Flo Seckold

Flo Seckold was born in 1933 and lived all her life around Millers Point and The Rocks. In her interview she recalls the various houses in which she lived with her parents and children; her father’s work; religion and Sunday school; death of her father and brothers; organised playground activities; World War II; entertainment; and different renting arrangements with administrative changes to the area. In the excerpt below she recalls the Maritime Services Board house she and her family lived in in Cumberland Street.

This interview is part of Housing NSW’s 2005 Millers Point Oral History Project. The City of Sydney acknowledges the State Library of New South Wales as the archival custodian of the project and digital preserver of the masters.

How many layers of lino on the floor? About seven or eight, and about three pound of nails and tacks. They were nice big rooms, big ceilings, a staircase up seven or eight stairs to a landing, and then went left and right to the bathroom and back bedroom, which my son had. We went right to my daughter’s bedroom and our balcony bedroom. Then downstairs when you walked in it was a hall, off to the left was the lounge room, you walked into the dining room and then out into the kitchen, which were all good sized rooms. The kitchen had a tiny little sink, probably about sixteen inches, with a board about as wide as what the sink was and you washed up there. There was fuel stove hanging out of where it should have been sitting in properly, and the first night we were there we cooked our meal on a fireside heater. There was an old chip heater up there that when lit would blow you out the door. Dangerous! We didn’t move upstairs straight away because there was only my son, we had the front room downstairs. There had been painted calcimine in the staircase and every time there was a gust of wind or a door slammed it was like a bride walked up there with confetti.

Gee, what a job we had doing that place up. In the middle room there was wallpaper hanging like curtains, it had all come away from the walls. We loved that house up there and we walked out into the yard and we had the laundry and we had the toilet out there, but the beauty was the bath upstairs, that wasn’t out in the yard. We loved that house, we had a lot of good memories up there, twenty-nine years of them.

Frank Heimans