Isipingo Beach was an isolated island between the Indian Ocean and a sea of sugar cane, bordered by the 'Tweni and Umlaas rivers, where I reckon that where most of us could greet at least 75% of the population by name, and a stranger stood out.
We had Touring Talkies on a Thursday night, later supplied by Jack Pope, at first in the River Mouth Tea Room, and later in the Memorial Hall. There were no malls, and TV was only a vague name. The River Mouth Tea Room was the usual hang-out place for the locals. Every second Sunday afternoon (high spring tide around 4 0'clock) was good surfing at the mouth and the Tea Room did well from visitors from around the area, Tom Rowles was well known for his crumpets.
The only pubs were at the Island Hotel and at the Country Club on 2nd Avenue. Other Private Hotels were the Glen Erin, Ozone and Veerhurst up Delta Road overlooking the sea. Also, at Tiger Rocks, was the Castle and Brettel's Tea Kiosk run by Barnie Brettel and Tarzan's at the end of the road.
The Isipingo Beach Primary and Ferrars boarding Schools saw to our 3 r's up to standard six, after which it was either boarding school or travel to Durban by train. We never got home before 4-30, after leaving home at about 7 am. There was at one time a boarding house for youngsters on 2nd Avenue just past the Club.
All in all, it was a wonderful place in which to grow up. Fishing was good and the swimming excellent. There was hockey and cricket at the sports ground, with tennis bowls and billiards at the Club, and a first class golf course. What more could we want?
During the Christmas and July seasons we had regular visitors from around the country and from as far as the Congo and the Rhodesian copper belt. We saw our first bikini which was worn by a bronzed beauty from the Congo, who obviously had an all over tan. Carol Siedle
Isipingo Beach is a seaside resort town built on a high ridge of sand at the mouth of the Siphingo River. It currently forms part of eThekwini and is situated 19 km south of Durban in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. The town is named after the Siphingo River, which in turn is thought to be named for the intertwining cat-thorn shrubs present in the area, or the river's winding course. The town comprises Isipingo Rail, Isipingo Hills, Lotus Park, Orient Hills, Malakazi and Isipingo Beach. The area has fine beaches and is regularly frequented by fishermen, especially during the sardine run. The town itself has a primary school, library and is close to major shopping centres. A main road connects the town to the M4 highway which provides easy access to Durban city. Isipingo Beach adjoins a major industrial area, Prospecton, which is the location of South Africa's largest automobile assembly plant, that of Toyota. The facility, covering almost 9 square kilometers, is a place of employment for many Isipingo Beach residents. Isipingo Secondary is the local high school. The populace is predominantly of Indian origin, and the town houses mosques and a temple. Isipingo Beach was the only part of Apartheid South Africa that was taken away from the `whites´ and given to the `Indians´ under protest from the `whites´. Neighbouring suburbs include Isipingo Hills, Isipingo Rail and Amanzimtoti. The Durban International Airport was situated on the fringes of Isipingo Beach. The airport will be transformed into a new container port. In South African history, Isipingo is known for the area where Dick King is buried.