All Cars Service Station at the corner Parramatta Road and Great North Road, Five Dock claimed to be ‘The World’s Largest Filling Station’. An advertisement in The Story of Drummoyne (1940) explained, ‘In the older world there are Filling Stations that cover a larger area than ‘All Cars’, but they have not the number of pumps nor such a large and convenient service area. If you call at this station you will be satisfied that it is the world’s largest, and for service and civility -the world’s best.’
Local Studies holds a copy of the architect W. L. Knispel’s block plan for the ‘Proposed Service Station at Five Dock for W. Smythe Esq’.
The site was originally occupied by the Arlington Hotel which was built about 1850. All Cars has now disappeared but the site’s association with motoring continues through the Audi dealership and Five Dock Smash Repairs (which appears to be part of the original All Cars Service Station building).
Rothwell and Cullen’s Four Ways Gas Service Station, located on the corner of Parramatta and Concord Roads, Concord, was the latest in modern service station design when it was built in 1939.
In the years following World War II, the business under the direction of Ed Cullen, transformed into a car dealership.
While the site has undergone many changes since this photograph was taken, it has had a continuous association with the motor trade for over seventy years.
Parramatta Road looked more like a country road in 1900, about the time this photograph was taken.
The photograph shows Parramatta Road at the ‘7 mile post’, near Five Dock. Milestones were situated at one mile intervals along the Parramatta Road showing the distances to Sydney and Parramatta.
In 1942, Australia was under threat of invasion and the New South Wales Premier directed that all the distances be removed from the milestones along the main roads so as to confuse an invading Imperial Japanese Army. After the War the milestones were re carved.
A rare survival of one of the early milestones with the mileage shown in Roman numerals can be seen on the grounds of Concord Library at Flavelle Street, Concord. It was removed prior to World War II from the intersection of Parramatta Road and Mosely Street, Strathfield.