Sound the alarm! Shark nets at Coogee

It’s summer, and for many of us, that means swimming in the sea. There has been a long tradition in Sydney of enclosing ocean bathing areas a nets to protect bathers from sharks, but the consequences of decisions about shark nets that were made in the 1920s and...

James Waugh’s Stranger’s Guide to Sydney

We’ve all used a tourist guide when we’ve visited a new city. They can help us orientate ourselves, to find the landmarks we want to see, and understand the locals. But have you ever wondered about Sydney’s first tourist guides? I recently had the...

The Great Fire of Sydney

Just after 2 o’clock in the morning on 2 October 1890 the alarm was raised after a “lurid glare” was seen in the upper windows of the large warehouse of Gibbs, Shallard & Co on Hosking Place, just off Pitt Street. It was a calamitous fire that changed Sydney’s...