Saturday Night Nostalgia: The great Aussie backyards we grew up in

Nothing beats the backyards we grew up with. Source: National Archives of Australia

They don’t make backyards like they used to!

Long before the days of iPads and video games, Aussie kids spent a lot of time in the backyard of their own home and that of friends – if they weren’t out in the streets, playing there instead.

While modern houses still have backyards, it’s fair to say that they’re not the same as they once were. Large areas where you’d play football or a game of cricket are typically replaced by stylish patios and matching outdoor settings. Then there were the items that most Millennials wouldn’t be able to even identify, some of which we’ve pictured below.

Which one of these did you have in your backyard as a kid?

The dunny

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Ah, who could forget the good old thunderbox? Some houses had them right up to the 1970s.

Remember using one of these? Source: Pixabay

Hills Hoist

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Remember the Hills Hoist? The adjustable rotary clothes line was perfect for hanging out large items, and of course some kids couldn’t resist swinging off them as they spun round.

Did your mum ever yell at you for swinging around on one of these? Source: National Archives of Australia

 Rope clothes line 

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If you didn’t have a Hills Hoist, chances are you grew up around a twine or rope clothes line, propped up by a plank of wood or forked branch trimmed to the right height. You may even remember your mother or father having to adjust the rope when heavy clothes weighed it down, so they didn’t scrape on the ground.

Did a rope clothes line ever extend across your yard? Source: Pexels

Rotary mowers

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Back in the day before Jim’s Mowing, most families kept their own yards and gardens in order, either by using a rotary mower or one of the pull-string variety. Or they put the kids to work doing so!

Did you ever get pocket money for mowing the lawns? Source: National Archives of Australia

Clothes mangle

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Remember having to crank one of these in order to wring water from wet clothes? Before washing machines with fast spin cycles were introduced, using a clothes mangle was the fastest way to reduce drying time.

Before washing machines, many families used one of these to wring their wet clothes. Source: Pixabay

Do you remember having any of these in your yard? What do you miss most about the backyard you grew up with?