"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it" aphorised George Santayana.
The old Rozelle Tram Sheds are alongside the Johnson Creek canal tucked in behind Harold Park Paceway. They have been vandalised in an overwhelmingly tragic and demeaning manner. Trams are a sorely missed iconic reminder of our city's past: a reminder of the foolish deeds of politicians and the futile fad-following of the hoi polloi.
|Many thanks to Peter Liebeskind for the above two images. He has been most generous with access to his Flickr site|
The Rozelle Tram Sheds opened in 1904 and closed in 1958. Ownership rested with the government for 50 years until being transferred to the NSW Harness Racing Corp in 2002. The damage had been done during those 50 years of neglect. Now these buildings and their contents cannot be given away.
Here, in 1955, an O class tram (thanks to Bruce Caspersonn who corrected an error in the text here) rattles out of the sheds, along the canal and into The Crescent heading up Ross Street towards Parramatta Road and, thence, into the city to its terminus at Fort Macquarie (Bennelong Point). This trip was two sections and cost 1/-.
With all the developments in the preceding 54 years, it is difficult to reproduce the '55 image. The curve is now underneath the circular overhang of the pacing track - it was too dangerous to venture under there. Standing as close as I could - would that I had the guts to jump into the canal! - I took a photograph to the south (the concrete monstrosity) and to the north (the canal).
Such a sobering set of images ... Let us pay tribute to the past and to its people.
Image 1: Taken in 1930 as a tram heads West up Broadway just prior to turning into Glebe Point Road. Sydney University is on the left.
Image 2: Taken in 1957 as trams turn to their right from Parramatta Road into Glebe Point Road.
Image 3: Taken in 1958 as a tram progresses along Glebe Point Road.
|I also wish to extend my appreciation to LindsayBridge for access to the superb set of tram images on his Flickr site|