Rose Bay was named after The Right Honourable George Rose (he was not knighted) who was joint Secretary to the
British Treasury with Thomas Steele, after whom Steel(e) Point at Nielsen Park was named. The name Rose Bay was
used as early as 1778 by Captain John Hunter.
When the first Qantas flying boat took off in 1938 from Sydney’s Rose Bay bound for England,
there were no terminal buildings, jetties or even gangplanks. A small ferry took passengers out to the
mooring. Indeed the trip was treated as a sea voyage, and fishing line was provided for use on any of the
thirty stops along the way.
GEORGE ROBERTS, QANTAS ENGINEER 1936-1970: On 5 July 1938, the first flying boat took off from Rose Bay to fly
through to Southampton. The reason for Rose Bay being chosen was...is the fact that it was, firstly, a very large
bay and largely still water. Initially, we had no shipway, no hangar, so it made it quite difficult to operate
under those conditions. Working over the water like that, very often, the tool would fall from your fingers and
once it went down to the bottom that was the end of it. So we drilled holes in our spanners and screwdrivers and
things like that. We attached a cord to them, but many, many were lost overboard.
The flying boat was a very much larger aircraft, an all-metal aircraft, for the first time. It was the first
aircraft to arrive in Australia with an automatic pilot. It was the first aircraft we had with a galley and
steward. And the flight deck, of course, was above the main deck, away from the passengers for the first time.
Largely, it was intended for airmail. Passengers were few - only...just 15 people. We had 31 flying boats operating
between Southampton and Sydney and they came here on three a week. The route of it was up the coast to Brisbane,
refuelling, Gladstone, on to Townsville where it night-stopped. They flew across the Cape York Peninsula, to
Karumba, from there to Groote Eyelandt and on to Darwin. Then was there across the Timor, over to Kupang and then
through to Bima, on to Surabaya, and Batavia, which today is Jakarta, and on to Singapore. And that took nine and a
half days. Prior to that, the flight to England was 12 and a half days.
Kincoppal traces its origins to
the establishment of two schools. The first, the Convent of the Sacred Heart, Rose Bay, was founded in
1882. The other, named Kincoppal was established at Elizabeth Bay in 1909. In 1971 these two
schools were amalgamated on the Convent of the Sacred Heart campus and became known as Kincoppal-Rose
Bay, School of the Sacred Heart.
The original building, leased in
1882 and later purchased by the Society of the Sacred Heart, was a private home, built in 1851. The first
permanent school building, completed in 1888, was the five level central facade.