The practice in the mid-1800's in various parts of the Park Lands was to mine stones, or rubble from various pits – called “Blinding pits”.
In country areas, local governments still do this today. They call them “rubble pits”. and they take rubble for road building from private land, with the consent of farmers who are glad to get rid of the rubble.
However, in the Park Lands, in the 1800's, the practice just left large holes scattered around. The holes were then turned into rubbish dumps. This was going on up until at least the 1880's if not later. Park 24 was affected more than others because this Park had a Council works depot which made it a handy site for extracting rubble.
In 1918, the Council set up a “blinding pit” and works depot or yard on a Part of Park 24 that was not visible from West Terrace. They picked a spot that is now here, in the middle of a soccer field off West Tce opposite the city block between Waymouth and Franklin St.
The depot and blinding pit were hidden from view because of the “signals station” or telegraph station that fronted West Terrace, and also because it was hidden behind a hedge.
The City Gardener of the day, August Pelzer was keen on kei apple hedges. There are several still existing in the Park Lands. They produce a sour yellow fruit, about the size of apricots. In 1918 Mr Pelzer arranged to have planted 140 kei apple trees to form a hedge around this works depot. The hedge gradually grew over and obscured the tall jarrah wooden and barbed wire fence around the Depot.
It appears that the depot lasted less than 20 years because an aerial photo of 1936 shows that it had gone and been replaced by a new works depot off what was then called “Hilton Rd” - what we now call Sir Donald Bradman Drive.
Now both of the depots have been removed.
From this point, walk diagonally, south-west across the sporting field to the next stop alongside Sir Donald Bradman Drive. Stop where you can see a collection of what look like small stone huts.