Quakers Hill, New South Wales
Sydney, New South Wales
Quakers Court shopping centre
|Population||27,080 (2016 census)|
|Location||40 km (25 mi) north-west of Sydney CBD|
|LGA(s)||City of Blacktown|
Quakers Hill is a suburb of Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. It is 40 kilometres (25 mi) north-west of the Sydney central business district, in the local government area of the City of Blacktown. Quakers Hill is part of the Greater Western Sydney region. Quakers Hill is colloquially known as 'Quakers'.
The first recorded cartographic use in NSW of the 'Quaker' name is that of "Quaker's Row", today's Church Street, Parramatta. In November 1788 a second settlement is established by Governor Phillip at Rose Hill and was renamed in June 1791, Parramatta. In July 1790 he laid out his plan for the town, with High Street (now George) the main road with another (143 feet / 43.6 m wide) starting at the south bank of the river where Phillip intended a town square with government buildings and an extended wharf. This he named Quakers Row.
Alan Sharpe, in his "Pictorial History Blacktown and District" (referenced below) on page 84 has no mention of the historic town plan of July 1790.
Development at Parramatta was swift, with the Rev Samuel Marsden establishing conformist religious services. The Quaker's Row inhabitants were moved further west to The Quaker's Hills, where they re-established themselves. It is said they were responsible for burying the dead in simple cairn marked graves that lay in the fields, paddocks and creeks who were all victims of the 1804 uprising and rebellion.
The name Quakers Hill was in an 1806 report of the area by government surveyor James Meehan. The origin of the name is unclear and the next references are more than sixty years later when Thomas Harvey used it for his property in what is now western Quakers Hill. When the railway station was built in 1872, it was called Douglas' Siding for over thirty years. The catalyst for the name change came with the subdivision of Harvey's Quakers Hill property in 1904. The residents of the newly forming village preferred that name and in 1905, the name of the railway station was changed to Quakers Hill.
Postal services began in 1907 and the first post office was built in 1915. A school opened in the Presbyterian church hall in what is now Marayong in 1911 and Quakers Hill Public School took its first students in 1912. During the 1920s, the population grew dramatically, a number of shops opened in the area around the station and a public hall, the Empire Theatre, opened in 1925, screening movies and hosting dances. The village became a centre for the surrounding farms.
In the 1960s, Sydney's suburban sprawl reached the Quakers Hill area and the five acre farms surrounding the village began to be subdivided. In 1994, HMAS Nirimba, a naval training property on the western side of the suburb, was decommissioned and converted into an educational precinct. In 1996, a new development in the north-east of Quakers Hill was converted into a new suburb, Acacia Gardens.
Nursing home fire
On 18 November 2011 an early morning fire at Quakers Hill Nursing Home killed 11 elderly residents, seriously injured others and caused the evacuation of up to 100 people. Three people died in the fire, and a further eight residents of the home died later in hospital from their injuries. The fire started in two places and was regarded by police as suspicious.
A nurse working in the home, 36-year-old Roger Kingsley Dean, was later arrested and charged with four counts of murder. He was later charged over more subsequent deaths. On 2 November 2012 the accused pleaded not guilty to eight counts of recklessly causing grievous bodily harm and eleven counts of murder. He had wished to plead guilty to manslaughter, but that was rejected by the Crown. He did plead guilty to two larceny charges relating to theft of prescription painkillers from the nursing home. He stood trial in the Supreme Court in May 2013. On 27 May 2013, Dean pleaded guilty to eleven counts of murder, and on 1 August 2013 he was sentenced to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.
In September 2014 an inquest into the deaths opened, and its results were released on 9 March 2015. After finding that the nursing home operators Domain Principal Group (now known as Opal Aged Care) didn't look into Dean's past before employment, Hugh Dillon, the NSW deputy coroner recommended: a database of healthcare workers be created with details of their background; that workers be trained to recognise signs of co-workers abusing drugs; and that nursing home door and corridors be constructed to allow beds to be moved rapidly during emergencies. Dillon also suggested that two fire-fighters receive bravery awards.
Public Transport to and from Quakers Hill is provided by train and a number of bus services by Busways, namely routes: 731 (outskirts), 732 (west), 734 (outskirts), 745 (all over), 752 (all over) and 753 (south). Quakers Hill railway station is on the Richmond branch of the North Shore & Western Line of the Sydney Trains network. Bus services connect to Sydney Metro network at Tallawong, Rouse Hill and Bella Vista stations.
Quakers Hill has experienced much road development over recent years including the construction of a new road leading directly to the education precinct, bypassing the town centre. The Westlink M7, which links the suburb directly to all major routes in and out of the greater Sydney region, opened in December 2005. Following this opening the road overpass for the Quakers Hill Parkway has been widened from two to four lanes, including the bridge over the railway line, improving toll-free traffic flow between Richmond and Sunnyholt Roads.
Quakers Hill has a blend of old and new developments. There are some Housing Commission Houses on the older (southern) side of Quakers Hill, mainly near Marayong. The western side of the railway line predominantly has houses on standard residential blocks, some built when HMAS Nirimba was an active naval base, others through the 1960s and 1970s. The eastern side of the railway line consists of dwellings constructed since the 1980s, with a high proportion of high density homes or townhouses.
Quakers Hill is home to numerous schools and educational institutions. The oldest is Quakers Hill Public School, opened in 1912. Two other public primary schools (Barnier and Hambledon) were opened in the 1990s to cope with suburb's growing population. High schools in Quakers Hill are split between Quakers Hill High School, catering to Years 7-10, and Wyndham College, years 11-12. There is also a Catholic primary school (Mary Immaculate) and high school (Terra Sancta College). Post-secondary education is serviced by Nirimba TAFE College and the University of Western Sydney, Blacktown Campus. Four of these facilities (UWS, Nirimba TAFE, Wyndham and Terra Sancta) are located together in the Nirimba Education Precinct.
Quakers Hill has become a fairly populated suburb, experiencing major growth in recent years. In 1991, the population was approximately 14,630 (1991 ABS Census) and in 1996, the population had grown by more than 4,000 people to 18,759 (1996 ABS Census). By 2006, the population of Quakers Hill had risen to 25,015. The 2016 ABS Census recorded a further increase to 27,080 people.
In the 2016 ABS Census, the majority of people from Quakers Hill were born in Australia (58.0%). The second top response was India (10.4%). Most people identified as having an Australian ancestry (19%), followed by English (18%).
Most people from Quakers Hill identified as Catholic in 2016 (30.3%), followed by No Religion (15.5%).
- Mel McLaughlin, Australian sports journalist
- Fabrice Lapierre, Australian long jumper
- Miracle, Australian hip hop artist
- Aaron Mooy, Australian footballer for the Socceroos and Huddersfield Town 
- Michael Clifford, Australian guitarist in the band 5 Seconds of Summer
- Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Quakers Hill (State Suburb)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 15 March 2018.
- RTA NSW. "Parramatta... a heritage of roads and transport". Retrieved 11 September 2016.
- Sharpe, Alan: Pictorial History - Blacktown & District, page 84-87. Kingsclear Books, 2000 ISBN 0-908272-64-2
- Sharpe, Alan: Pictorial History - Blacktown & District, page 87-89. Kingsclear Books, 2000 ISBN 0-908272-64-2
- Sharpe, Alan: Pictorial History - Blacktown & District, page 2,90. Kingsclear Books, 2000 ISBN 0-908272-64-2
- Glenda Kwek; Stephanie Gardiner; Saffron Howden; with AAP and Rachel Browne (18 November 2011). "A firefighter's worst nightmare' as multiple deaths confirmed after fire breaks out in nursing home". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 18 November 2011.
- "Case 06: Roger Dean - Casefile: True Crime Podcast". Casefile: True Crime Podcast. 13 February 2016. Retrieved 19 March 2018.
- "Nursing home tragedy claims 10th victim". smh.com.au. 26 November 2011. Retrieved 26 November 2011.
- "Further fire victims named - Strike Force Westall" (Press release). NSW Police Force. 30 November 2011.
- Browne, Rachel (19 November 2011). "Fatal fire:Male nurse refused bail on four counts of murder". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 19 November 2011. (Updated 20 November 2011)
- AAP (20 November 2011). "Quakers Hill nursing home fire claims sixth life". NineNews. NineMSN. Retrieved 20 November 2011.[permanent dead link]
- Dale, Amy (2 November 2012). "Accused Quakers Hill nursing home arsonist Roger Dean on 11 counts of murder charges in court". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 10 November 2012.
- "Roger Dean pleads guilty to murder over nursing home". The Sydney Morning Herald. 27 May 2013.
- "Life sentence won't ease victims' pain". 2 August 2013.
- "Big changes at Domain Principal Group". agedcareguide.com.au. 5 June 2014. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
- "Quakers Hill nursing home fire inquest: Owners should be held accountable, friends and relatives say". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 9 March 2015. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
...none of the information relating to the circumstance or termination of Dean's employment was ever communicated to anyone at Quaker Hill nursing home and no inquiries made. (Deputy coroner Dillon)
- "Quakers Hill Public School". NSW Department of Education. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
- "Barnier Public School". NSW Department of Education. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
- "Hambledon Public School". NSW Department of Education. Archived from the original on 22 July 2008. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
- "Quakers Hill High School". NSW Department of Education. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
- "Wyndham College". NSW Department of Education. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
- "Mary Immaculate Primary". Diocese of Parramatta. Archived from the original on 15 July 2008. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
- "Terra Sancta College". Diocese of Parramatta. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
- "Nirimba Education Precinct" (PDF). NSW Department of Education. Archived from the original (PDF) on 24 July 2008. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
- Australian Bureau of Statistics (25 October 2007). "Quakers Hill (State Suburb)". 2006 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
- "2016 Census QuickStats: Quakers Hill". quickstats.censusdata.abs.gov.au. Retrieved 27 October 2018.
- "'Sport running through her blood ': Mel McLaughlin steps into the 7 News nightly sports presenter role". 7News. 26 March 2016. Retrieved 27 March 2016.
- "'Didn't train, played video games all day'". 26 August 2015.
- Georgakopoulos, C (4 October 2013). "Quakers Hill midfielder Aaron Mooy optimistic about Western Sydney Wanderers' second A-League season". Daily Telegraph.
- Casefile True Crime Podcast - Case 06: Roger Dean - 13 February 2016
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