Trevor Howells led the walk through CBD
The Society was very privileged to have the services
of Trevor Howells, senior lecturer in Architecture at the
University of Sydney, as a Guest Tour Leader for our exploration
of the southern precinct of Sydney’s CBD.
Trevor’s knowledge of and enthusiasm for his subject
was immediately evident as he took us through Central Railway,
discussing the history and the striking features of the construction.
It was a beautiful Sydney day of the kind former Premier Bob
Carr used to publicly commend to us, and we soon were striding
the streets of lower Sydney, attempting to keep up with Trevor’s
slow gallop, so keen was he to show us the fine buildings
that grace this quarter and explain the detail behind what
we were looking at.
Rawson Place in particular inspired him and I must say I had
not previously realised how intact the streetscape from George
Street up to Central Station is.
Moving north, we had to steady ourselves as we took in the
sort of style that only Harry Seidler can render. Trevor took
us down to the old Liverpool Street Law Courts and explained
the markings on the wall outside, NOT a centenary celebration
but a careful indication that part of the wall is new, not
simply a repair of the old, a distinction that might otherwise
be lost to the casual observer. He also explained why the
building seems to be hiding; originally there was to be a
grand vista whereby the court building would dominate the
whole block, but alas, as often happens, money got in the
The formal part of the walk ended with our arrival outside
the original Sydney Water Board building, with a thorough
explanation of the meaning and history of the magnificent
Art Deco entrance and façade. Basically an Ancient
Greek poet was chosen to rally the troops and remind the workers
of the importance of getting the clean water through…
Following the walk, a good time was had by all feasting on
yum cha in local Chinatown. All in all a wonderfully enjoyable
and educational day.
A walk booklet containing more detailed information can be
obtained from the Society.