City News

A sweet tribute to Rosebery’s history

Under a proposal two new parks will be names in tribute to the factory at Sweetacres. Photo: provided

By ALLISON HORE

The City of Sydney has put forward a proposal to name two areas of Rosebery after some of Australia’s favourite lollies.

Under the proposal, a new park and a green link located in Sweetacres will be named Allsorts Park and Honeykiss Park, two sweets created at the former James Stedman-Henderson Sweets factory.

Sweetacres was the name given to the 16 acre industrial estate owned by James Stedman Henderson Ltd which opened in Rosebery in 1918. The founder of the company, James Stedman, had been in the confectionery business since 1850. Together with his 6 sons, he built Australia’s largest confectionery import, manufacture and wholesale business.

The iconic Australian mintie was created in the Sweetacres facility in 1922. The factory is also the birthplace of other popular sweets including Jaffas in 1931 and Fantales in 1939.

In its heyday the site also provided for the 1000 plus mostly-female workers of the factory. Alongside the factory was a large canteen and social hall, sports and cricket grounds, a library, band and sports clubs. The business continued to operate onsite, producing all Australian products, until the 1960s when it changed hands. 

Lord Mayor Clover Moore said it is “fitting” for the names of the new parks to recognise the site’s industrial history. The area already has three streets named in tribute to its sweet history- Sweetacres Park, Sweet Street, Confectioners Way and Stedman Street.

“The proposed names of these parks will be a constant reminder of the origins of the Australian lollies that have endured for generations,” Ms. Moore said.

“The new park and link will enhance an important precinct in the Green Square area, attracting locals and drawing visitors to nearby cafes and restaurants.”

The landscape design for the 5,750 square metre park on Rothschild Avenue will also be fittingly sweets themed, inspired by the pink, yellow, orange, white and black layering of Licorice Allsorts. It will feature a new children’s playground, open space, paths and lighting

The new green link on Rosebery Avenue will be 4,200 square metres and will run along Stedman Street and Confectioners Way. It is proposed to be named after Henderson’s Honey Kisses, a discontinued sweet which was made from all Australian ingredients including sugarcane from Queensland and Honey from Camden. 

The proposed names will be open for community feedback for 28 days from late September. The City of Sydney is yet to finalise the design of the parks and community consultation on the designs will open later this year. 

Construction on the new green spaces is expected to begin in late 2021 and will take around a year to complete.

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