Then and Now 12

c. 1918

Morehead St

Lambton Park and Morehead St, circa 1918. Newcastle City Council, Hunter Photo Bank


Morehead St and Lambton Park, 2014

Morehead St and Lambton Park, 2014

The original photo was probably taken from an upper story balcony. To achieve a similar perspective in the 2014 photo I used a highly technical photographic method of gaffer taping my camera to a long pole and using the self timer.

Butter Battle

The_Hobbit_-_The_Battle_of_the_Five_Armies“Butter Battle” – not a reference to Dr Seuss’s little known, but excellent Cold War allegory, but my two word review of Peter Jackson’s third movie in The Hobbit saga, “The Battle of the Five Armies”.

Firstly, “Battle” – because that just about sums up the movie – not much else happens. The actual battle of five armies in Tolkien’s book takes up only 5 pages, but Peter Jackson somehow spins it out to encompass most of the 2hrs and 20mins of the movie. The scenes between the battle scenes, seem cursory, superfluous to the plot, with many of them additions not in the original story, added merely to give the viewer some respite before plunging into yet another predictable battle scene, with many of these also additions to the original story.

Secondly “Butter” – because to borrow words from a rather erudite author, adaptingĀ  just 50 pages of original story into a 2.5hr movie “feels all thin, sort of stretched, if you know what I mean: like butter that has been scraped over too much bread.”

Then and Now 11


View looking North towards Lambton from Lambton colliery railway bridge

View looking North towards Lambton from Lambton colliery railway bridge over tramline. University of Newcastle Cultural Collections.

This photograph is possibly taken on 9th September 1890, the day Lambton celebrated the turning on of the electric light system. In the centre of the photo adjacent to the road is an electric light pole. Just to the left of the pole in the distance can be seen St John’s Church of England in Morehead St. This is the old wooden church, so this photo predates 1907 when the wooden church was replaced with a brick one.
The tramline at the bottom of the photo is the Newcastle to Plattsburg tramline, which these days is Hobart Rd New Lambton. The road at the top is Howe St. On the far horizon, going up the hill, can be seen Dent St North Lambton.



Howe St and Hobart Rd, New Lambton

Lambton Panorama 1904

The University of Newcastle Cultural Collections has a photographic panorama of Lambton, taken from the top of Noble St in North Lambton in 1904. I have created an annotated version of this photograph with the following streets markedĀ  …

  • High St
  • Hill St
  • Young St (Newcastle Rd)
  • Morehead St
  • Howe St
  • Croudace St
  • Grainger St
  • Noble St

and the following items of interest marked …

  • Post Office
  • Mechanics Institute
  • Lambton Park Rotunda
  • Lambton Colliery railway bridges over the tramway and Howe St
  • Exchange Hotel (now Lambton Park Hotel)
  • Old Stone House in Howe St
  • Red Lion Inn
  • St Johns Church of England
  • Congregational Church
  • Site of Lambton Electric Light generating station
  • Lambton/Jesmond tramway cutting
  • Lambton Lodge (home of Thomas Croudace)
  • Lambton Public School

Annotated panorama of Lambton in 1904. Click on image for larger version. (6MB)

Any corrections or suggested additions to the annotations are welcome.

Technical note: The annotations were done using Visio 2013, but unfortunately Visio doesn’t handle exporting to raster image formats when there is a large image involved – it just gives a horribly unhelpful “Visio is unable to complete exporting” error message. To get around this, I exported to SVG format, then used the CloudConvert online image conversion site to convert the SVG to a JPG file.

Then and Now 10


Lambton NSW 1904

Lambton, looking south from North Lambton hill. University of Newcastle Cultural Collections.



Additional Information

Lambton Lodge

Croudace St slopes right to left up the hill. In the top right hand corner, Lambton Lodge, the home of Thomas Croudace can be seen. This house is now part of the hospital complex.

Red Lion Inn

The former Red Lion Inn (corner of Morehead St and Newcastle Rd) can be seen in the 1904 photograph, and in the lower photograph.

Site of Electric Light Generating station?

Site of Electric Light Generating station?

I believe that the empty site in the middle of this picture is the where the generating station for the electric lights in Lambton was located. The generators were situated between Young St (now Newcastle Rd) and High St, in a former quarry. The electric lighting scheme sent the council bankrupt, and the generators were sold off in 1904 and the building housing them demolished. An earlier photo of the generating station from 1890 (below) taken looking north from Young St/Newcastle Rd shows a long thin rectangular building behind it, and I believe this is the same rectangular building that can be seen in the photo above.

Lambton Electric Light Generating Station

Lambton Electric Light Generating Station 1890. Photo by Ralph Snowball. Newcastle City Council Hunter Photo Bank.

A close up from another photo of Lambton from 1900 (below), looking north, shows buildings that match the photo above.
Location of Lambton electric light generating station.

Location of Lambton electric light generating station.

Then and Now 7


Lambton Colliery. Photo by Ralph Snowball. University of Newcastle Cultural Collections.

Lambton Colliery. Photo by Ralph Snowball. University of Newcastle Cultural Collections.


Lewis Oval

Lewis Oval, New Lambton. Site of the former Lambton Colliery,.

Most of the photos in this “Then and Now” series highlight similarities – things that have remained relatively unchanged through the course of years. Today’s photos highlight difference. The site of the former Lambton colliery has been radically changed with the removal of all the colliery infrastructure and earthworks to create a sporting oval and behind the oval new housing subdivisions. The only point of similarity between the two photos is the outline of Sheperds Hill in the distance, on the horizon.