the ‘sham from A-Z

…a growing page with what to do and where to go when yer in the ‘sham! this page will also contain links to ‘sham businesses and websites, and photos and publicity related (no matter how vaguely) to our neighbourhood.
[email me with yer recommendations and info! –> shortleftleg[at] ]


Borsellino’s: see fruit
Bowling Club: home of the Big Bowl Bistro, the Petersham Bowling Club is no longer primarily about lawn bowls. Instead, it’s become a site of local resistance to the devouring of public space by property developers. It’s on the north side of the station, on Brighton Street.
Bread: Petersham is not so good for bread. There’s crusty Italian loaves at Charlie’s and Borsellino’s, and although good, they’re always white bread. It’s difficult to find really heavy nutritious stuff. However, there is one place. The Portuguese deli south of the Livingstone junction on New Canterbury, Elio’s, makes their own delicious heavy cornbread. Highly recommended…

Chicken Belt, The: famous for its Portuguese Charcoal Chicken, New Canterbury Road has become known as Sydney’s Chicken Belt. Sometimes in the late morning the street is overcast with the pall of cremated chicken particles. It’s the reason our garden is so fertile, I reckon…



Fruit: key places for fruit and vegies in the ‘sham include Borsellino’s up on Stanmore Road (“if you are happy tell your friends, if not, tell us!”); K.Jim’s, a cute little fruiterer on New Canterbury just down from the Chicken Belt, and 2u Organics, a home delivery service for organic stuff (phone 1800 252535).

Gambling: any of the ‘sham’s pubs offers poker machines if you are interested in losing some coinage. The Livingstone, in particular, is open until six in the morning. Be warned: the RSL has a sign which declares: “your chances of winning are generally no better than one in a million”…



Jelly Wrestling: Petersham’s Oxford Tavern is famous for its scantily clad ladies slithering about in jelly. It happens on a Wednesday night.




Natas: the amazing custard tarts served at Sweet Belem. I challenge you to find ’em better anywhere else in Australia (altho’ I’ve eaten so many I cannae eat ’em no more).

Op shops: there are two. One is near the corner of Stanmore Road on Crystal Street, and the other is west of Livingstone Road on New Canterbury.
Oxford Tavern: see Jelly Wrestling

Pub: Petersham boasts five pubs – The White Cockatoo (on Terminus Street), The Oxford Tavern (corner New Canterbury and Crystal), The Livingstone (corner Livingstone and New Canterbury), the Clarence (corner Parramatta and Crystal) and the Newington (between Borsellinos and the Video Ezy on Stanmore Road). You can also have a drink at the Bowling Club and the RSL.
Pumpkin: see Vegetables


Rollerskating: Once the Tuesday night place-to-be for disco tunes and musical-chairs-on-wheels (it was called “GaySkate”) the rink closed up a few years back due to public liability troubles. Cross your fingers that it won’t be converted to apartments. Lets hope for something more fun.


Tai Chi: every Monday night 6.30pm-8pm at the Bowling Club
Trains: The train line runs right through the middle of the ‘sham, effectively dividing it into north and south boroughs. The trains runs towards Bankstown, in the westerly direction, and Sydney, in the easterly. It’s an all-stops service with varying reliability…


Vegetables: During April and May, our pumpkins are coming to an end. These work well as a neighbourhood commodity. A pumpkin grows easily and makes a nice gift. We have brassicas coming up now – rocket, lettuce, celery, spinach (see also fruit).

Water Tower: The amazing icon perched on the highest point in the ‘sham. Jane and I got caught in there once picking mulberries. The friendly police man said better watch out cos we’re monitoring that place for terrorist activity. We politely retreated (complete with berries). They’ve since cut down the tree.
Wolfie: my canine companion from next door.


Yoga: yoga to go on Crystal Street is the place.


One thought on “the ‘sham from A-Z

  1. sisTeR jOan

    B is for Bowling Club
    J is for Jelly Wrestling at the Oxford Tav every Wednesday (for as long as I can remember)
    T is for Train station. I see it almost every day as I zap past on the express to Western Sydney.
    F is for fruit shop, the big one on Stanmore Road run by those fruity Italian fruit pushers


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