Friday, 9 July 2010

The escape of the cracksmen


In 1836 a gang of four petty crims blasted open the safe in the London Custom's house and scarpered with 4,370 quid. Ready to live the high life, they cum a cropper when one of their lot was busted for another misdemeaner and to save his lousy neck, squealed. They was sentenced to def, but twas commuted to live at t'other end of the known world.

Swinging in the hammocks on a cold and wet winter's day in Sydney Town, we listened to their story on the top floor of Hyde Park Barracks. They pretty soon clocked to the fact that HPB was neither fenced nor policed. They was free to come and go - so they went. Well two of em did - the other two were lost in the mists of history.



Jumping puddles the 50 or so intrepid history buffs, followed the cracksmen down the streets of Sydney Town and caught a ferry out into the cove, under the bridge and out to the penal settlement on Goat Island. We chased them all over the island, along with the hapless Seargeant from the 4th Regiment of the King's Own Rifles, his two young privates, plus his Master-o-the-cat-o-nine-tails (it's school holidays here at the moment, so these young lads had a ball).

This is the way to get the populace involved with history: dramatise a vignette involving the story of real people. The tour guides and the professional actress were absolutely terrific. I will go to each and every one of these that they create.

Terrific collaboration between the Historic Houses Trust and the National Parks & Wildlife service.

Bravo!

15 comments:

Luis Gomez said...

Sounds great Julie. What a nice post.

Andrew said...

Interesting tale. Re the tour guide, how wonderful it is to hear people talk with passion.

altadenahiker said...

What a fantastic idea.

Bill said...

Great story Julie togeffer wif the pichgers.

J Bar said...

Great post, Julie.

Joan Elizabeth said...

What a great idea. They look like giant european wasps in those outfits.

Bruce Caspersonn said...

Good work. Thank Heaven you are back where you belong (Sydney) Julie.

Ann said...

That looks like great fun.

Ann said...

No grandsprog yet?

brattcat said...

You were clearly caught up in the fun and excitement judging by this post.

Julie said...

Nope, no grandsprog yet. Not next week either according to the obstetrician. Which pushes us to the week of my daughter's own birthday.

Rinkly Rimes said...

What a great day out! That's the way to learn about history.

diane said...

What a hoot and a fun way to experience history. Wish i had those type of lessons in high school.I enjoyed something similar on Norfolk Island.

jennyfreckles said...

That looks such fun - what a great way to learn history.

IWASNTBLOGGEDYESTERDAY said...

I love history, and history and fun!!!