02 March 2013

Customs House, Circular Quay, Sydney

Customs House is situated directly opposite Sydney harbour, and on Thursday last, after tripping down to the city, just a short distance across the road from Circular Quay station, there stands Customs House.

On the site where the local Eora people watched the First Fleet land and raise the British flag in 1788, Customs House from 1844, stands. The Aboriginal flag is flown permanently in recognition of the dramatic changes this bought about to the traditional indigenous owners of the land.

According to signage inside, Customs House served as the control centre for all customs activities in N.S.W. for 145 years. 

With marigolds and petunias and eating places outdoors
 
Sydney airport and Botany Bay eventually became preferred point of entry for goods and people, and by 1990, more space was needed and new premises eventuated.
 
In 1993, the Federal Government leased Customs House to the City of Sydney for a period of 60 years.

a beautiful entry decorated with potted cumquat trees
 
and a glass floor 

you can just make out - with reflections of the overhead structural steels, the city of Sydney in miniature, as it stands today.  To the right of this photo are the ferry terminus' at Circular Quay, and the larger ship denoting one of the international cruise ships docked in.

I've marked the arrow to the yellow building being Customs House.  You can see its proximity to the quay.

An amazing place, with beautiful spaces for quiet time to read any newspaper of the day, or access the internet.  A lovely library upstairs and a prestigious restaurant facility also.  There were currently two photographic art exhibitions.

It had been a grey day with showers possible.  They held out till the last half hour before leaving.  Then it was time to get back the few rail stops to Central, to then board the country train homeward bound (almost two hours).  It started raining over the last hour of that journey and pretty much hasn't stopped since.

5 comments:

Brian King said...

That's a fantastic building! The very first thing I noticed was the clock. I love that!

Sinbad and I on the Loose said...

I overlooked "in miniature" when I first read it and for the life of me I could not figure out how one could view the entire city through a glass floor. I then re-read it and...whew! I can sleep now.

Sharyl said...

Ha, Sinbad! :-D It is beautiful, Carole! And I feel warmed up after seeing the beautiful green growing things in the photos too! We've got a couple feet of snow here, and I'm longing for Spring!

Linley S said...

Beautiful pics Carole, a must see for when I finally get to Sydney again.

TexWisGirl said...

yeah, the glass floor was a little funky to me. pretty building. i can imagine the sweeping changes that occurred once the british arrived...