Once a centre of industry, Redfern holds the enviable record of being the first area in Sydney equipped with electric lighting. It was named in honour of ship’s surgeon and former convict Dr William Redfern, who became assistant surgeon at Sydney Hospital in 1808.
There has been a great deal of residential development in recent years and the suburb has become a highly sought-after place to live. It is almost as central as its more affluent neighbour, Surry Hills, yet property prices are relatively more affordable and while gentrification is moving at a rapid pace, Redfern retains much of the character and ethnicity of its working class beginnings.
Redfern’s streets are lined with grand Victorian terraces that sit around the corner from rows of simple worker’s cottages. Several modern developments, such as Moore Park Gardens are testament to the growing need for luxury accommodations in this ultra-convenient locale.
Places to eat
A range of funky wine bars and cafes are popping up along Redfern Street. Waterloo’s renowned Danks Street offers a couple of excellent daytime cafes and there is no shortage of Indian, Italian and other ethnic restaurants on Crown and Bourke Streets in nearby Surry Hills. Cleveland Street is also Redfern’s best ‘Eat Street’, particularly well known for the Lebanese eateries in the area near the intersection with Elizabeth Street and for a great range of Indian establishments towards South Dowling Street.
For recreation, you could play tennis or swim at the recently upgraded Prince Alfred Park, watch a junior or representative rugby league match at Redfern Oval, or head to nearby Moore Park for a game of golf. There are several art galleries in Danks Street and for evening entertainment, visit the pubs on Cleveland Street or one of the wine bars.
Schools & education
Sydney Boys & Girls High are both easily accessible by foot and there are several kindergartens plus the Bourke Street Public School close by in Surry Hills.
Redfern is just 2km from the CBD and is accessible by CityRail trains, one station away from the city. Redfern station is the closest station to the main campus of Sydney University at Camperdown/Darlington.