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Gleewarts 2003 Photoessay
  • An enormous crowd of wizardly types thronged Platform 9 ¾ at Sydney’s Central Station early this morning, as well as a few Muggles tagging along for the show. The Ministry of Magic provided entertainment by jugglers, fire-eaters and harpists, while sundry robed dignitaries greatly resembling Professors from Hogwarts took time from their busy schedule to be there.

  • The fire-twirlers and jugglers amuse the crowd (especially when they drop things for the news cameras). Watching bright shiny things is one way to wake up at 7am on a wet, grey morning.


    The crowd was well-behaved while it waited, as we had been warned that anyone who pushed or shoved would be sent to write notes for Lockhart (on an endless basis!)

  • Gleebooks chose its shopfront trademark font for the signs, disappointing some picky picky HP purists (overheard muttering that it wasn’t like the movie). But the Glebe landmark bookshop did such a good job making so many kids excited and happy that they deserved to make it absolutely clear that Gleebooks was behind it all.

  • The Harry Potter merchandise display of earlier books by JK Rowling and other books on Pottermania tantalised those awaiting the lifting of the worldwide embargo at 9:01 Sydney time.

  • All Aboard! The 3801 Steam Train Society provided the train and carriage attendants for the trip.

  • … and off she goes at 7:30 am

  • The van arrives with the books while the train is on its journey. The Phoenix is uncaged!   The boxes await 9:01 Sydney time.

  • Roger, proud Platform 9¾-guard, event manager and all-round ringmaster, takes a break while awaiting the mayhem when the train comes back.
  • 8:40am The Gleewarts Express returns, full of happy kids replete with chocolate frogs and jelly beans, eager to sort into their Houses to await the uncrating of the books.

  • The wait gives the news crews a chance to talk to all the wizardly folk.

  • (With neckwear like this, you just know that turban belongs to someone in Slytherin.)
  • Our kids ended up in Ravenclaw.(Yes, it was rather windy on the platform)
  • The waiting dragged a bit, enlivened by the Gleebooks Green-cloaks and their HP quiz, but everybody was watching the clock …9:00 and all is well!… 9:01 at last!

    21-900wait.jpg 22-901here.jpg

  • 9:20am- Success!
    23-books.jpg
  • Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix – got it!
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