I’ve had these photos for a few months, so I was delighted to see this week’s challenge, to show the effect of time and the elements.
There are many weathered farm buildings around Tasmania, but these are my favourite so far.
On 5th January 1975 a ship hit Hobart’s Tasman bridge, bringing down two pylons and 72 meters of roadway. Tragically 12 people were killed, 7 crewmen and 5 motorists as cars plunged into the water.
Emergency services and local residents rushed to help. Montagu Bay was the main launch point for searchers, hence this memorial in this pretty bay.
The Eastern Shore was cut off from Hobart’s city centre. What had been a five-minute drive across the bridge became a ninety-minute journey. Ferries were soon transporting over thirty thousand people a day across the river to work, to school, to hospital, to the airport. A vehicle ferry was also in operation as priority to carry ambulances between the suburbs. Power lines, telephone lines and water pipes were also impacted and needed repair.
The “Lake Illawarra” ship is still on the river bed, causing the replacement pylon to have a different position and the new roadway to have a noticeably wider distance between pylons. The bridge was reopened in October 1997.
The Eastern Shore became more self-contained communities as a result of the disaster and a second bridge, Bowen Bridge, was built a few miles upstream, in 1984.
We visited the Hobart Synagogue today as part of Open House weekend. It is the oldest Jewish place of worship still in use in Australia, consecrated on 4th July 1845.
The building is in the Egyptian Revival style, characterised by its columns with lotus capitals and the trapezoidal shape windows.
We saw the central raised platform, the Bimah, where the Torah is placed for reading.
We saw the Ark, the sacred place behind a curtain, where the Torah scrolls are kept. Our guide explained that the practicality of winding the scroll from one place to another, one reading to another, can be time consuming, so they have five Torah in their Ark.
There is a Sefer Torah on display as a memorial of those who died in the Holocaust. It is one of 1,564 scrolls seized from desecrated synagogues in Czechoslovakia by the Nazis.
Hobart Synagogue embraces both Orthodox and Progressive members and offers services for both, but the building was obviously constructed at a time of Orthodox Judaism so there is a box for the Rabbi. The seating downstairs was for men only, with a balcony at the back for ladies and children.
It was built when Tasmania was known as Van Diemen’s Land and was still a convict settlement. Original benches where convicts sat, are still used for spare seating, some are stacked and used as book shelves.
The chandelier was originally designed to burn whale oil and has since been adapted for every variation of electric light technology. If you look closely from the Ladies Gallery, you can see that the light fittings hang below the ceiling level, allowing smoke from the oil burners and candles to escape into the ceiling space.
It was a privilege to see inside this synagogue, to hear about the history of the building, about the Jewish community in Tasmania and to learn more about the Jewish faith.
This weekend, various private buildings are open to the public. We visited the rooftop of the Colonial Mutual building in Hobart. Built in 1931 the roof has distinct hand painted coloured tiles, gargoyles and expansive views of our city and waterfront.
It was great to have temporary access to a building that we regularly walk past but usually only see from street level.
This week’s photo challenge is to share a Peek of something, photos to pique our interest. The theme is perfect, for today was the annual “open day” at our Government House in Hobart. We had a peek at the building and gardens that are usual closed to the public.
We peeked in windows, over walls, through trees to get views of the house and views from the house. Tickets to go inside were sold out, unfortunately. We’ll save that for another day.
It is the home and official residence of the Governor of Tasmania, built in the 1850’s, on land that overlooks the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens and the River Derwent. It was built from sandstone that was quarried on site (the excavated holes were made into ornamental pools). Cedar and teak were recycled from an old ship, slate for the roof was imported from Wales and furniture was imported from London.
Much of Tasmania’s heritage dates back to European settlement. These three bridges were all built by convict labour.
Built in 1823 it is the oldest bridge in use in Australia.
The Red Bridge, Campbell Town
Built in 1838, constructed of hand made red bricks. This bridge on the Midland Highway now carries two million vehicles each year.
Built in 1843, it is no longer in use, located a few meters from the East Coast Road.
But such a spectacular design. Some say the vertical stones were to prevent cattle falling over the side. Others claim it was convict rebellion against their supervisors.