Sunday, 24 May 2015

Sussex Street Pubs - 2 - The Dundee arms


The Dundee Arms started life adjacent to the Corn Exchange in Sussex Street North. It backed onto the Market Street Wharf, which was by far the biggest wharf in Darling Harbour of that time. It is now a part of the Sheraton Four Points hotel, which refurbished it in 1991. Prior to that and for most of the 20th century it was in a very poor state. In 1907 it was converted into office space, and the first floor verandah removed. Between 1927 and the early 1970s (when the wrecking ball for the Western Distributor started to swing), it was known as Kermac House.


The Dundee Arms was built by John Robertson in 1860, who hailed from Scotland. A timber merchant, he had purchased the plot in 1847 for just over ₤212. Where the deck is now (along the southern wall) which is a quasi beer-garden, was Wharf Lane which joined to the currently non-existing Wharf Street which disappeared with the creation of Day Street in 1906, as a consequence of the massive demolitions caused by the bubonic plague.

The left 1860 image shows the Robertson family posing with their newly-built hotel. John is sitting on the stoop. Note the steep fall-away of Wharf Lane, as it then was. The right 1983 image shows Wharf Lane, and the nearly unrecognisable "Dundee Arms" dressed in its very sad guise as KERMAC House. Wharf Lane is still there behind the cyclone fencing. Wharf Lane is still there today, just beneath some decking, otherwise the lower cellars are inaccessible.


9 comments:

William Kendall said...

A good name, and I like the look of the building.

Kate said...

What a lovely railing around that building. Now that's a public house I would love to visit. Excellent vintage photo!

Pasadena Adjacent said...

Glad you pointed out the steepness of hill it was built atop of. The present day photos don't show that at all.

Lynette said...

Goodness, I'm very happy that this building has been cared for and has its wrought iron again. Thank goodness that 1983 facade is long gone!

diane b said...

Breat then and now pics. It is looking good now.

Joe said...

The Dundee Arms has had many lives Julie. Let us hope it has many more.

Jim said...

Not familiar with this one. I'll have to look for it.

Scott&Bill Tarmac said...

Lovely post Julie. Do you know the source of the c1860 photo?

Julie said...

My apologies. Here is where I located the image http://www.shfa.nsw.gov.au/sydney-About_us-Heritage_role-Heritage_and_Conservation_Register.htm&objectid=156 right down the end of the report. They say here that the image is copyright to the SL-NSW.

The image of its time as Kermac House comes from the archives of the City of Sydney.