Then and Now: Port Pirie

Then and Now: Port Pirie


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Take a trip into Port Pirie's past with our interactive photo gallery.

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Have a look back at how Port Pirie has transformed throughout the decades with this trip down memory lane, thanks to photos provided by well-known local historian and columnist Des Parker.

Do you have special memories of Port Pirie? Share them in the comment box towards the bottom of the page.

Hover your mouse over each image to take a trip into Port Pirie's past.

Port Pirie smelter: 1960s and now

The smelter, as it stands today, is operated by Belgian company Nyrstar. Pictured in the 1960s, BHAS employees leave work. The notable difference between the two images is Port Pirie's well-known stack, which wasn't commissioned until 1979.

The Recorder: 1979 and now

In April this year, The Recorder and The Flinders News moved to their new home at 10 Mary Elie Street. In 1979, the building was home the Whyalla Credit Union.

Solomontown Beach: 1966 and now

Today, Solomontown Beach is still a popular Port Pirie destination in summer and is home to the local Australia Day celebrations. Pictured in 1966, the beach wasn't just sand. The beach was home to a playground on the sand, change rooms and a stage.

Solomontown Primary School: 1960s and now

Very little has changed with Solomontown Primary School's main building, but look around the rest of the campus and the school has grown considerably. Pictured in the 1960s, you can see the building, which opened in 1897, has barely changed.

Ellen Street shops: 1970s and now

While some of the buildings look the same here in 2013, their tenants in the 1970s were much different. Prests Department have since downsized. Coles moved to the Pirie Plaza in the 1980s. This building is now Homeflair. The Family Hotel still remains, under different ownership today.

Looking south down Ellen Street: 1970s and now

Port Pirie's city centre is still bustling, just like it was in the 1970s. The Exchange Hotel, built in 1878, became the Jubilee Hotel and is now the Portside Tavern.

Looking north down Ellen Street: 1960s and now

Today, the eastern side of Ellen Street looks completely different to what it looked like in the 1960s. The median strip on the road today, covers the area that once was railway tracks, which ended at the railway station. The shops and the Barrier Hotel in the photo, which was taken in the 1960s were mostly demolished. Today, this part of the city centre is home to the modern Port Pirie Regional Council Offices. The town hall, pictured just behind Barrier Hotel was demolished and was once home to Centrelink. The only building in the old photograph still standing are the railway station, which is now a museum, the post office and the old public library.

John Pirie Secondary School: 1915 and now

To the younger people in Port Pirie, they know John Pirie Secondary School as the city’s public high school. This site has been home to a high since 1910, but until 1995 it was known as Port Pirie High School. The older photograph of the school shows the original building in 1915. Today, the school has been transformed and part of the old building has been demolished to make way for a multi-million-dollar front office, expected to be completed in 2014.

Take a trip into Port Pirie's past with our interactive photo gallery.

Take a trip into Port Pirie's past with our interactive photo gallery.

The story Then and Now: Port Pirie first appeared on The Recorder.

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