Events > Pyrmont Regattas
Water sports were popular in Pyrmont, with sailing and rowing regattas held as early as 1847. The 1848 regatta, honouring Queen Victoria’s birthday, featured eight races, with significant prize money. As the event evolved, some spectators observed from a decorated flagship, while booths on shore sold food and drink.
In 1858, 2,000 spectators on Pyrmont Bridge cheered the competitors in a dozen races. In 1870 the North German barque Bonito served as flagship, “extensively dressed with colours and evergreens, and other arrangements for visitors.” 300 people on board watched 11 races. Ten years later the Pacific Mail steamer Australia was the flagship.
From the 1860s Balmain became a serious rival, and during the 1880s Pyrmont’s events declined in popularity as other venues emerged and public transport improved. Industrialisation and shipping made Pyrmont less attractive for spectators and competitors.