Dawes Point, New South Wales
Sydney, New South Wales
Sydney Harbour Bridge, viewed from Observatory Hill
|Population||357 (2016 census)|
|• Density||3,600/km2 (9,000/sq mi)|
|Area||0.1 km2 (0.0 sq mi)|
|Location||1 km (1 mi) north of Sydney CBD|
|LGA(s)||City of Sydney|
Dawes Point is a suburb of the City of Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. Dawes Point is located on the north-western edge of the Sydney central business district, at the southern end of Sydney Harbour Bridge, adjacent to The Rocks. At times Dawes Point has been considered to be part of The Rocks, or known as West Rocks, part of Millers Point, or part of it known as Walsh Bay.
The area was originally known by the Aboriginal names of Tar-ra and Tullagalla. This was later changed to Point Maskelyne in honour of Reverend Dr Nevil Maskelyne, British Astronomer Royal. He sent out the first astronomical instruments which were established at the point in the country's first observatory, by Lieutenant William Dawes (1762-1836), astronomer with the First Fleet. The point was renamed in honour of Dawes.
It was also the site of the first guns mounted in Sydney by Dawes in 1788, contained Sydney's first cemetery and later Dawes Point Battery. Walsh Bay was the site of Sydney's port facilities. The wharves were converted to apartments, theatres, restaurants, cafes and a hotel.
By the 1840s, the people of Dawes Point and Millers Point were a maritime community in which rich and poor mixed more than elsewhere in Sydney. Wharf owners and traders lived and worked beside those who worked on the wharves and bond stores, as well as those who arrived and left on ships. Only two of the merchant houses, built by and for the early wharf owners, survive. One is Walker's 50-foot wide villa built around 1825 and now part of Milton Terrace at 7-9 Lower Fort Street; the other is the home and offices of Edwards and Hunter, built in 1833 above their wharves which is where the Wharf Theatre now stands.
The fortunes of Dawes Point and Millers Point fluctuated more than elsewhere in Sydney. Mostly prosperous in its early years, the area was less desirable by the 1890s, and in 1900 there was a catastrophic event that led to a complete reshaping of Millers Point.
At the beginning of the 20th century, the government compulsorily acquired all private wharves, homes and commercial properties in the Rocks, Dawes Point and Millers Point. Modern and efficient wharves with dual level access were built, as well as new accommodation for workers, such as the Workers Flats of Lower Fort Street designed by Government Architect Vernon.
Most people still believe this redevelopment can be attributed entirely to an outbreak of plague in 1900, with the government acting benevolently as it demolished homes as well as wharves, and not for the last time decimated a community, while presenting their actions as ‘slum clearance’. In the 1960s and ’70s, the government tried again to clear the area and build high-rise offices, but this was thwarted by the Green Bans, supported by community and unions.
Following the Green Bans, and its most prominent campaign, The Battle for The Rocks, urban planning included more community consultation. The Rocks Green Ban was lifted so the Sirius Building could be built to house those displaced by The Rocks redevelopment and to house members of the maritime community whose families had lived in The Rocks, Dawes Point and Millers Point since the earliest years of the Colony.
During 2014-18 the New South Wales Government embarked on a final and ultimately successful clearance of The Rocks, Dawes Point and Millers Point. All but a handful of social housing tenants were displaced from the Millers Point area, and the government is proceeding with the sale of the Sirius Building, which, if demolished, would result in it "returning the skyline" to the people of Sydney.
Dawes Point has a number of heritage-listed sites, including:
- 37 Lower Fort Street: Dawesleigh
- Bradfield Highway and North Shore railway: Sydney Harbour Bridge
- 8-12 Trinity Avenue: Darling House c1833-1842 (p6)
- 1-19 Lower Fort Street: Milton Terrace
- 21-23 Lower Fort Street, Millers Point: Nicholson’s Cottages
- 25-33 Lower Fort Street: Linsley Terrace
- 35 Lower Fort Street: Major House
- 39-41 Lower Fort Street: John Verge Townhouses
- 43 Lower Fort Street: Bligh House (Clydebank)
- 47-53 Lower Fort Street: Palermo Terrace
- 55 Lower Fort Street
- 57-61 Lower Fort Street: Flavelle Terrace
- 63-65 Lower Fort Street
- 69-73 Lower Fort Street
- 75-77 Lower Fort Street
- 79 Lower Fort Street
- 81 Lower Fort Street, The Hero of Waterloo Hotel
In the 2016 Census, there were 357 people in Dawes Point. 63.8% of people were born in Australia and 76.2% of people only spoke English at home. The most common response for religion was No Religion at 39.9%.
The Sydney Opera House seen from Dawes Point
- Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Dawes Point (State Suburb)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 2 July 2017.
- The Book of Sydney Suburbs, Compiled by Frances Pollon, Angus & Robertson Publishers, 1990, Published in Australia ISBN 0-207-14495-8, page 81
- "1840". MILLERS POINT.
- "37 & 35 Lower Fort Street". MILLERS POINT.
- "The Workers Flats of Millers Point". MILLERS POINT.
- "Why Sirius Matters – Save Our Sirius". Retrieved 10 March 2019.
- "Dawesleigh". New South Wales State Heritage Register. Office of Environment and Heritage. H00522. Retrieved 18 May 2018.
- "Sydney Harbour Bridge, approaches and viaducts (road and rail)". New South Wales State Heritage Register. Office of Environment and Heritage. H00781. Retrieved 18 May 2018.
- Casey and Lowe Associates (1994). Excavation Report, Darling House, Millers Point. NSW Department of Housing.
- "39-41 Lower Fort Street, Millers Point", Wikipedia, 10 February 2019, retrieved 10 March 2019
- "47-53 Lower Fort Street, Millers Point", Wikipedia, 24 February 2019, retrieved 10 March 2019
- "55 Lower Fort Street, Millers Point", Wikipedia, 15 January 2019, retrieved 10 March 2019
- "75-77 Lower Fort Street, Millers Point", Wikipedia, 10 February 2019, retrieved 10 March 2019
- "79 Lower Fort Street, Millers Point", Wikipedia, 17 January 2019, retrieved 10 March 2019
- "History | The Hero of Waterloo - The Rocks, Sydney, Australia. Established 1843. Live music, award winning food, ghost tours and a heritage landmark classification it is a must when visiting The Rocks, the birthplace of the nation, to include a visit and soak up the atmosphere at this convict-built hotel". Retrieved 10 March 2019.
Media related to Dawes Point, New South Wales at Wikimedia Commons
- Fitzgerald, Shirley (2008). "Dawes Point". Dictionary of Sydney. Retrieved 26 September 2015. [CC-By-SA]