The Noel Davies Oral History Archive

The Noel Davies Oral History Archive is a collection of CD oral history productions, and includes the ‘Star Hotel Riot’ (2003) ‘Around and About Lake Macquarie’ (2003). Noel completed a BA History (Hons) at the University of Newcastle.

Noel Davies.jpg

Noel Davies – Courtesy Newcastle Herald

Star Hotel Riot

Noel Davies speaks to witnesses of the Star Hotel Riot that took place at the closing of the Star Hotel in Newcastle, NSW on the 19 September 1979. The interviews run for 75 minutes and consists of five interviews. Interviews are with Ian Antonsen – a hotel patron, Barry Nancarrow – cameraman from NBN Channel 3 Television, Ron Sorensen – hotel security, Frank Mackaway – attending Senior Constable of Police, Peter DeJong – lead singer in the performing rock band The Heroes.

A song that was played on the night was The Star and The Slaughter by the Heroes-‘‘I want action, I want fighting in the streets, I’m gonna take this town by storm,Gonna burn the village down, Take no hostage, give no quarter,  They will remember the night of the star and the slaughter.’’

Around and About Lake Macquarie

‘Around and About Lake Macquarie’ is a series of interviews conducted by Noel Davies in connection with people and events around Lake Macquarie. This interview is with Group Captain Athol Wearne Commander of Catalina Aircraft, Grahame Burgess detailing the life and times of the Lake Macquarie Ferry- The Wangi Queen. Interview with Betty Lynton in connection with the preservation of Dobell House, Lin Hurt discussing his life and 60 years of business at Toronto. A short review of Governor Lachlan Macquarie. And interview with Tony Mowbray about his round the world voyage. He had recently returned in 2001 from a six month single handed non-stop unassisted around the world  voyage on the 43 ft. yacht Solo Globe Challenger.

These histories record the public memory at a certain time, memories that can be mapped in time and place. Hearing the past can inspire us, provide new knowledge so we can better understand, and plan our future.

The audio recordings are held in Cultural Collections at the Auchmuty Library, University of Newcastle (Australia) and have been digitised by Cultural Collections and made freely available to the wider global research community. You are welcome to use the sources for study and personal research purposes. Please acknowledge as Courtesy of the “Noel Davies Oral History Archive, University of Newcastle (Australia)” For commercial requests you must obtain permission by contacting Cultural Collections.

If you are the subject of the stories, or know the subject of the stories, and have cultural or other reservations about the stories available on this website and would like to discuss this with us please contact Cultural Collections

If you have any further information on the audio files, please leave a comment.

We thank Noel Davies for giving permission to make these oral histories available to the wider community.


Youtube Video Star Hotel Riot

Chad Watson (9 January 2015) Newcastle Herald The Heroes of the Star Hotel riot rise again 35 years later

Other Oral Histories found at UONCC Soundcloud

Summary of key ‘Star Hotel Riot’ resources compiled for Wikipedia Edit-a-thon September 2020 by Gerard Harding.


Many hurt, cars gutted in riot. Newcastle Morning Herald 20 September, p 1. 1979.


Rioters will be brought to book. Star Hotel Newcastle Morning Herald 21.9.79 pp1, 7


The Bloody Battle of King Street – Star Wake Riot Rock CityStar Hotel Newcastle Sun 20.9.79 pp1-5

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