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23 minutes | Oct 20, 2021
Not only a Statue but an Obelisk as well - Allan Cunningham
There is a statue of Allan Cunningham on the Bent Street frontage of the Lands Department , at the corner with Loftus Street. There is an obelisk to his memory in a pond in the Botanical Gardens, just near the kiosk.As if that was not enough- the Federal Electorate of Cunningham commemorates him; Cunninghams Gap ( which is the access from the coast to Toowoomba ) commemorates his discovery of it and the Cunningham Highway ( which runs from Ipswich 327 kms to Goondiwindi ), is named in his honor.He has certainly left his mark.He was first and foremost , a botanist , and discovery was used to allow him to collect and record plants.This pod sketches the life of a very well travelled person.
33 minutes | Aug 4, 2021
Mr George Bass
Naval Surgeon, Explorer, Adventurer, and perhaps a would-be Smuggler George Bass was an extraordinary person, enormously talented and incredibly brave. It was her, together with Matthew Flinders who carried out early exploration from the infant colony at Sydney by traveling down the south coast and ultimately proving there was a large body of water between what is now Victoria and Tasmania. previously maps had all been drawn with Tasmania drawn connected to the “northern island”. He was an extraordinary man but was never fully recognised in a public way for his efforts. He was highly regarded by those who knew him well, referring to him with phrases such as “ingenious, enterprising, and remarkable” - praise any of us would be overwhelmed to have applied to ourselves. Despite that, history didn’t treat him well and he is often overshadowed by Flinders. The best indication of which is that no one wrote a biography of him until 1952. There is a subsequent one but it took all that time for someone to tell us about this wonderful man. He is one of the statues on the Lands Department building, on the Northern Facade of the building. It is truly extraordinary how much he packed into 32 years, the entire span of his life. If you asked ten Australians who George Bass is or what he did, not many could do it but hopefully this will help close that gap.
18 minutes | Feb 18, 2021
To Observatory Hill Sydney's Forgotten Gem
If you are visiting Sydney, and only have a day or two and you’re wondering what the best thing would be to do. Then I don’t think there’s much doubt that you should go up to Observatory hill. It’s a little bit out of the way so it has the benefit that it’s not too crowded, but it gives you some marvelous views of Sydney Harbour, particularly to the west. There’s also a delightful park that surrounds it. On top of all that there’s the Observatory itself, which is particularly interesting. What a visit to this spot does is it really tells you a lot about getting an overall sense of Sydney. You get an idea of the geography of Sydney , the topography, the development of the European settlements, the history of the place, and the scientific endeavors that went on in the observatory. It is simply a gem.
19 minutes | Feb 4, 2021
Windmills and Millers Point
In this episode we return to Churchill, which is on the Rocks Ridge, and move away from the valley of the tank stream heading down towards Darling Harbour, and millers point. On the way, we mention why gas lane is called gas lane, and also go past two very interesting and historic buildings called the Glover Cottages and the Richmond villa. Moving along the eastern side of Kent street, we come to the Agar stairs. Then we turn down high street and turn down to really have a look at the Darling Harbour, Millers Point area. Indeed, there was down on millers point in the very early 1800s, three wooden post windmills. We’ll say a little bit about those and particularly owner of the first windmill who was obviously quite a character. That will then bring us back to finish for this episode at the Lord Nelson hotel which dates back to the 1840s.
21 minutes | Dec 10, 2020
An amble in Randwick leads to a story about a most interesting person
An amble in Randwick gives glimpses of the founding and development of the area together with some potted histories of a number of significant early homes. The amble leads to a reference to one, Commodore Goodenough. Apart from having a striking name, he was also an interesting person. He left quite a legacy, given his early and untimely death.
27 minutes | Jul 5, 2020
Sydney - A City Of Windmills
This episode takes us up Grosvenor Street to Church Hill. During the 19th Century , this was a very fashionable area. This was probably due to the elevation and views. It is not easy to see those attributes these days. Church Hill was also the site of one of three Government Windmills which ran along the ridge which now gives access to the Harbour Bridge. This tells of that windmill ( built to last 200 years , but blown down in a storm after a year or so ) and also of the three Grand Hotels which once graced The Hill. The area carries a lot of traffic from the Bridge but is not crowded. It is well worth an amble. The walk up Grosvenor goes past a number of historic buildings. An added plus is that Lang Park does have sunshine in the early afternoon in Winter. Enjoy your amble
18 minutes | Jun 17, 2020
Who was Peter Dodds McCormick?
Most Australians should know this name. I suspect however, that most like me had never heard of this person. That changed for me when I serendipitously noticed an obscure plaque near the entrance to The Scots Church in Margaret Street, Sydney. This is the story of Peter Dodds McCormick.
19 minutes | Jun 9, 2020
The imposing statue of T. S. Mort dominates the southern edge of Macquarie Place , which is opposite the Lands Department Building. Mort was an interesting and complex person who arrived in Sydney in 1838 aged 21 years. He came with very little money. In the 40 years til his death he rose to become a very prominent and successful business man. He was very community minded, giving both time and money to many causes. One of those causes was Horticulture. He was an avid gardener. The gardens around his home were some of the finest in the colony. More than 1000 people attended the unveiling of the statue by the then Governor in June 1883. That speaks volumes as to the regard in which he was held. Have a sit in the Place and admire the statue whilst his story is told. There are worse places to sit , than outside the nearby Customs House Hotel. I remember it with affection from my misspent youth !! Happy ambling.
23 minutes | May 28, 2020
Sydney's Connection To The South Seas
Near the western end of Bridge Street, there is a wonderful Victorian Building called Burns Philip House. It is worth just standing and quietly taking it in, as unusual as such behaviour is for us all these days. This episode focuses on this building, its origins and the people who founded the company that occupied it for many years. The Burns Philip Company was a shipping and freight company in the South Pacific Seas, hence the title. It also pioneered tourism to the islands , including New Guinea , in the early 20th Century. The episode then touches upon some nearby points of interest. Happy ambling. If you would like to contact me, head to my website: http://urbanambling.com/
22 minutes | May 28, 2020
Perhaps The Finest Street In Sydney
Someone once said that Bridge Street in Sydney was the finest of its streets, in a place that has a lot of competitors for that title. I will not debate that question, but simply say that it is one of my favourites. It has a wonderful set of Victorian Public Buildings and leads, at the eastern end, to the Botanic Gardens and the Conservatorium of Music. It is said to have the largest number of statues of any street in Australia!! It does have a lot, especially on the facade of the very gracious Lands Department Building. Ambling around that building alone would happily occupy a bit of time. This episode gives an introduction to the western end of the street and provides historical details, including one of the Lands Department statues. It is made to accompany you on your walk! Happy, and hopefully informative, walking If you would like to contact me, head to my website: http://urbanambling.com/
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