In 1839 Governor Gipps chose Cockatoo Island as the site of a new penal establishment. Convicts worked quarrying stone to build the prison barracks, guardhouse, granary silos, official residences and eventually the Fitzroy Dock (which took 10 years to complete).
In 1869 the penal settlement was closed and the prisoners were relocated to the Darlinghurst Gaol. The complex was then utilised as an Industrial School for Girls. However, in 1888 the girls were moved to Parramatta and the old penal settlement reverted to a gaol to ease the over-crowded conditions at Darlinghurst. In 2010 Cockatoo Island was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
'glamping' on cockatoo island
The prisoner’s appalling accommodation is in contrast to Luisa and David’s ‘glamping’ Cockatoo Island experience over the weekend. Where else can you relax in the middle of beautiful Sydney Harbour!
Now a low impact campsite to the environment, with new indoor-outdoor toilet and shower facilities by Fox Johnson Architects. Well worth a visit!