Wednesday, March 11, 2009

East is east & west is west, but I reckon both sides of Maitland are BEST!

Located about 30klms away from Newcastle, nestled alongside the Hunter River, is the picturesque historical town of Maitland

Maitland is a river town & prior to motor vehicles & trains, the quickest way to 
get produce to Sydney was using the Hunter River via Morpeth & Newcastle. So Maitland quickly grew into a large transportation hub .

Actually there are two Maitlands, East Maitland & West Maitland (ok, 4 if you include Maitland, the area situated around the Courthouse & South Maitland, near the showgrounds!). East Maitland was the preserve of the rich, mainly because the town was built higher than its riverbank cousin to the west. As a consequence while most of the commerce was gathered around the riverbank, the toffs preferred to live where their feet would stay a tad dryer than the plebs who plied their trades around the wharves.

The architecture is absolutely stunning & this is exemplified by the Post Offices. Maitland PO (situated in Maitland West) is one of the few Australia Post properties whose soul hasn't been sold to become a restaurant or solicitors office, but still enjoys its original purpose, a functioning PO. However, East Maitland was sold off years ago & was replaced by a 'modern' soulless edifice in High St., which I suppose is better than the current fashion of putting LPO's in shopping centres.

Where Flag Now Doesn't Fly

There is a building down by the railway track,
Where eyes no longer pry,
It's now a private residence,
Where the flag now doesn't fly.

There is a building down in main street,
Where the solicitors now all lie,
It's now a place of commerce,
Where the flag now doesn't fly.

There is a building in the middle of town,
Where the food comes from a
 deep fry,
It's now downmarket restaurant,
Where the flag now doesn't fly.

There are a  still a few buildings left,
& I hope that they never die,
They are the local Post Office,
Where our Australian flag 
... still continues to fly. 

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