Parramatta Road, 1982

Further to the recent F4 update (to the article, not to the actual road, what were you thinking? that’s just laughable), here’s another snippet from the same pamphlet giving us a rundown of the history of “the oldest road in Australia”, Parramatta Road, as seen from the vantage point of 1982.

For me, the highlights (emphasis mine) include:

“By 1806 the road was in such poor condition it was declared to be a danger to horses.”

Right, and by 2015, those horses still aren’t getting anywhere near it.

“For those evading the tolls penalties were severe, up to 3 years hard labour and public whipping!”

Any chance we could bring that back?

“The first Judge of the Supreme Court, Jeffrey Bent, was fined 40 shillings and recalled to England after repeatedly refusing to pay the toll and threatening to jail the tollkeeper.”

He was a judge, so no hard labour there of course, but where was his public whipping?

“In 1925…the section from Ashfield to Parramatta was noted as being far too narrow for the traffic using it.”

No need to update those notes, then.

“With the road physically incapable of being widened without enormous cost and commercial upheaval…”

Exactly what commercial upheaval are you worried about?

There’s plenty more good stuff in here, so have a gander, perhaps when you’re sitting around for long stretches of time, not going anywhere, maybe in the late afternoon. You know, one of those times.

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Thanks to Burwood Library for the pamphlet.

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