This photo reminds me of just how much vacant land there was around Henley Beach and Fulham when I was young. Just across from where Henley High School is now there was a paddock with a horse called, “Mercury” in it and I know Ricky rode it sometimes but it was a stallion and I don’t know if it ever went out of the paddock. I think it was owned by Mr Hughes who lived just opposite. When we lived at Henley Beach Dad kept a cow on the vacant land between Henley Beach Road and the Torrens outlet at West Beach.
Our cow or maybe even cows kept us supplied with milk, I know one cow was called, “Jessie” and this is a photo of Mike with her calf. When we moved to Fulham the cow was grazed in different areas around the few houses. One day Mike and I were sent to check on the cow, I think it might have been tethered, we had to make sure it had water and was OK. It was over near the old Weetunga “castle” and when we reached her we saw two legs sticking out of her rear end. Mike raced back home to get Dad and I stayed at the cow, fascinated. I found out afterwards Mike got whacked for letting me see such a thing!
In the photo you can also see the old Viaduct in the background, that was for the tram and sometimes when we were coming back from the cows the brave ones would duck under the track where the soil had been scraped away and sit hunched there when a tram went over. I also remember seeing pennies that had been run over by a tram but don’t think I would ever have wasted a penny that way! It used to cost tuppence to travel from the stop nearest Henley Beach school to the corner of Tapleys Hill Road and Henley Beach Road at Fulham.