Author(s): MIDDLE PARK HISTORY GROUP & EIDELSON MEYER
The Heart of Middle Park is the first in the historical series published by the MPHG. Its stories mainly centre around the central village of the Armstrong Street shopping centre. At one end of the street was the former Middle Park railway station and now a light rail stop, and at the other end on the foreshore was the former Middle Park Baths which fell into disrepair and was demolished in 1961.
In Armstrong Street there is the Middle Park Hotel, still surviving since its construction in 1889; the Middle Park Theatre which for a time was known as the Arrow Theatre and where Frank Thring was actor/manager; and Esmonde’s Bakery on the island between Erskine Street and Canterbury Place. Armstrong Street was also famous for the annual Old Buffers Carnival and associated football match.
Around the corner in Canterbury Road was Sam Brown’s shoe shop, a long-standing family business well known in the area. And in nearby Neville Street was Honeybone’s hat factory, a thriving business during the times when hats were fashionable. Finally, no community is without its churches as the story of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church tells. A history trail and a chronology of Middle Park completes the book.