Promote awareness and the preservation of Middle Park history.
Involve and encourage the Middle Park community to actively participate in historical research.
Seek from the community oral histories, photographs and moving images, documents and artefacts relevant to Middle Park history.
Encourage research by government, educational institutions and others that can illuminate Middle Park history and culture.
Seek resources, both financially and in-kind to enhance the work of the Group.
Most of us who live in Middle Park realise how lucky we are to live in this suburb bounded by sea and park, with its wide, shady streets, varied and distinctive architecture, community-minded residents and ample amenities. It’s also our good fortune that living among us there’s a dedicated band of amateur and professional historians and writers, the Middle Park History Group, who devote countless hours to researching, investigating and writing books about this place where we live.
The first book – The Heart of Middle Park – was designed to take readers on ‘a voyage of discovery of iconic places, people and milestones in the life of an Edwardian suburb by the sea.’ Appropriately, it was sub-titled: Stories from a suburb by the sea. It was well-received and a second project was soon underway. The second book – Middle Park: From Swamp to Suburb – was a more ambitious production, 210 pages of text and illustrations, double the size of the first book. It explains how a low, swampy area developed into a pleasant and comfortable suburb with its attractive mix of Victorian, Edwardian and modern architecture.
Now, five years after the first publication, the Middle Park History Group’s Trilogy of local history is accomplished. Book Three – Middle Park: The Way We Were – introduces the reader to daily life as it used to be in our suburb: our early shops and the way we shopped in them, decades and even a century, ago; the role that the beach and bowling club played in our social development; the way the suburb was laid out and developed from the beginning; the disappearances of the milkman and his horse and cart, and a bit later, all the large and small industries that once dotted our suburb. It tells too the stories of some of the young men who went to the Great War and didn’t come back, and invites some of our Greek neighbours to tell their own stories of how they left their homeland and came here as migrants in the 1960s and 70s. Lastly, we hear some tales of the darker side of Middle Park, of robbery, mystery and murder.
A common purpose links all three publications of the intriguing history of Middle Park: to know the past and share our common heritage so that we can understand the present and help build a better future.
For more information and purchase options see Publications page.