Love history? Check out Liverpool Pioneers' Memorial Park.
Liverpool has a curious attraction - a cemetery sitting in the shadows of its Westfield shopping centre.
The park is virtually at Westfield's doorstep
When you take a closer look, you realise that this is a monument to the pioneers who built Liverpool.
Liverpool is a vibrant, multicultural city located in Sydney’s south west. It celebrated its 200th anniversary on the 7 November 2010. It is growing rapidly, and is an important economic hub in Sydney’s western suburbs.
Liverpool was founded by a large band of early settlers who established the suburb as an agricultural area.
Lots of gravestones from the early 1800s
In homage to those pioneers; the cemetery where many are buried is preserved, and remains a monument to their dedication, hard work and belief in the area.
The park was originally St Luke’s Cemetery. Apparently it became somewhat neglected and overgrown, and therefore in the 1950s, the local Apex Club was granted permission to restore and beautify the cemetery.
Several stages of development have since been made, notably in the 1970s when it went from simply a cemetery and became a park.
The local council now maintains the park, keeping it clean and inviting.
This is history you can walk amidst
The park remains of historical importance, and is a testament to the area for maintaining this important piece of Australian history.
Don't confuse the parking meters with the gravestones
You can walk among the many gravestones and read the inscriptions dating as far back as the early 1800s. Some are so old that the inscriptions have eroded.
Interestingly, many cultures are represented among those buried there, including Italians, Germans and of course the English and Irish.
It’s always a sobering feeling to walk among graves, as we are reminded of our own mortality. It’s even more so when you realise these graves are up to 160 years old.
The memorial building in the centre of the park
In the centre of the park is the memorial building that appears to have been built many years ago; but it is actually relatively new, and simply designed in a colonial style.
There is also a children’s play area.
Sadly, vandalism and littering remains a problem. While I was there, I also saw at least one homeless person using the park for refuge. But these are broader community problems, and hardly isolated to Pioneers’ Park.
Liverpool Pioneers’ Memorial Park is located right near Westfield shopping centre on Campbell Street.
Where: Campbell Street, Liverpool.
Why: Historical significance
When: Never closed, but wise to avoid at night.
Good for kids: Older kids can appreciate the history, while younger kids can enjoy the play area.