|Final look back at Hornsby.|
When we left Hornsby in the December of 1956, the eastern side of the railway line was all private housing, with just the odd corner shop scattered here and there, like the one my Grandma ran. On the western side of the railway line there was a triangle of retail outlets along the Pacific Highway, Coronation St, and Station St. However, that triangle is now a decomposing embarrassment. Once Westfield came along in 1961 and overwhelmed the eastside, the west was a goner.
|Two nowadays shots here showing what is left of our magical walk to school. Barry and I walked across the old pedestrian railway crossing - now replaced by an abomination albeit more functional - either around or through the shops on the triangle (around on the way TO school and THROUGH an arcade on the way HOME). We never had money to spend, but we had a lot of imaginative fun, with sticks, and baddies, and shortcuts. But that has all gone. There is no way I would let my grand-daughters walk that route to and from school.|
|No need to worry about that anyway, because the school that I went to (Hornsby Infants showing me front row second from left) was burnt down one Saturday in November 1957 when a raging bushfire stormed up the valley at the back of the school. The mixed Infants school was cinders, the girls primary school was cinders, and the girls 'home economics' high school (up to 3rd form only) was cinders. On the eastern side of the highway the boys primary, and the boys high school was each saved. My father had gone to both of those from 1931, and Barry was in Grade 5 before we left for our incredibly great/foolhardy adventure in the country.|