Strathfield, New South Wales
Sydney, New South Wales
Contemporary apartments in the commercial area
|Population||20,482 (2006 census)|
|Location||14 km (9 mi) west of Sydney CBD|
|LGA(s)||Strathfield Council, City of Canada Bay, Burwood Council|
|Federal Division(s)||Reid, Watson|
Strathfield is a suburb in the Inner West of Sydney, Australia. It is located 14 kilometres west of the Sydney central business district and is the administrative centre of the Strathfield Local Government Area. A small section of the suburb north of the railway line sits in the local government area of the City of Canada Bay, while the area east of The Boulevard, sits within the Burwood Council. North Strathfield and Strathfield South are separate suburbs, to the north and south respectively.
- 1 History
- 2 Schools and churches
- 3 Residential landscape
- 4 Commercial area and transport
- 5 Demographics
- 6 Notable residents
- 7 Culture
- 8 References
- 9 External links
The Strathfield district was originally occupied by the Wangal Indigenous Australians tribe. European settlement commenced in 1793 with the issue of land grants. In 1808, a grant was made to James Wilshire, which forms the largest part of the current suburb of Strathfield. In 1867, this grant was subdivided and sold as the 'Redmire Estate', which promoted the residential development of the district under the suburb name of 'Redmire'. By 1885, sufficient numbers of people resided in the district to enable incorporation of its own local government. The suburb of Redmire was renamed Strathfield c.1886. The suburb was named after a house called 'Strathfield House', which was originally called Stratfield Saye. In 1885, Strathfield Council was incorporated.
Birth of Strathfield
James Wilshire was granted 243 acres (1 km²) of land by Governor Macquarie in 1808 [regranted 1810] following representations from Lord Nelson, a relation by marriage of Wilshire. Ownership was transferred in 1824 to ex-convict Samuel Terry. The land became known as the Redmire Estate, which Michael Jones says could either be named after his home town in Yorkshire or could be named after the "red clay of the Strathfield area". Subdivision of the land commenced in 1867. An early buyer was one-time Mayor of Sydney, Walter Renny who built in 1868 a house they called Stratfieldsaye, possibly after the Duke of Wellington's mansion near Reading, Berkshire. It may have also been named after the transport ship of the same name that transported many immigrants – including Sir Henry Parkes – to Australia, though the transport ship was probably also named after the Duke's mansion as it was built soon after his death and was likely named in his honour. A plaque marking the location of Stratfield Saye can be found in the footpath of Strathfield Avenue, marking the approximate location of the original house [though some of the wording on the plaque is incorrect]. According to local historian Cathy Jones, "ownership of [Stratfieldsaye] was transferred several times including to Davidson Nichol, who shortened the name to 'Strathfield House', then 'Strathfield'."
Strathfield was proclaimed on 2 June 1885 by the Governor of NSW, Sir Augustus Loftus, after residents of the Redmyre area petitioned the New South Wales State government. Residents in parts of Homebush and Druitt Town [now Strathfield South] formed their own unsuccessful counter-petition. It is likely that the region was named Strathfield to neutralise the rivalry between Homebush and Redmire. At the time of incorporation the population of the Strathfield district was estimated at 600 (thus satisfying the 1867 Municipalities Act's requirement of a minimum of 500 residents in an area before a municipality could be established) and the net revenue was £1,210.
Strathfield Council was incorporated in 1885 and included the suburbs of Redmire, Homebush and Druitt Town. The adjoining area of Flemington was unincorporated and was annexed to Strathfield Council in 1892, which increased the size of the Council area by about 50%. The Council formed three wards - Flemington,Homebush and Strathfield - and Aldermen was elected to represent their ward at Council. Wards were abolished in 1916. Following the introduction of the Local Government Act in 1919, Strathfield Council was one of the first to proclaim the major part of its area a residential district by proclamation in 1920. The proclamation excluded any trade, industry, shop, place of amusement, advertisements or residential flats and largely stayed in place until 1969 when the proclamation was suspended by the Strathfield Planning Scheme Ordinance.
On 17 August 1991, seven people were killed, when Wade Frankum stabbed a fifteen year-old girl to death, before running amok with a rifle in the Strathfield Plaza shopping mall, and then turning the weapon on himself. This is commonly known as the Strathfield Massacre and it shocked the nation. A Memorial plaque is located at Churchill Avenue, Strathfield.
Schools and churches
- St Patrick's College is an independent, day school for boys.
- Santa Sabina College is a Roman Catholic, Dominican, day school for girls K-12 and boys K-4. The primary school is known as Santa Maria Del Monte.
- Meriden Anglican School for Girls is an independent, Anglican, day school for girls..
- Trinity Grammar School Preparatory School campus is on The Boulevarde and has classes from Pre-Kindergarten to Year 6.
- St Martha's Primary School
- Strathfield Girls High
- Strathfield South High School
- Homebush Boys High
- Chalmers Road Public School (state government school for students aged four to eighteen years with moderate or severe intellectual disabilities)
- Marie Bashir Public School
- A campus of the Australian Catholic University, the former home of the Christian Brothers novitiate and Catholic Teachers' College.
- The Catholic Institute of Sydney, where priests for the Archdiocese of Sydney, and other theologians and ministers, are trained, is located on the site of the old Australia Post training centre.
- Carrington Avenue Uniting Church
- St Anne's Anglican Church
- St David's Presbyterian Church
- St Martha's Catholic Church
- Sts Peter and Paul Russian Orthodox Cathedral
- Ukrainian Autocephalic Orthodox Church of the Protection of the Theotokos
- Strathfield Korean Uniting Church
- Sydney Chinese Seventh-day Adventist Church
- Trinity Uniting Church
Strathfield's residential landscape is extremely varied, ranging from country-style estates to high-rise apartments. Many styles of architecture have been employed over past decades, with dwellings having been constructed in Victorian, Federation, Interwar period architecture, Californian Bungalow and contemporary periods.
In the early 1900s, grand mansions were constructed here as the country homes of wealthy merchants, many of which have been recognised for their historic value. Some examples include 'Bellevue' in Victoria Street and 'Radstoke' in Malvern Crescent, as well as Helikon, built in 1893 and designed by Charles Slayter, which is now listed on the Register of the National Estate. Since the mid-1990s, a construction boom has seen the redevelopment of many of Strathfield's more modest homes, typically Californian Bungalows built during the 1930s and 1940s.
Primarily these have been replaced by modern, multi-million dollar mansions, although Strathfield has retained its wide avenues and most of the extensive natural vegetation. Streets such as Victoria Street, Llandillo Avenue and Kingsland Road predominantly feature older mansions, while Agnes Street, Newton Road and Barker Road are common locations for new homes.
Additionally, decreasing land sizes through subdivision has led to an increase in residential densities, reflecting the outward expansion of Sydney's inner city. A large proportion of Strathfield's population now dwells in apartments with the area immediately surrounding Strathfield railway station dominated by high rise residential towers. Smaller apartment buildings are located in other areas within the suburbs, were mostly built during the 1960s and 1970s. In the last century a number of grand Strathfield homes have become private schools:
- Holyrood - Santa Sabina
- Brunyarra – Santa Maria Del Monte
- Lauriston – Santa Maria Del Monte
- Llandilo – Trinity Grammar School
- Somerset – Trinity Grammar School
- Milverton – Trinity Grammar School
- Lingwood – Meriden School
- Wadham – Wadham Preparatory School, later purchased by Meriden
Commercial area and transport
Strathfield is known as a regional centre for education and Strathfield railway station is a major transport hub. Strathfield town centre contains Strathfield Plaza shopping centre and a small strip of shops, restaurants, cafes and a Police shopfront. Strathfield railway station is a major interchange on the Sydney Trains and NSW TrainLink networks and for buses serving the inner west. The M4 Western Motorway begins at Strathfield and heads west to Parramatta, Blacktown and Penrith. Parramatta Road links Strathfield east to Burwood and the Sydney CBD and west to Parramatta.
According to the 2006 census, Strathfield had a total population of 20,482 people. It has become one of the most culturally diverse suburbs in Sydney, particularly so in the high-density housing regions around Strathfield railway station. Overall 51.5% of people were born overseas, with migrants born in South Korea (8.6%), China (8%), India (7.8%), Hong Kong (2.6%) and Sri Lanka (2.4%). Of residents born in Australia, only 22% have Australian parents. Overall, common ancestries (by country of birth parents) include China (18%), UK (8.3%), India (8.2%), Italy (5.6%), Lebanon (4.8%), Ireland (4.6%) and Greece (2.7%).
- George Sydney Jones (1868–1927), architect of Trinity Congregational Church and the following Strathfield houses; Springfort (1894); Darenth (1895); Bickley (1894); Treghre (1899); and Luleo (1912).
- Harry Kent (1852–1938), architect, alderman for the Municipality of Strathfield and architect of the Strathfield Town Hall.
- William Arnott, founder of Arnott's Biscuits.
- Alfred John Bush (1878–1951), founder of A J Bush & Sons.
- Sir Robert Crichton-Brown (1919–2013), businessman, soldier and sailor, lived in Strathfield in the 1920s and 1930s.
- Edward Lloyd Jones (1844–1894), head of the department store David Jones Limited, and his son;
- Edward Lloyd Jones (1874–1934), Shorthorn cattle breeder and former chairman of David Jones Limited, and his brother;
- Charles Lloyd Jones (1878–1958), former chairman of David Jones Limited and former chairman of the Australian Broadcasting Commission.
- Frederick Augustus Bolles Peters (1866-1937), ice cream manufacturer 'Peter's Ice Cream'
Fashion and society
- Barbara Craven (1920–2012), devotee of French fashion, lived in Strathfield in the 1920s and 30s.
- Lady McMahon (1932–2010), spouse of the 20th Prime Minister of Australia, was born in Strathfield.
- Sir Philip Sydney Jones (1836–1918), medical practitioner and University of Sydney vice-chancellor lived at Llandilo on The Boulevarde.
- Elaine Cassidy (1930–2014), Mayor of Woollahra and champion bridge player, was born in Strathfield and attended Meriden School.
- Earl Page (1880–1961), 11th Prime Minister of Australia.
- Frank Forde, Prime Minister of Australia
- Rev Professor Hubert Cunliffe-Jones (1905–1991): Congregational church minister, chair of the Congregational Union of England and Wales and a Professor at the University of Manchester was the son of the Rev Walter Cunliffe-Jones of the Strathfield-Homebush Congregational church (now Uniting Church – Korean Parish).
- Alan Davidson (born 1929), cricketer who played for Australia from 1953 until 1963.
- Daphne Akhurst (1903-1933), tennis player
Strathfield has made an impact on the indie rock and indie pop scene, producing bands such as Prince Vlad & the Gargoyle Impalers, Lunatic Fringe, The Mexican Spitfires and Women of Troy. It has also inspired pop songs such as The Mexican Spitfires's song "Rookwood" about Rookwood Cemetery and the legendary Blitzkrieg punk rock of Radio Birdman's classic mid-1970s "Murder City Nights". Indie pop legend Grant McLennan of The Go-Betweens also called Carrington Avenue, Strathfield home for a few years in the 1990s.
- 2006 Census
- Australian Suburb Guide: Sydney Inner West Retrieved 7 August 2013.
- Jones, Cathy. "Origin of the name of Strathfield". Strathfield Heritage Website. Retrieved 11 May 2014.
- Jones, Michael (1985). Oasis in the West: Strathfield's first hundred years. North Sydney: Allen & Unwin Australia. ISBN 0-86861-407-6.
- Jones, Cathy (2004). Strathfield – origin of the name. Retrieved 4 October 2004.
- Jones, Cathy , A [very] short history of Strathfield, Strathfield District Historical Society Newsletter.
- Reps, John W. Fitgerald, Critique of Capital City Plans. Cornell University.
- Fitzgerald, John Daniel (27 July 1912). The Capital plans, the city of the future. The Sydney Morning Herald.
- "Australian School Choice- St Patrick's College". Retrieved 27 June 2007.
- "Trinity Grammar School". Schools. Australian Boarding Schools' Association. 2007. Archived from the original on 17 November 2007. Retrieved 24 January 2008.
- Strathfield History – Brunyarra
- Strahfield History – Lauriston
- Strathfield History – Schools
- Strathfield History – Somerset
-  Retrieved 28 August 2012
- Kearys Corner at Strathfield Heritage
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