The place where I work

My office sits on the border between Parramatta (one of Sydney’s secondary CBDs) and Harris Park (one of Sydney’s tinier suburbs). As I have got to know the place, Harris Park has become one of my favourite suburbs. If it didn’t get so sweltering in the summer I think it would be one of my favourite places to live.

One of the reasons I love Harris Park is because it is so obviously a community in flux. Since European settlement 200 hundred or so years ago it has gone from the home of wealthy white farmers (on the ouskirts of Parramatta) to the home of less wealthy white workers (living in terraces and cottages) to to the home of newly arrived Southern European migrants (starting off poor and working their way up to independence and comfort) and finally to the present population of Indian migrants settled densely in apartments and rapidly changing the streetscape. A simple walk around Harris Park will leave you marvelling at all the exposed layers of history in the suburb – apparent from the buildings and the people. It’s almost feels like you are some kind of social archaeologist looking at everything around you as though they were layers of stratified soil.

Without further ado, here are some pictures I took about a year ago on one of my walks:

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Looking across the parkland of Expriment Farm to the Parramatta CBD.

History

Harris Park was the site of some of Sydney’s earliest settlements.

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Experiment Farm, settled in 1789.

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Peering at one of the old farmhouses through the fence.

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Experiment Farm fence.

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Pathway to the main farmhouse.

Houses

There is something for everyone. Although, of course, in this day and age most of us can only afford the last option…

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There are mansions,

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Stately stand alones,

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Large historical cottages divided into share houses,

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Small historical cottages, undivided…

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… but packed together pretty tightly!

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And the ubiquitous red brick araprtment blocks.

Horticulture

The people that don’t live in apartments maintain some mean gardens!

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Roses,

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Roses,

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Roses,

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And more roses.

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Beautiful bougainvillea.

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It’s not all ornamental – a number of homes have vegetable gardens that provide all their fresh food needs!

On the streets: The old guard

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They make my favourite baklava (even better than Alba’s!).

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I buy my egg dye from here at easter.

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Co.As.It have closed their offices here since I took this picture. I think it’s a sign that the old guard are actually disappearing.

On the streets: The new guard

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India Bazaar.

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Video store.

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Draw in the crowds with everyone’s favourite Bollywood star.

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There are a million delicious places to eat.

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although I haven’t eaten at all of them yet.

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Advertisements in my favourite restaurant.

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Sometimes I wish I could get away with wearing a sari.

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Jewellery.

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Streetfront signage at the local astrologer’s.

For more pictures of Harris Park, check out Louise Hawson’s incredible collection for 52 Suburbs.

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4 thoughts on “The place where I work

    1. Alison Post author

      No, no more working farms, just pretty old buildings. Although most of the houses that have turned their backyards into massive vegetable gardens are, interestingly, right near the old farm houses! I like to think they are trying to keep the spirit of farming alive!

      Reply
  1. pinhead22886

    Wow, Louise’s blog is awesome! I love her post about Maroubra! She really captures the laid back, unpretentious attitude! “…as long as the surf keeps pumping, the paint can keep peeling and no-one will care.” So true!

    Reply

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