THE STORYTELLERS

DIANE OWEN

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Dulux Factory

The Dulux factory

 

DIANE OWEN: We were talking about this the other day, actually: the 'West' is wonderful, because it is so diverse and its multicultural and, when I was growing up, there was a lot of factories and all our parents worked in those factories. It wasn't an affluent area at all. Rhodes was all paint factories. My father was a forklift driver at Dunlop's which was the … over at … where Birkenhead Point now is and that was the Dunlop's tyre factory, and when that shut down, he moved over to the paint factory.

So, a lot of the people in the area were European at that stage and, so its got that really heavy Italian background for Five Dock, and also this area. But also other Europeans: we've got Greeks and Italians, and when I was growing up, that was the main mix.

Now we've got, as you say, a lot of Asian races moving in and I just find … I know when I was at the school you'd get the grandmothers who couldn't even speak English and they'd be at the school showing us how to make dumplings for the kids. So, they're really community involved and they like to be involved in the children's lives as well, and that's how its been.

Children are really important and all the races just all pull together. I really, I love it; absolutely love the diversity of this area and I also love the fact that my children learn to relate to people of all different races, that there's not that exclusion like the 'insular peninsula', you know …

OLEV MUSKA: That's very good …

DIANE: … on the North Shore, where they just can't cope with those - the different races - because they just don't have exposure to it and, my children, you know, they'll talk about their best friend and tell me his name but they won't mention that he is Asian, or the girlfriend that my eldest boy was going out with happened to be African - a black African. But he didn't mention the colour of her skin or anything - just told me all about how beautiful she was and I just love that. I think that's fantastic! I'm really happy with that.

 

BACKGROUND

In response to community consultation, a number of local residents were interviewed and recorded. The sessions took place in December 2012 and February 2013 at Concord Library.

A short excerpt from each resident appears on this website. Together, they form a cross-section of insights into the wonderful community that is of and around the North Strathfield area.

The full interviews will be archived and available for borrowing at the City of Canada Bay Council Library Services.


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