The Bow of HMAS Sydney is the central feature in Bradfield Park, parkland which slopes down to the water on the Northern Shore, leading down to the Harbour Bridge. The bow pierces the roughcast concrete balustrade along the sea wall. The park, named after John Bradfield (1867-1943), the chief engineer for the bridge, was landscaped in 1932 after the bridge opened. Previously the land had belonged to Robert Ryan, Robert Campbell (1804-59), and then in 1846, George Campbell. The urban settlement there was removed to make way for the park, which has mature trees, scattered seats and picnic tables. There is also an Australian GPO pillar, which used to stand in Martin Place. It was moved here in 1988.
HMAS Sydney was a famous World War I Chatham-class light cruiser which sunk the German cruiser, SMS Emden, at the Battle of Cocos in 1914. Sydney was laid down in 1911, launched in 1912 and was operational until decommissioned in 1928. The bow was donated by the Royal Australian Historical Society and mounted here in 1941.
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