from taking waste for personal use, however you can see in the following picture a small kitten which they were able to rescue before it had been placed into the furnace.  The kitten survived a long time and was looked after by one of the workers who named him Indestructible or "Des" for short.
Image Source: Marrickville Council

If you check the SIX Maps, you will find a great puff of smoke showing it's location on the 1943 Aerial photographs database.

The Destructor was phased out in 1948 and later demolished. Marrickville Council then sent all of its waste to land fill.

REFERENCE: Marrickville Council

Saturday, 27 September 2014

Petersham Race Track

During the Dulwich Hill Fair, we were asked about the location of the local horse racing track. As promised, here is some information ....

This lovely picture is held by the Library of NSW entitled Race Meeting at Petersham (c. 1845)

The race meeting depicted here was held at the private racecourse of Thomas Shaw, licensee of the Woolpack Inn (now the Bald Faced Stag Hotel) on Parramatta Road at Leichhardt. The racecourse was situated on land leased by Shaw immediately opposite the hotel and extending back to the present railway line. Horseraces were regularly held on this course throughout the 1840s and subscribers, including well-known Sydney sportsmen, paid from 2s 6d to 1 guinea (21 shillings) to attend.

The view of the course is from the grandstand situated in Railway Street. Race entries were taken at Mr Oatley's Sportsman's Inn in the city five days before the meeting with advertisements stating: 'all the riders to appear in Jockey Costume'. This was in line with regulations introduced by the Australian Jockey Club, established in 1842. The jockeys are shown riding upright in the saddle, with long stirrups and reins, a practice that was continued until the late nineteenth century.

Reference: NSW Government Shop Online

Monday, 8 September 2014

James Start Harrison

We love comments from our readers, especially ones that point out an error. We try our best to bring you correct information, but research being what it is is not always perfect.

Recently Paul Cooper let us know the name of the resident who Harrison Street & Woodbury Street  was named after was incorrect. From the following article we can guess Mr Cooper is a relative, and somewhat more of an expert than this writer. So thank you for helping us.

After a quick search for the correct name, I was able to come across some more information about James Start Harrison. With such credentials it is a fitting tribute to have his name honoured in our streets.

Australian Town and Country Journal (Sydney, NSW:
 1870 - 1907), Saturday 15 March 1902, page 26

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