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History of the Parklands

The story of Centennial Parklands is – in part – the story of Sydney, indeed Australia.

From a swampy uninviting beginning, the Park we know today was borne of a vision to create a grand park. This vision, once realised, then led to the daily struggle to survive through drought, environmental degradation, and the strains of surviving a modern urban environment.

The story involves extraordinary characters, bold and challenging thinking, leaders who pushed through adversity to succeed or despaired as a result of drought and failure.

Once referred to as one of the most 'highly politicised patches of grass in the country', Centennial Parklands is a much-loved and vibrant part of Sydney – having provided generations of Australians with a space to play, relax or be entertained.

Further reading

Above is just a brief snapshot of the Parklands' history - a condensed version of over 120 years work and toil. For more information on the Parklands, contact the Centennial Park and Moore Park Trust on (02) 9339 6699 or info@centennialparklands.com.au.

For the serious researcher, the book Centennial Park - A History (1988) by Paul Ashton and Kate Blackmore (UNSW Press) provides detailed information on the historical context and creation of the Parklands.

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