Ibot

Old Sydney town?

10 posts in this topic

Well hello,, i went past The aus reptial park and rememberd Old Sydney Town. I know why they closed it but what is going to happen to the site. I found this:

On Australia Day, 1975, the prime minister, Gough Whitlam, and 11,000 spectators travelled to Old Sydney Town for the grand opening of a living tribute to the nation's colonial past. The dusty streets, circa 1788-1810, bustled with tourists and filled with the cries of convicts being flogged, hanged and shot. Now the redcoat platoons have been reduced to just four officers, the replicas of historic buildings have withered and the loss-making town will close on Monday. It is the end of a venture begun by architect Frank Fox. He set up the theme park with the help of the Federal Government and the Bank of NSW. The Wran state government took over the federal investment shortly after the Fraser government took power at the end of 1975. The future of the site, at Somersby, near Gosford, is now in the hands of Richard Chiu, a Paris-based entrepreneur who operates theme parks in Indonesia, and hotels in Europe, the United States and the South Pacific under the auspices of Warwick Amusements. Paul Kiley, general manager of Old Sydney Town and Warwick's Australian representative, has denied rumours that the 121.4-hectare site will be redeveloped for housing. But he has some confidence the theme park will return in another form. "I am a little bit sad but I also have some reasonably high hopes for the place. I don't believe that the theme of Old Sydney Town is dead." Edgar Adams, who was secretary and financial controller of the theme park in the late 1970s, said the venture was always doomed. Even in the first five years the park's losses reached $600,000 a year, he said. Warwick leased the town in 1987 but could not reverse its fortunes. It was eventually sold in 2000 to Warwick for $2.6 million, despite the 1976 book value of the property, noted as $2.57 million. Another $210,000 was paid for "part recovery of outstanding rentals", according to that year's state budget estimates hearings. The town is said to have lost $1.4 million since then. It is also understood that marketing of Old Sydney Town was virtually non-existent and the maintenance minimal, one employee describing it as "purely cosmetic surgery". Mr Kiley rejected the claims, but said that maintaining exact replicas of colonial buildings, built of softwood or wattle-and-daub, was extremely difficult. "We have constant problems with dry rot and birds assisting us by removing the thatching ... it is a constant battle." Claims of inadequate marketing were a matter of opinion, he said. "We spent as much as we were able to afford ... hindsight is a marvellous thing." The former federal ALP member for Robertson, Barry Cohen, has called for an inquiry into the conditions of the lease and sale of the park, which he says were never met. Promises of an 18-hole golf course, an amusement park and a hotel were broken, he said. Horst Endrulat, of Central Coast Tourism, said he was disappointed Old Sydney Town's potential had been lost. "If they re-injected money and pep it up then it would be a proper tourist attraction like Sovereign Hill." Sovereign Hill, the gold-rush theme park at Ballarat, Victoria, had a record 600,000 visitors last financial year - despite the tourism slump that followed the September 11 terrorist attacks and the collapse of Ansett. Old Sydney Town's neighbour, the Australian Reptile Park, has also had a 20 per cent increase in visitors in the past year. The State Opposition spokesman for the Central Coast, Mike Gallacher, said he wanted revive the park by putting it back into state hands. "The biggest mistake they made was only catering for that one small piece of history - once you went there it wasn't going to be any different." But the Minister Assisting the Premier for the Central Coast, John Della Bosca, takes another view, warning that repeating past mistakes "is reckless and it lacks judgement". "If Mr Gallacher wants to be an entrepreneur running fun parks and picking themes, he should not do it with taxpayers' money," Mr Della Bosca said.
Copied from http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2003/01/24/1042911552312.html So i was wondering does anyone have any news or information? i would really like to see a new theme park built their.

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Ibot I think you have been directed to this before, but it doesn't hurt to have another read, especially after that disgraceful opening, http://www.roller-coaster.com.au/guidelines.php As for Old Sydney town I remember visiting the park years ago when I was in primary school and learning about Australian colonial history. From memory it was ok, but it was based on Australian history so was extremely limited as to what they could do. As for the future of the site, it may be feasible for another ride based theme park but may have some problems with the location, basically being in the middle of a bush fire during summer. Besides that it would grab the tourists heading north during holidays, and is close enough to Sydney to get the day tripping tourists, both domestic and international and if it went into partnership or adjoined the reptile park that would be even better. "The Bus is now leaving for Sydney Heads Pass, Western Australia"

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Firstly. Sorry to bring back such an old topic. But anyways. Secondly. I've been wondering. Any new news about this place? I was out that way a few weeks ago. I stopped by an tried to see over the fences and what not. From, as far as I could see. The place was extremely ran down. Weeds and grass all over-grown. Tree branches everywhere. So on, so forth. However, surprisingly, as far as I could see. Everything was sorta still intact. I'm hopefully, going to head back out that way soon over the next few months. I'll try and get some photos. Thirdly. Has anyone heard about anything that's happening to the land which Old Sydney Town did, and still currently occupy? Has it been sold off to an investor, anything? It's sad to see it just sit there and degrade like Wonderland Sydney did. And, Fourthly [haha, is that even a word?]. My ideas? I think it'd be great for something to reopen on the land. Maybe a small amusement park? The 'Central Coast' (where I live) really needs something. They could, some how link up with the Australian Reptile Park, and do a 2 day pass typed idea, and a cheaper option of accommodation somewhere in Gosford.

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well chaos, now the formula one thingo has gone up behind mcdonalds, thats cheap enough accomodation. i really hope that something happens there, itd be good form tourism.

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true but the central coast is one of the top tourist destinations in new south wales (apart from sydney of course).. i think a small amusement park would be perfect for there, because it wouldnt have to compete with luna park

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I went there in 83 & 99. My first comment was that not a thing had changed(of course). I love historical parks, as long as the street theatre is good. That's the only thing with old Sydney Town, on the second visit, most of the performers would have been toddlers on my first visit. I hadn't realised it was closed, doesn't surprise me. Soverign Hill is amazing to have kept their attraction current and fun. There's a lesson to be learnt by them.

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m y grandfather worked there for ages, firstly as a village drunk (lol) and then later as one of the managers or something. i went there lots and have some humorous memories. lets just say my grandad was arrogant haha.

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true but the central coast is one of the top tourist destinations in new south wales (apart from sydney of course).. i think a small amusement park would be perfect for there, because it wouldnt have to compete with luna park
What's there to compete with, imo luna park has gone from a cool place in the 80's to a crap hole in recent years. They shouldn't have removed the big dipper (aka cyclone). What were thinking when they built cafes and function centers instead of rides?

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