86 world records have been set at North Sydney Pool by a “who’s who” of Australian swimmers between 1953 and 1978.
Before his death in 2012, the great Murray Rose told writer Ian Hanson that North Sydney was his “favourite pool”, despite some faults.
“For Rose and his coach Sam Herford, things didn’t always go according to plan at a pool open to all kinds of weather and the deafening sounds of trains that would often delay the start of races,” Hanson wrote.
“Frank O’Neill set the first world record at North Sydney,” Hanson said, “it was in the 400m Individual Medley in 1953.
“The final world record was in 1978 when Moscow Olympic golden girl Michelle Ford set a new world mark of 8:31:30 in the 800m freestyle.”
In between those two bookends, Dawn Fraser, Lorraine Crapp, Kevin Berry, Bob Windle, John and Ilsa Konrads, Shane Gould, Brad Cooper, Graham Windeatt, Jenny Turrall and Stephen Holland would add their names to the pool’s historic Wall of Fame.