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Hostels were used to accommodate new Australians. 1950's-1970's
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Brian Stuart
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2012 9:05 am    Post subject: EAST HILLS HOSTEL 1950-53 Reply with quote

My family [the Stuarts, Fred and Marion, Brian and Patricia] came to the East Hills Hostel around 1950. We arrived on the Ranchi from Britain on my 5th birthday. We spent about 3 years on the Hostel, and lived in the row of silver-painted nissan huts closest to the Williams Creek, and got flooded out with two king tides around Christmas time. My sister and I attended Hammondville Public school while at the hostel. To make a few pounds, my mother cleaned toilets and folded linen. We used to swim in the Williams Creek, and even built tin canoes from old corrugated iron. Nail holes were plugged with hot tar off the roads. Each year, we celebrated Guy Fawks cracker night with a big bonfire down behind the huts near Williams Creek. I remember the old house near the hostel and the run-down orchard, and a pair of old horses in the paddock which we rode bareback. In those days, the footbridge across to East Hills was of wooden structure. It was later replaced with a steel sructure, following a flooding of the Georges River. My happiest days were spent here. I recall a poor woman died of blood poisoning after she got a splinter in her hand while ironing on an old ironing board. While there, I joined the Cubs, but having come in late, I was well behind the other lads with knot tying. I recall Kath and John State were friends of my parents, and a lad by the name of Douglas. We eventually built a home at Panania not 5kms from the old hostel. The last time I visited the place, there were Vietnam refugees living there, and all the old huts were gone, and just the concrete slabs were left to remind me of those earlier days.
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