After intense winds swept away our sailing plans, we decided to drive home via Brooklyn, on Sydney’s Hawkesbury River. We were there a few weeks ago for a cruise but our connection with Brooklyn goes back even further. Geoff and I seriously considered buying a block of land in Brooklyn when we got engaged…almost 16 years ago. So, when we cam back for this wander around Brooklyn, it was also a case of exploring what might have been…our other life.
The railway arrived in 1877, making it less than an hour’s journey from Hornsby. A ferry service then conveyed passengers to Gosford.
When you first arrive at Brooklyn, you’ll soon notice this stone obelisk commemorating Governor Arthur Phillip’s first expedition of the Hawkesbury River. In March 1788, little more than a month after the arrival of the First Fleet, Governor Arthur Phillip led an expedition which explored the mouth of the Hawkesbury as far as Dangar Island, near Brooklyn. In June the following year, his second expedition reached as far as Wisemans Ferry. It was on this expedition that Phillip identified the river and named it in honour of Lord Hawkesbury, the president of the Board of Trade in Britain.
Fast-forwarding one hundred years, in 1877 the railway came to Brooklyn, although the town wasn’t established until 1884 when the Fagan Brothers subdivided their 100-acre grant. A ferry service conveyed passengers to Gosford, on the other side of the Hawkesbury River, until the Hawkesbury River Railway Bridge was completed in 1889.
I was receiving subliminal messages telling me I needed hot chips.
However, while they might have sold fish and chips, we had a a few chickens and even a rooster thrown in.
Indeed, the rooster had quite a lot of attitude.
I also admired this anchor hanging on the wall.
As we walked around the streets, we stumbled across the old Brooklyn Post Office with its very old mail slot referring to “GR”.
Ferries, fishing boats…the Brooklyn Marina is a great place to poke around and explore. This place is rustic with a capital R with all sorts of nooks and crannies which were paradise for the kids. It was hard work trying to keep them on the track but they weren’t the only ones who wandered off either. Remember, I was there with the Nikon Beast looking through my lens at every step, seeing through 6 x 4. That made for numerous detours and so much fun.
We also found some stunning native flowers:
I also loved this incredibly beautiful gum tree:
I wonder how old this tree would be and what it has seen. If only trees could talk!!
In case you get lost in Brooklyn, this sign could give you some idea of just how far you have to walk home:
However, you can easily visit Brooklyn by train, alighting at Hawkesbury River Station in the centre of town. Indeed, if you love a bit of train spotting, Brooklyn is a great place to see the trains up close just don’t brhereeathe in as the trains go past. The stench of burning brakes could seize your lungs. You might also enjoy watching the trains pass over the Hawkesbury River Railway Bridge.
Also, if you’re thinking about visiting Brooklyn , you could enjoy a Hawkesbury River history cruise. We took the cruise a few weeks ago and you can read about it here.
Meanwhile, we’re signing out for our first day of the school holidays.