Blog Archives

Lorikeets and Sturt’s Desert Peas


Throughout 1938, a variety of activities were organised to mark the 150th anniversary of European settlement in Australia.

Local schools participated in the Public School Children’s Festival held at the Sydney Cricket Ground in April 1938. Girls from Strathfield North Public School’s 5th class wore Sturt’s Desert Pea costumes while the boys were dressed as Lorikeets. Lorna Wright recalls the event at North Strathfield Neighbourhood Stories.

The photograph shows the Sturt’s Desert Peas practising their dance routine in the playground at Strathfield North with a flock of lorikeets (and Correys Avenue) in the background.

Historic home at the heart of Domremy

At the centre of Domremy College is the fine mansion built for Arthur William Sutton (1839-1913) and his wife Emily Mary Sutton in 1878.

Sutton was the first Mayor of Five Dock. The house was originally called Delapré and was probably named after Delapré Abbey, the Convent of St Mary De La Pré near Northampton, UK. Delapré is believed to have been designed by architect Benjamin Backhouse. The Sutton family moved out of Delapré in 1896 and subsequent owners included Dr C. S. Gibbons, W. G. Crockett and Patrick James Cashman.

In 1910 it was sold to the Sacred Heart Presentation Order of the Roman Catholic Church who renamed it the ‘Domremy Presentation Convent’ after Domrémy, France, the birthplace of Joan of Arc.

What are your memories of Domremy College?

As busy as bees

Drummoyne Public School opened on 7 April 1886 with 32 students. The school’s first building was a temporary wooden structure. This was later replaced by a brick building which could accommodate 170 students. More buildings were added as student numbers continued to grow due to the rapid increase in the population of Drummoyne in the early 1900s.

In 1910 Drummoyne Public School became the first school in NSW to be provided with an Assembly Hall. However, by the time it had been completed, the increase in student numbers meant there was a shortage of classrooms. The new Assembly Hall was divided into four open classrooms, one of which had a seating capacity for 64 students.

The photograph shows the infant class being taught in the Assembly Hall in 1910. The writing on the blackboard reads, ‘Bees make honey’. Lesson plans were simpler a hundred years ago.

Five Dock Public School

Five Dock Public School began in 1861 with 36 pupils in a stone building in the grounds of St Alban’s Anglican Church. It continued as a denominational school until 1876 when it transferred to a new building with teacher’s residence in West Street, Five Dock.

The photograph above is of the ‘Boys’ school’ in about 1921. A separate Girls’ department was established in 1920.

To coincide with the 75th anniversary, Souvenir of the Five Dock Public School Jubilee, 1861-1936 was published, recording the early years of the school. This booklet is now quite rare so it has been digitised and added to Canada Bay Connections image library.

What are your memories of Five Dock Public School?