North Shore Historical Society

Date : 
11 March 2021 
Council Event
Cost: Annual fee

Event Details

Monthly Meetings

North Sydney Historical Society are pleased to be able to recommence monthly meetings in Stanton Library, with the return of a featured guest speaker and at an earlier time. Numbers however are limited and COVID-safe protocols are in place.


March Guest Speaker: Bill Phippen OAM

Bill Phippen graduated in Civil Engineering from the University of Sydney in 1976 and spent most of his working life as a licensed builder. In 1981 he joined the Australian Railway Historical Society, NSW Division and volunteered his building skills to the Society at their premises in Redfern, Central and Alexandria . He was also guide for their St James Tunnel Tours until they had to be abandoned after 9/11. When the paid position of Manager of the Railway Resource Centre within the Australian Railway Historical Society became vacant in 2010 the job was offered to Bill. He formally retired as manager of the Railway Resource Centre at Christmas 2017, though he remains heavily involved with the Australian Railway Historical Society as a volunteer


March Topic: By Muscle of Man and Horse

The core of the Sydney City Railway was built between 1916 and 1932 by John Bradfield. He ensured that the work was well recorded by photography, much of which is well known. However, images of certain aspects of the work were missing until a chance discovery of a large album during a clean-up by Sydney Trains. Offered to Bill for assessment as to its significance, the album led to the rest of the series at NSW State Archives and the assembly of a definitive set of photos of the work. These have been published as a large book, compiled by Bill, by the Australian Railway Historical Society NSW Division. The great insights of seeing all the photos together for the first time is the heavy reliance on manual labour to achieve the enormous earth moving task and the dislocation of the city, especially its parklands, for a decade and a half.


Due to COVID-19 and Stanton Library requirements, please note the following:

  • Meeting numbers are limited to 30 attendees, but there is no need to pre-register as numbers are manageable at the present time.

  • Doors will open to NSHS members before the meeting at 5.45pm and will close once the meeting commences at 6pm.

  • Pre-meeting refreshments will be unable to be offered on this occasion.

  • You are required to sign into the NSW Government COVID app on entry for contact tracing purposes.

  • Library staff will be available to sign in those without a smart phone.

  • Face masks must be worn at all times when in the library.
  • The meeting will conclude no later than 7.45pm.

Please check the latest Society Bulletin (655KB) for further details or keep in touch below:


President 02 9929 6637, Secretary 0414 416 802  

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About the North Shore Historical Society

The Society, founded in 1958, aims to promote both public knowledge of and research into local history, including the way in which the histories of the City of Sydney and the NSW State have impacted on the development of the North Shore.

The Society accomplishes its objectives through regular monthly meetings, visits to historical sites, and walks exploring regional history. It also financially supports History Prizes for local school students.

The Society assists Council in many matters including the provision of plaques at historical sites.

The Society's archives and research files are available in the Heritage Centre (Stanton Library), plus advice and support can be sourced from others with particular interests or expertise.


How to Become a Member

Membership is open to everyone with an interest in regional history. Membership offers you the opportunity to meet other people with similar interests, to attend meetings with informative guest speakers, to attend outings to places of historical interest, and to receive our monthly Newsletter with details of meetings, speakers and other relevant historical matters.

The membership fee is $15 per person, per annum. If you would like to join, please download:

NSHS application for Membership form (349KB) 

complete and post it with your cheque, or bring it along to one of the monthly meetings!


11 Mar 2021 at 06:00 PM - 07:45 PM
08 Apr 2021 at 06:00 PM - 07:45 PM
13 May 2021 at 06:00 PM - 07:45 PM
10 Jun 2021 at 06:00 PM - 07:45 PM
08 Jul 2021 at 06:00 PM - 07:45 PM
12 Aug 2021 at 06:00 PM - 07:45 PM
09 Sep 2021 at 06:00 PM - 07:45 PM
14 Oct 2021 at 06:00 PM - 07:45 PM
11 Nov 2021 at 06:00 PM - 07:45 PM


234 Miller Street
North Sydney
New South Wales 2060


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