The sand bagging of Police Headquarters

Published in Police News Magazine January edition 1987, Page 27. Submitted by a member Bob Lawler.

Police sandbagging the old Police Headquarters building in Phillip St on Christmas Day 1942

Ex-member (Sgt. 3/C) Bob Lawler discovered this wartime photo when going through old papers and sent it in to attest to his humble contribution to the war effort by sandbagging the old Police Headquarters building in Phillip St on Christmas Day 1942, the time when the Japanese midget submarines were prowling Sydney Harbour. Adding that it might be of interest to those members whose memories go back to that period he attached the following note:

"There is a story behind the sandbagging of H.Q. We were acting under the direction of Inspector "Nipper" James and had almost completed the stacking to 6 feet in Phillip and Hunter Streets when "Nipper' came on the scene and threw up his hands saying, "It's no good! They should be three feet out from the wall!"

The late (then Sgt.) Jim Ferguson in no uncertain terms told him what he could do with the sandbags and not to worry about the three feet. "Nipper” threw up his hands in shock and took off for the sandhills.

"Apparently realizing our condition he obtained a 9 gallon keg of the good stuff and returned soon after. After imbibing, to build up our strength, we returned to the task of dismantling literally hundreds of bags and restacking them three feet out from the wall. Somehow the bags were much lighter, although I will admit that at the end of the day which was about 90 degrees in the old scale, we were well and truly zonked. I am leading the team with ex Constable Laurie Hubberd (dec), ex Superintendent Jack Christie (dec)and ex Inspector Jim Ferguson (dec.)"