The lost chambers of Lambton

My latest article for the Lambton and New Lambton Local is out, this month on the Lambton Courthouse, that was opened in 1879 and demolished in 1937.

An unexpected outcome of researching this article is that I discovered a few places I didn’t know about before, where council chambers either existed or were planned, in Waratah and in Lambton.

In Lambton, I discovered that before the council was even a year old, in January 1872, it applied to the Minister for Lands to have an area in Dickson St set aside for Council chambers. The land was never used for that purpose. The courthouse was built on the adjoining block in 1877-78, and the block originally intended for the council was resumed in 1886 for the construction of the police barracks and lockup.

The same drain

Having established with reasonable certainty that Ralph Snowball’s 6 April 1900 drain photo was located in Hamilton North adjacent to the old gasworks site, I visited the spot yesterday to take a modern photo.

Drain construction workers, 6 April 1900. Photo by Ralph Snowball. University of Newcastle, Cultural Collections.

The stormwater drain at Hamilton North, March 2017.

 

Lambton Colliery, 1944

In a previous article I wrote about finding parch marks in Lewis Oval, and suggested that they were due to the railway cutting and tunnel of the former Lambton Colliery. I recently obtained a scan of a 1944 aerial photograph of Lambton from the Local Studies section of Newcastle Library. By overlaying the photograph in Google Earth I can see that my guess was spot on.

The former Lambton Colliery, September 1944.

The site of the Lambton Colliery, 2016. Google Earth.

The 1944 aerial photo overlaid onto Google Earth.

Corlette St and the Newcastle Cricket Ground

Mike Scanlon had an interesting article in yesterday’s Newcastle Herald about the appearance of the famous English cricketer W.G. Grace at a cricket match in Newcastle 125 years ago, on Friday 5th February 1892. The Newcastle Morning Herald had a report of the match on the following day.

“The match between 12 members of Lord Sheffield’s team of cricketers and 20 members of clubs in the Newcastle district was commenced on the Newcastle Cricket Ground yesterday.”

The only surviving remnant of the Newcastle Cricket Club is the odd little reserve in the middle of Corlette St in Cooks Hill.

Corlette St, Cooks Hill. Google Maps.

Corlette St, Cooks Hill. Google Earth.

Corlette St originally only extended as far south as Parry St. T. S. Parrott’s 1893 map shows an unlabelled rectangle in the area between Parry and Tooke Streets.

Corlette St, Cooks Hill. 1893.

Corporal Barrett’s 1910 map shows the area marked as a “Football Ground”.

Corlette St, Cooks Hill. 1910. University of Newcastle, Cultural Collections.

By 1917 the sporting ground had gone, and the area had been subdivided by the A.A. Company and was being sold off at an auction on 1st December 1917.

Corlette St, Cooks Hill. 1917. University of Newcastle Cultural Collections.

Confirmation that this is the site of the W.G. Cricket match comes in a short newspaper piece spruiking the auction.

“The sites are portion of the A.A. Company’s Cook’s Hill Estate, which embraces the old Newcastle Cricket Ground area.”