Newcastle – The Missing Years – Images from the 1930s and 1940s

Invite to the Launch

In June 2010, Newcastle Herald journalist Greg Ray bought 20 kilograms of glass and film negatives at an on-line auction.

To his amazement, the boxes of old negatives – when scanned – revealed a treasure-trove of professional quality images of Newcastle and the Hunter in the 1930s and 1940s.

Even more amazingly, it appeared that some of the photos were almost certainly pictures “lost” decades ago from the city’s newspaper archives.

Air-raid shelters in Hunter Street, torpedo-damaged ships in Newcastle Harbour, Spitfires at Williamtown and Newcastle’s riotous celebration of VP Day in 1945 are just some of the unforgettable images to emerge from this cache of material.

Greg and his wife Sylvia have restored the images and published a selection of them in a book: Newcastle, the Missing Years.

Images from the Launch – Courtesy of Mr Bill Hillier

Lord Mayor John Tate speaks
Greg Ray shake hands with Lord Mayor as Sylvia looks on
Crowds at Launch
Greg Ray signs books
Proud authors Sylvia and Greg Ray

22 thoughts on “Newcastle – The Missing Years – Images from the 1930s and 1940s

  1. Hello, I am enquiring about retailing this book. I am the manger of two shopping centre Newsagencies, one in Lake Fair Mt Hutton, the other in Belmont Citi Centre.
    I have taken enquiries from customers wanting to purchase the book from us, mostly elderly customers whom cannot travel or have no transport.
    I have tried contacting the Newcastle Herald, however they have informed me that the books will only be available in selected Newsagencies, which the above two mentioned stores are not in that selected group.


    Kyle Gribble
    Nextra Newsagency Mt Hutton

  2. I would like to buy the book and calendar Newcastle – The Missing Years, but The Newcastle Herald have advised they are out of stock. Please advise where I can buy.

    1. The book is sold out, but calendars may still be available from Garden City Newsagency, Lowes newsagency on the corner of Hunter and Bolton Streets or Hudson’s newsagency in the Mall.

  3. I, too, am looking for somewhere to buy the book Newcastle – The Missing Years. Is it possible to obtain it by mail, as I don’t live in Newcastle and wouldn’t be able to get to a source of supply before they ran out. I tried on a recent trip to Newcastle, but was told by the Newcastle Herald that they were out of stock.

  4. Apologies to those who haven’t been able to buy a copy. The initial print run of 5000 sold out in three weeks and although we have moved quickly to order a reprint of another 2500 books these won’t be available until at least mid-January.

    1. Hi Greg – Could you please tell me if there is a list my name can be placed on to purchase a copy of your book. (I live in Canberra). My brother has tried to locate a copy, but they have all sold out.
      Thank you

  5. Hi Sylvia and Greg. Thank you so much for having this book printed. I am desperate to obtain a copy as one of the photos printed in the Herald article shows my father getting off the train during the war. Would it be possible for you to please notify me when a copy would be available as I don’t want to miss out again. Other locals must be just as excited about this book as I am. Is it possible to pre order a copy?

    Regards Elaine

  6. Hi Greg, Q’s books here. We have had several requests for your book,we would very much like to be able to offer it at our two stores in newcastle.Please advise on how we may be able to place an order for some.

    Many thanks, Brian and Aileen Querruell

  7. Hi Greg and Sylvia,

    Congratulations on your great book. I would very much like to buy some copies, especially one for my elderly brother living in Mt Gambier.
    Could you please advise me on how I can place an order and whether I can buy them on line.

    My Email address is as above.

    Thanking you, Irene

    1. Hi Irene,
      Copies are available from the Newcastle Herald and from a number of Newcastle area newsagencies.

      You can call us on 0418 160087

  8. Hi Greg, is there any chance you could send out an email when the 2nd reprint has been done as i would love to purchase a few copies?

  9. Hi Greg,

    I am interested in purchasing a copy of your book “The Missing Years” when it is reprinted. Please contact me by email, price and where to purchase it.

    Thanking you,

    Roslyn Parsons

  10. For those interested, Newcastle, the Missing Years has been reprinted and copies are now available from the Newcastle Herald and from some newsagencies.

  11. this would be the best I hope there are many more. I live in Greta where can I get the next one ,can I get it on line? I want one for me and my 96 year old mum, who lved this one. val Randall

    1. Hi Val,
      The book is available through the Herald website, from many newsagencies and from McDonalds bookshop in Maitland.
      If all else fails, call us on 49434974.

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