What I’m about …

I am a resident of the harbour city of Sydney … no, I’m not talking about Sydney, Nova Scotia – or even Sydney, North Dakota. I’m talking about that obscure, little speck of a metropolis on the Western Pacific map, the principal port in the state that bears the geographically-confusing name of New South Wales!

My Blog will explore some of the interests I have in subjects such as travel, bushwalking, history, international relations, politics, media and cinema, gender and race, literature and language, sport (I am interested in the intersection of sport and politics), society and culture, higher education, the built environment and writing.

E Curb Nottus

5 thoughts on “What I’m about …

  1. Hi, I like your site. Just a few things you should change in your Homebush Bay article. Correct in a latter comment that Homebush Racecourse was not the first in Sydney. There was Hyde Park (1810 to 1820’s), then another where Syd Uni is now (1820’s) . Even Randwick pre-dates the Homebush Course (1830’s) however called “the Sandy Track”, it was not popular at first. Homebush Track opened in 1841. Homebush was a “downs course” (undulating, not flat) and was the favourite course until Randwick was heavily modified around 1860. After the AJC moved to Randwick, the Homebush Course also upgraded and still held major races into the 1870’s and still being used for athletics in the late 1880’s. It was never turned into Market Gardens. That bit is incorrect. It became ‘resting paddocks’ for the Homebush Abattoirs around 1910. Also, Darcy Wentworth didn’t name Homebush. He acquired the land from Quartermaster Thomas Laycock and simply retained Laycock’s name of the farm (Home Bush). Wentworth added more land to Homebush yet didn’t name it. It wasn’t a Village. It was simply a farm estate. As well, did you say Bicentennial Park was part of the Olympic re-development ? Nope. the Park was opened in January 1988 and pre-dates other work involved in the Olympics by a number of years. Anyway besides pointing out these bits, I enjoy your website and Best Wishes. , Dave at Homebush

    1. Hi Dave,

      Thanks for your detailed local knowledge of the area, pointers & corrections.

      I think some of the things about the association of Homebush with Randwick I got from the information board near the children’s playground on the Common, so they may have been inadequately researched by the Council. You are right Hyde Park unquestionably predates other claimants for 1st racecourse in Sydney (didn’t know about there being another course on Sydney U land from 1820s – interesting!)

      Thanks for clarifying the nature of the type of racecourse, a Downs course, not flat, very different! I wondered on occasions when visiting Wentworth Common about the dirt track that runs down towards the Archery Centre & then loops around the marker mound, if that had been a racetrack at any point(?)

      Yes I did read it somewhere else too – Thomas Laycock (not WC Wentworth) for genesis of the name “Home Bush”. I’m not sure if I did indicate that Bicentennial Park was part of the Olympic project, but if I did, this is clearly not right, the Park being to do with what happened in 1988, not 2000.

      Thanks again for the information, & for your interest in my blog – I will make some amendments to the piece.

      Cheers,

      Curb

      1. Hi, Thanks for your reply. Homebush Racecourse was opposite the old Ford Factory and extending down to what is now the front of Bicentennial Park. Basically behind the Wentworth Hotel.The original track ran next to the small watercourse called Boundary Creek. Yet in the 1860’s they moved the course in an attempt to flatten it out. This was achieved by building an earthen bridge 200 metres long and 20 metres wide over the top of the creek that the horses raced over. This earth bridge was filled further to create the Olympic Park Golf Driving Range, now re-developed as a playing field. Boundary Creek has been diverted around the side of it. The main racecourse straight basically followed Sarah Durack .Avenue. The grandstand was also along this straight. Cheers, Dave

        1. Thanks for this Dave … you’re certainly the go-to source for background info on Homebush area yesterdays!

          Regards.

          C.

          1. My pleasure. I’ve been researching the early history of my area (Homebush) for around 15 yrs in an attempt to straighten out some of the myths and I’ve busted many. The truths are actually way more interesting. Particular interests are early land grants, early Inns and hotels, most now demolished, and of course the Racecourse.
            If you require any info let me know. My best Wishes. Dave

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