History: Looking Back, Sport

Looking Back history feature: Bulli’s sacred sporting turf

Scroll down for Bulli’s sacred sporting turf…


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Looking Back

Slacky Flat sporting complex at Bulli in the 1990s. Slacky Flat sporting complex at Bulli in the 1990s.


Thirroul Cricket team on Slacky Flat 1908. Thirroul Cricket team on Slacky Flat 1908.

ARGUABLY Woonona Bulli can boast of two sacred sporting grounds.

I know some may disagree, with Nicholson Park at Woonona, and the picturesque soccer grounds of Bulli Park also in contention, but Ball’s Paddock, Woonona, and Slacky Flat, Bulli with their long historical links, I believe win hands down.

Ball’s Paddock, the property of a pub, and Slacky Flat, owned by a mining company and later brought into public ownership, attracted large crowds for sporting fixtures during the early half of last century.

Chiefly the home to soccer, they have had both forms of rugby, cricket, boxing, wrestling, and greyhound racing on their fields.

Sporting fields have always figured high on priority public infrastructure for Bulli residents.

From the earliest days of settlement in the early 1860s, when a village…

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About Mick Roberts

A journalist, writer and historian, Mick Roberts specialises in Australian cultural history, particularly associated with the Australian hotel and liquor industry. Mick has had an interest in revealing the colourful story of Australian pubs and associated industries for over 30 years. He is working on a comprehensive history of the hotel and liquor industry in the Illawarra region of NSW. Besides writing a number of history books, Mick managed several community newspapers. He has been editor of the Wollongong Northern News, The Bulli Times, The Northern Times, The Northern Leader and The Local - all located in the Wollongong region. As a journalist he has worked for Rural Press, Cumberland (News Limited), the Sydney city newspaper, City News, and Torch Publications based in Canterbury Bankstown, NSW.


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