Hyde Park, Sydney

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Hyde Park, the oldest public parkland in Australia, is a 16.2-hectare (40-acre) park in the central business district of Sydney, New South Wales. Hyde Park is on the eastern side of the Sydney city centre. It is the southernmost of a chain of parkland that extends north to the shore of Sydney Harbour via The Domain and Sydney's Royal Botanic Gardens.

Hyde Park, Sydney, Australia
Hyde Park, Sydney, Australia

Hyde Park is approximately rectangular in shape, being squared at the southern end and rounded at the northern end. It is bordered on the west by Elizabeth Street, on the east by College Street, on the north by St. James Road and Prince Albert Road and on the south by Liverpool Street.

Hyde Park, Sydney, Australia
Hyde Park, Sydney, Australia

Around the park's boundaries lie the Supreme Court of New South Wales, St. James Church, Hyde Park Barracks and Sydney Hospital to the north, St Mary's Cathedral, the Australian Museum and Sydney Grammar School to the east, the Downing Centre to the south, the David Jones Limited flagship store and the CBD to the west. It is divided in two by the east-west running Park Street.

Hyde Park, Sydney, Australia
Hyde Park, Sydney, Australia

Hyde Park was named after the original Hyde Park in London. The park is pock marked with drain lids, many of which lead down to Busby's Bore, the first large-scale attempt at a water source system after backing-up the Tank Stream, the Sydney colony's primary water source. Busby's Bore was built between 1827 and 1837 using convict labour and fresh water from Lachlan Swamp to the city.

Hyde Park, Sydney, Australia
Hyde Park, Sydney, Australia

Many sports were played at Hyde Park, including cricket, rugby, horse racing, quoits and hurling; however, sports people using Hyde Park had to share it with both the military, who trained on it and practised drill work, the public, who cut paths across the playing fields, stray dogs, cattle, goats, sheep and other animals, as well as sports people, whose activities sometimes clashed. The quoit players, in particular, used an area close to the cricket pitch and often damaged it.

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