As part of History Week, hosted by the History Council NSW, the City of Parramatta Research and Collection Services team held an an open day – Pop goes Parramatta –  to collect your popular culture memories! Check out the details, and our Pinterest board showcasing the day, below:

Pop goes Parramatta, held as part of the 2017 History Council of NSW’s History Week, encouraged residents to bring along their memories, and small items of memorabilia, relating to everyday life in the area from 1950 onwards. Details were recorded by the City of Parramatta Research and Collections team for sharing and long-term preservation.

Interesting objects brought along included photographs, newspapers, toys, clothing, furnishings and sporting memorabilia – each item comprising a small piece of material evidence of a life lived, held close over the years by our local residents.

Parramatta residents sharing their memories at Pop goes Parramatta, Parramatta Town Hall, 9 September 2017. Source:  M. Goodman

The stories shared by attendees told of fun days spent at Parramatta Park – “we would have family picnics, catch tadpoles and frogs and hide in the caves” [Carla], visiting the local department stores – “Dad would take us to the beautiful old DJ’s building near the river for milkshakes” [Lisa], and supporting the local sporting clubs – “our family have been fans of the Eels for a long, long time” [George].

Also featured were memories of social evenings spent dancing – “in 1956 I met my wife, Josie, ballroom dancing at the Riv” [John], or catching a movie at one the many local cinemas – “you would always take a girl you wanted to impress to the Roxy” [Stephen].

The memories were, at times, framed within the sadness of recalling lost landscapes, departed loved ones and times long-passed. However, the layers of history and memory uncovered overwhelmingly revealed the strong sense of place felt by our residents and the resilience, creativity and connectivity present in our local communities.

The event formed part of the Research and Collection Services team’s commitment to engaging with and recording the stories of day-to-day life in Parramatta and our neighbourhoods. In the words of one visitor – “may Parramatta always remember the past, and never get too big for the everyday people” [Maryann].

View photos of the event on the Parramatta Goes Pop Pinterest board!

Do you have a popular culture story from Parramatta or one of our neighbourhoods you’d like to share? Contact the Research and Collection Services team via our Enquiries page!

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Do you have photos of the Rivoli? A childhood Eels scarf? An old Riverside Theatre ticket?

As part of History Week, hosted by the History Council NSW, the City of Parramatta Research and Collection Services team are holding an open day – Pop goes Parramatta –  to collect your popular culture memories!

Join us at the Parramatta Town Hall, on Friday 8 September, and bring along up to three small objects from 1950 onwards. We’ll photograph/scan your items, and you can tell us about them. We may take some items as donations. Please bring along photographs, concert tickets, supporter badges, fan-club newsletters and more.

We’ll be showing old photos and film footage, and there will be experts on hand to advise on how to identify, assess and care for your items.

If you have a story to share but are unable to attend on the day, please fill in the enquiry form on our website or phone 02 8839 3322 and you’ll hear back from us soon.

• Friday 8 September, 10am – 4pm
• Jubilee Hall, Parramatta Town Hall (fully accessible)
• Come and share your popular culture memories
• Free open day, with refreshments
• All welcome