The area was originally a private residence until it was purchased by the Colonial Government and transformed into a psychiatric hospital, known until 1914 as the Callan Park Hospital for the Insane, which remained in use until 1994 when it was relocated to new buildings on the site. After a period of extensive renovation, the Kirkbride Complex which housed the former hospital, is now occupied by the Sydney College of the Arts. The popular Bay Run runs through the park along the foreshore of Iron Cove.
In 1839, Crown Solicitor and Police Magistrate John Ryan Brenan made a series of purchases to acquire the Callan Park land, which he named Garry Owen Estate. Brenan built a house on the land overlooking the Parramatta River, which he named Garry Owen house, and this was a local centre for social life until his bankruptcy in 1864. The land was purchased by Sydney businessman John Gordon who renamed the property Callan Park and subdivided the land ready for auction as a new waterfront suburb.
The entire area was purchased by the Colonial Government as a site for a new lunatic asylum. The main complex was completed in 1885 and continued to be used for patients until 1994. Sydney College of the Arts took possession of the building in 1996.
- Callan Park Website, , Accessed March 2009.
- NSW Heritage Register; Callan Park Conservation Area & Buildings ; Accessed October 2006.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Callan Park, New South Wales.|
- Friends of Callan Park
- Local Images at InnerWest ImageBank
- Local History Collection, Leichhardt Council