Henley South Kiosk

Narrated by Quenten Iskov

Do you remember what Saltpetre is?

From the 1930s until the late 1970s, a small red brick kiosk was rented by the Newcombe family – it operated in front of the hotel, at the end of Henley Beach Road and was open for summer and school holidays.

Local resident Noel Newcombe remembers ….

“In the mornings Jim my brother and me would load up two wheelbarrows with stock from our shop on Seaview Road, pulling them over the sand hills to the kiosk. Dad would boil a copper in the Kiosk and sold trays of tea. Drinks, lollies and ice creams were stored in a huge ice chest and Jim also went around the beach selling lollies from a lolly tray. Woodroofe’s drinks were delivered by horse and cart to the shop as well as ice and saltpetre for the ice cream chest and it all had to be carried over the sand hills. One of the biggest sellers was hot water. It was for people on the beach who had no way of heating water for their tea and coffee.”

Yvonne Penno (nee Newcombe) remembers:

… “At one time there was a huge westerly storm and at high tide the kiosk was found to be surrounded by deep water. Mum ran home, pulled down her clothesline, and raced back to the beach, giving it to a lifesaver, who swam round the kiosk securing it, so it would not be washed away.”

in May, 1953 a great storm severely damaged the foreshore at Henley Beach. ‘The Advertiser’ newspaper reported:

” ….. sections of the sea wall hundreds of feet long, together with steel and concrete electric light poles were reduced to a twisted mass.”

Sadly, the kiosk was undermined, causing it to partially collapse. Many bathing boxes and beach shacks at Henley South were also washed away and beach shelters and playgrounds destroyed.

Image credit: Henley & Grange Historical Society

Did you ever visit the Henley South kiosk? Please share your memories with us.


  1. Robert Boin

    Hello, yes I remember visiting the kiosk in the mid 1960’s with my dad and my younger brother when I would have been about 5 or 6 years old at the time. I remember walking down the concrete stairs that were to the side of the kiosk that lead down to the beach. It would have been my first memory of going to the beach accompanied by that “beachy” smell which takes me back to those days when I smell that sand, seaweed and salt, to this very day. Sometimes I wonder whether my memory of the time was correct, but seeing the photo atop I remember my younger care free days at the beach. Thanks

  2. AH

    My father (born in 1926) and his brother, who lived on Seaview Road used to erect sun shelters on the beach in the school holidays for people to hire during their visits to Henley .


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