The tiny suburb of Rodd Point is our featured local suburb this month, as we celebrate its parklands and proximity to Iron Cove. Here we share some of the natural charms and fun facts about this historic precinct.
Rodd Point is one of Sydney’s smallest suburbs, and is situated along Iron Cove, in the City of Canada Bay. Known for its parklands and walking tracks, it is a popular weekend picnic destination for families. Rodd Point has a population of 1295 people, with the average age of 41. It is very family oriented, with more than 77 per cent of residents in family households. Named for the Rodd family, prominent local identities, it includes land bought by Brent Clements Rodd (1809–1898) from the Five Dock Farm estate in 1836. Rodd had a large family of 12 children and many of the local streets are named after members of the family, including Brent, Brisbane, Burnell, Clements, Janet, Lenore, Rodd, Trevanion and Undine. Barnstaple Road takes its name from Barnstaple Manor, Rodd’s family home.
The Bay Run
One of Sydney’s most popular running and walking tracks, The Bay Run is a 7km walkway and cycleway around the edge of Iron Cove. With wonderful views (the track is never more than 20 metres from the water), you can power walk the circuit in about an hour. It is signposted with kilometre markers along the way, and is the site of a popular fun run in August, known as a lead-up to the City to Surf. Runners and walkers can start from any point along the route. A large part of the run – almost one third – runs alongside the waterside boundary of Rodd Point and many runners start and finish in the suburb.
Situated in the sheltered waters off Iron Cove, Rodd Island was originally used in the 19th century by scientists sent by Louis Pasteur to investigate a way of eradicating rabbits. The island now serves as a delightful recreational reserve belonging to the Sydney Harbour National Park. It’s a great picnic spot and boasts some of the best views west of the bridge. You need to book ahead and organise your own transport to the island, and National Parks will charge a landing fee. You can walk through the expansive gardens, gaze at the spectacular scenic harbour views, and explore the historic buildings, including a dance hall and two summer houses. In 1879, it became the first public recreation reserve in Sydney Harbour and it was also used as a US army training ground during World War II.
The largest of the parks that front on to The Bay Run, Timbrell Park is popular with local sporting clubs and is usually packed with young families playing sports all weekend, including soccer. It also includes cricket nets and tree-covered walkways. In addition, it’s also home to the award-winning Livvi’s Place, an all-abilities playground purposely designed and built to cater for all ages and abilities, making it the first of its kind in Australia. The park includes undercover seating areas and barbecue facilities.
As a tiny suburb, Rodd Point has become a tucked-away gem of a location, with properties often highly sought-after because of the small turnover. Many houses also have expansive views of Iron Cove.
Dobroyd Aquatic Club
This traditional sailing club has a long and proud history dating back to 1937. Adults and children alike can learn to sail at the club on different crafts, or on windsurfers. Because Iron Cove has no public launching ramps, the area is a safe and pleasant venue for skiffs, dinghies and windsurfers as there is little traffic on the water. The club has an elevated clubhouse just near Rodd Park with a good view of Iron Cove and a spectacular cityscape view after dark. Members participate in regular races every week throughout the warmer months (September to April).