Jun 04 2011Seven Miles from Sydney and a Thousand Miles from Care
Seven Miles from Sydney and a Thousand Miles from Care..
Captain Arthur Phillip visited the northern reaches of Port Jackson on January 21st, 1788. He was looking for the best place for a new settlement, having rejected Botany Bay.
He came across a group of aboringines, and “their confidence and manly behaviour made me give the name of Manly Cove to this place”.
A monument marks the site
Phillip may not remember Manly fondly. In 1790, on another visit, Phillip was speared in the shoulder by one of these ‘manly’ aborigines.
From the early 1820s settlement began in Manly Cove. Small boats was the only practical way of getting there – it was a few days overland from the settlement in Sydney Cove.
In the 1850s, Henry Gilbert Smith, an English businessman living in Sydney, saw that Manly – with an ocean beach on one side and fine sandy cove on the other – could provide a great “watering place” for the people of Sydney, as Brighton did for Londoners.
He arranged for Norfolk Island pines to be planted along the harbour foreshore and constructed a pier, near where Manly Wharf is now. The Pier Hotel was built and The Corso was cleared linking the harbour with the ocean beach.
Smith encouraged the growth of a ferry service to Manly. Excursion trips were available and by 1856 there was a daily ferry service. In 1859 Smith acquired the steamer “Phantom” specifically for the Manly to Sydney run.
In 1873, Smith sold his ferry service and the pier to the Port Jackson and Manly Steamship Company, who ran both for the next 99 years. They sold to Sydney Ferries in 1972.
It was the Port Jackson and Manly Steamship Company that coined the phrase ‘Seven Miles from Sydney and a Thousand Miles from Care’. They build the Manly Fun Pier which I remember very well, since I grew up in Manly.
They’re still aren’t many better places than watching the yachts on a sunny day in Manly Cove. Today we had lunch at the Manly 16″ Skiff Club. Visitors welcome. Turn right after you get off the ferry, and follow the cove to the east about 200 metres. (its on the map above)
It was a great spot and a great feed – fish and chips, of course.
Go the Sea Eagles!