Sunday, June 17, 2007

The Warren Shopping Centre


For those readers who don't live in Sydney, it's been raining for two weeks here. Storms, wind, horizontal sheets of water... and we're just not geared for it. Rain? Sydney? So we forget umbrellas, everyone under 30 still wears thongs (flip-flops) - which actually, when I come to think of it, are quite practical for getting through puddles. We shiver and complain and feel sorry for ourselves. But the gardens look great and the dams have filled up a bit which is excellent.

So. This is a photo taken in 1936, from the intersection of Illawarra and Warren Roads looking down the hill towards Earlwood. I think it was actually taken from a tram, as it's higher than I could manage. Those were the days! Trams in Sydney, how wonderful. See that the shop on the left still sells alcoholic beverages? Sad that the big balconies have gone.

11 comments:

Zoe said...

I'm loving these posts.

Adam said...

Is that near the Yeeros shop? Mmmm, I reckon I could eat on of those right now. Lamb, with tsatsiki... [Drools]

Matthew da Silva said...

Interesting that the corner shop still sells grog.

David said...

Are those the same people on the corner?
It is always a shock to be reminded that what we see as conventional 19th century retail buildings were actually meant to be adorned with verandahs, etc. What we see now are not exactly the skeletons of the buildings, but certainly a stripped-back version. The original designers/builders/owners would be quite affronted, probably, by the way many of these buildings look now.

Meredith said...

Thanks Zoe.

Adam, yes, I was standing in the middle of the road just near the yeeros shop. Must do that place as a shop of the week! They have the best greasiest chips in the West.

Matthew, I think it's probably always had an alcohol licence - too lucrative to change to anything else!

David, have you read Stewart Brand's "How Buildings Learn"? It's a really good meditation on the ways that facades change, and the cover photograph tells the whole story. I think that removing balconies and verandahs from Australian buildings is a bad mistake - it just makes them hotter.

Quink said...

Lovely to see the tramlines

R.H. said...

Well darlings the Rocks area in Sydney is stripped to buggary with all the old buildings there turned into cafes and souvenir shops. How lovely. Yes. And they've had plate glass windows put in, walls demolished, central heating installed, and lots more. And all of it totally necessary, because after all, who'd want to buy a latte or a plastic kangaroo in some crummy old building? If you keep things original you'll go broke.

Michael said...

Wow - just up the road from Excelsior Parade. I had no idea trams used to run down Illawarra Road! That would have been the way to get around! Thanks Meredith :-)

Meredith said...

I agree The Rocks is a travesty... it might as well have all been built brand new. It's like a theme park.

R.H. said...

It's tarted up, over-restored, with bits added on as well. Any occupant from that era wouldn't recognise it.
Down in Port Arthur I found what I thought was an over-restored chapel, but reading the fine print at the bottom of a board outside it gradually dawned on me that the only original part were the foundations; the whole thing had been demolished and re-built. It was a REPLICA.

(hush hush, naughty word)

JahTeh said...

I see more of those lovely sticking out windows which are very English. Thank you for sending Melbourne your weather, every door and window in the house is banging.