Memories of the Sydney Hilton bombing
The bombing of the Hilton Hotel in Sydney on 13 February 1978 was a shocking case of domestic terrorism. The bomb was planted in a garbage bin outside the hotel and exploded when picked up by a garbage truck. Two garbage men were killed, along with a police constable at the entrance to the hotel who died later from injuries.
Twelve foreign leaders were staying at the Hilton, in Sydney for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Regional Meeting (CHOGRM).
Australia’s Prime Minister at the time, Malcolm Fraser, was also there with several staff members, including secretary Cheryl Cartwright, and Caroline Cooper who was Private Secretary to Fraser’s Chief of Staff.
In these two edited excerpts from oral history interviews, Cheryl and Caroline recall the bomb exploding in the early hours of the morning.
Listen on to Cheryl Cartwright:
…and Caroline Cooper:
Cheryl Cartwright was recorded for the Oral History Program by Barry York between 2009 and 2011. Caroline Cooper was recorded by Edward Helgeby in 2011. The full interviews can be listened to on our oral histories website: