City from the Air

This collection was taken for NBN Television.

They are watermarked only to indicate that these negatives are in our possession. Being for promotional purposes - whether commercial shoots or station marketing - they could appear in other collections (supplied or sold to agencies, etc.). Selected from a large collection of negatives of similar vantage, duplicates of those below, which is clearly NBN work, product of either the station photographer or taken by a news photographer in the NBN-owned helicopter. 

North east. Nobbys headland beside the harbour entrance. Stockton Bight stretches to Anna Bay above. This photo from 1963 includes long-gone landmarks:

The gallery below is of the iconic east end of the city. Most were taken in the 1980s, evidenced by the presence of Christchurch Cathedral's bell tower, added in 1979, and the absence of Queen's Wharf, constructed in 1988.

Beneath each image is a caption with a brief description. Comments are open at the foot of the page and additional information is welcomed.

Looking south west into the harbour with Nobby Lighthouse at center left.

Viewed south west. Nobbys headland, breakwater, and beach prominent. Two smokestacks, distant at top mid-right, belong to Eraring Power Station, situated at the western edge of Lake Macquarie.

Center right, former NSW State Dockyard at Dyke Point. During this period (1980s) it made a series of ferries, it's final output after construction of MV Selwyn Range in 1979.

City basin in wide-angle. Suburb of Cooks Hill in foreground. Lower right is Wolfe Street, which joins Reserve Road that runs across center bottom. Large structure at lower right is NBN Television in Mosbri Crescent, now demolished. Center far-right is Civic Park and Town Hall in the Civic Precinct. Grain storage silos at extreme right on the Wickham peninsula. Nesca Park at center left. Above it, center-left, is National Park and 'The Sportsground' oval. Large white building at mid-left is former Wool Store on Darby Street.

This wonderful series of photos - captured as the chopper drifted northwards - reveals the city at its zenith before gentrification and the apartments boom times arrived. The difference in exposure are due to my impatience with the vaguaries of an old Canon 9900 scanner.
The two prominent canyons are King Street (left) and Hunter Street (right).
Tyrrell House is at the bottom. Royal Newcastle Hospital at lower-left. Pacific Park (lower center) has consumed the eastern end of Hunter Street, where buses had a terminus, and where the most interesting little string of beachside shops once lived. Christchurch Cathedral (upper left) has gained its bell tower, while Wharf Road beside the harbour awaits its new role: entertaining the people who once laboured along it.

Another string of images (above and below) viewed south west, as the chopper moved onshore.
Lower left, the Ocean Baths captured empty, revealing the sandy floor and part of the rock shelf upon which it was built. The round pool contains, beneath that permanent sand, perhaps still (?), a map of the world in concrete, wherein little Throsby recalls paddling between continents in the late 1050s.

King Edward Park is top middle. Government buses occupy their prime real estate at Parnell Place. The beach is Newcastle Beach, and its adjunct, South Newcastle Beach, the two separated only by a rocky outcrop in the center. Note, however, that there is no "South Newcastle" suburb.

Sequence of three above as we move southward along the coast, past the beaches. Immediately above, at center is James Fletcher Hospital, formerly and colloquially known as "Watt Street where the loonies are locked up" less tolerant times. The iconic 'round house' that housed Shortland Clinic was at the southern border, now demolished.

This collection contained few excursions into the hinterland, but here's one of Goninans, with a train cutting through "Sunny Side" with supplies, or outgoing with manufactures. The site might become another residential zone, as announced in 2022, but the election of a Labor government in 2023 could change the decision (pending) - as I write this.

The roundhouse - formerly council's admin, in 2022 was sold for reinvention as a five star hotel.

City by night. Stockton Penisular center top. Stockton Bridge in distance.

Stockton, viewed north. Fullerton Cove top right. The beach is eroding where the peninsula thins, due to a century of starvation from the harbour's breakwaters that have sent material from harbour silt outflows deeper into the sea, and the arrested northward migration of sand along the coast, from beach to beach.
The Hunter River curves west (at left). And Walsh Island (center) connects to Kooragang Island, site of a future coal loader that will make the small city the world's highest capacity coal exporter.

A farewell. Looking towards the coast from the western side of Mount Sugarloaf with its two terrestrial television transmitter towers.

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