Little Bay
© Copyright Mike Fernandes 2013
Little Bay Little Bay Little Bay Little Bay Little Bay Little Bay Little Bay Little Bay Little Bay Little Bay
Little Bay has an extensive coastline located on the south east of Randwick City and is bounded by Malabar to the north, Chifley and Phillip Bay to the west, and La Perouse to the south. The suburb includes the University of New South Wales’ Little Bay Campus, The Coast, St Michael’s and Randwick, Golf Courses, and the The Coast Hospital site which has been developed for housing, local shops, community facilities and open space. The suburb also includes the northern part of the Botany Bay National Park. A rock bathing pool known as Little Bay Rock Pool or Little Bay Baths was created from beach rocks at the southern end of the beach in the early 1900s to provide safe shark-free bathing for nurses resident nearby at the Coast Hospital. The pool is still partially intact. Rock fishing is very popular at Little Bay, but the sport is extremely dangerous with several deaths occurring each year. Prior to 1990 when the Malabar Deep Ocean Outfall commenced operation, Little Bay, was increasingly polluted by sewage. The water was brown and fat was deposited on the sand and rocks, making them slimy and smelly. Since the deep ocean outfall came into operation the beach became significantly cleaner within a very short space of time. Today, Little Bay is consistently one of the cleanest beaches in Sydney. History of Little Bay Archaeological studies of Aboriginal occupation in the area around Little Bay prior to the establishment of “The Coast” Hospital have uncovered a diverse collection of middens, open campsites, rock engravings and axe grinding grooves. George Bass, in his open whaleboat with a crew of six, anchored off Little Bay beach on the evening of 3 December 1797 at the commencement of his first major voyage of discovery in the waters of southern Australia. He referred to the bay in his journal as “Little Harbour”. During Sydney’s smallpox outbreak in 1881-82, a “tent city” was established as a makeshift camp to isolate sufferers of the disease. Further smallpox outbreaks and a typhoid epidemic convinced the government to build a permanent hospital here to treat infectious diseases. Little Bay was an ideal location because it was still close enough to Sydney yet isolated from the general population. During the bubonic plague in Sydney of 1900 the Coast Hospital, as it came to be known, was particularly valuable and then again when soldiers returning from Europe brought the influenza virus back in 1919. The Coast Hospital was named Prince Henry Hospital in 1934 in honour of the Duke of Gloucester. In 1959 teaching hospitals were established for the University of NSW and the University of Sydney at Little Bay. In 2001 hospital services were transferred to the Prince of Wales Hospital in Sydney and the hospital site was made available for residential use. Two landmarks still remain from the hospital days. One is the Coast Cemetery where two thousand people are thought to be buried. The cemetery was taken over by the National Parks and Wildlife Service of New South Wales when the Botany Bay National Park was created. Another landmark is the War Memorial Chapel, an interdenominatonal place of worship which overlooks Little Bay. It was destroyed by fire in October 1981, but was subsequently restored. Outside the chapel is a display of memorial plaques dedicated to former staff of the hospital.
Little Bay Back to Subjects Back to Subjects Little Bay Gallery Little Bay Gallery Coogee Beach Main Page Coogee Beach Main Page La Perouse Main Page La Perouse Main Page
Little Bay
Custom Search