(Image taken in October 2001. Author’s own collection.)
The first ocean pool south of Sydney Harbour, this modified tidal rock pool borders the North Bondi Children’s Baths. Near a popular rock fishing spot.
Ramsgate Avenue, Bondi, NSW, 2026, Australia
(Latitude South 33 degrees 53 minutes 29 seconds, Longitude East 151 degrees 16 minutes 57 seconds)
Bondi was the home, fishing and swimming place for the Cadigal people. Aboriginal rock carvings at the Bondi Golf Course, Ben Buckler Reserve and the coastal walk at Mackenzie’s Point are protected by State legislation.
The Bondi Ocean outfalls sewage system was completed with an ocean outfall at the northern headland known as Ben Buckler.
The Australian Museum first collected stone tools shaped like a scalpel or penknife blade and made thousands of years earlier from the northern end of the beach. Some of these tools, along with other stone implements and artefacts (grindstone, nose ornaments, scrapers, spear points, etc.) and the remnants of an Aboriginal midden containing shellfish debris are now buried under Bondi’s Queen Elizabeth Drive.
Early 20th century
Although Sydney’s Bondi Beach is only a kilometre long, the Bondi and North Bondi communities developed their own surf clubs and ocean pools.
The earliest version of this pool was a swimming spot created by residents. The pool was later formalised and named after Wally Weekes, a publican, boxer and patron of the North Bondi surf club.
In February, surf pollution at Bondi was 1,000 times above the acceptable level.
Extension of the Bondi Ocean outfalls system reduced surf pollution.
Waverley Council commissioned an investigation report on the North Bondi Children’s Pool from the NSW Department of Public Services. The report recommended construction of a new intake line through the Wally Weekes Bathing Pool and the existing rock shelf.
Both the North Bondi Children’s Pool and the Wally Weekes Bathing Pool lay within the tidal area covered by a native title claim, which inhibited any expansion of these structures.
Waverley Council commissioned a further report on the North Bondi Children’s Pool and a review of the Wally Weekes Pool from Patterson Britton & Partners Pty Ltd, an engineering firm with considerable experience and expertise in the design and upgrading of ocean pools. That report made few recommendations for the Wally Weekes Pool, but did recommend that Council add a handrail at the ramp entry to the pool and continue to leave the discharge valve open to allow the pool to operate fully as a tidal pool. The pool’s water quality was considered satisfactory.
Waverley Council approved a tender for upgrading of the Wally Weekes Bathing Pool and the North Bondi Children’s Pool, subject to confirmation of available funding.