Strathfield, New South Wales

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Strathfield
SydneyNew South Wales
Strathfield Raw Square 1.JPG
Contemporary apartments in the commercial area
Map
Population25,813 (2016 census)[1]
 • Density3,928.9/km2 (10,176/sq mi)
Establishedc.1868
Postcode(s)2135
Area6.57 km2 (2.5 sq mi)
Location11.5 km (7 mi) west of Sydney CBD
LGA(s)
State electorate(s)Strathfield
Federal Division(s)
Suburbs around Strathfield:
Homebush West Homebush North Strathfield / Concord
Rookwood Strathfield Burwood
Belfield Strathfield South Enfield

Strathfield is a suburb in the Inner West of Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. It is located 12 kilometres west of the Sydney central business and is the administrative centre of the Municipality of Strathfield. A small section of the suburb north of the railway line lies within the City of Canada Bay, while the area east of The Boulevard lies within the Municipality of Burwood. North Strathfield and Strathfield South are separate suburbs to the north and south, respectively.

History[edit]

The Strathfield district lies between the Concord Plains to the north and the Cooks River to the south, and was originally occupied by the Wangal clan. European colonisation in present-day Strathfield commenced in 1793 with the issue of land grants in the area of "Liberty Plains", an area including present-day Strathfield as well as surrounding areas, where the first free settlers received land grants. In 1808, a grant was made to James Wilshire, which forms the largest part of the current suburb of Strathfield. This grant was bounded by present-day The Boulevarde, Chalmers Street and Liverpool Road.[2] Wiltshire's 1 square kilometre (0.39 sq mi) grant by Governor Macquarie in 1808 [regranted 1810] followed representations from Lord Nelson, a relation by marriage of Wilshire.

In the west, Wiltshire's grant neighboured an area that was granted in 1823 to the Church of England, to support clergy in the colony, which covered the western part of present-day Strathfield and Flemington (Homebush West). The church lands were sold in 1841[2]

Ownership of Wiltshire's grant 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 (Redmire) in North Yorkshire, England,[2] or could be named after the "red clay of the Strathfield area".[3]

Birth of Strathfield[edit]

On 31 October 1903 a subdivision of the Redmyre Estate was auctioned. The pamphlet shows it was billed as "The Railway Station Estate, Strathfield".

The railway came to Strathfield in 1855, with Homebush station built as one of the initial four stations on the railway line between Sydney and Parramatta. A station was sited here because of the presence of Homebush Racecourse north of Parramatta Road. The arrival of the railway spurred residential development. Subdivision of the "Redmire Estate" began in 1867, which led to residential development forming the village of "Redmire" or "Redmyre". 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'."[4][5] In 1877, development had progressed sufficiently to justify the addition of a halt on the railway line at Redmyre, east of existing Homebush station. The Village of Homebush Estate, part of which forms the northern part of today's Strathfield, was subdivided in 1878.

Strathfield Saye plaque

By 1885, sufficient numbers of people resided in the district to enable incorporation of its own local government. "Strathfield" as a geographical name was first established when Strathfield Council was proclaimed on 2 June 1885 by the Governor of NSW, Sir Augustus Loftus, after residents of the Redmire area petitioned the New South Wales State government for the establishment of local government.[6] The new local government area included parts of the three established residential areas of Redmire (now central Strathfield), Homebush (now Homebush South and northern Strathfield) and Druitt Town (now southern Strathfield). Residents in Homebush and Druitt Town formed their own unsuccessful counter-petition. It is likely that the region was named Strathfield to neutralise the rivalry between Homebush and Redmire.[7] The railway station was also renamed "Strathfield" in 1885, and it became an important interchange station when the Great Northern Railway was opened the following year, between Strathfield and Hornsby.

Strathfield Council[edit]

Strathfield Council was incorporated in 1885 and included parts of the then-established suburbs of Redmire, Homebush and Druitt Town. The part of Redmire incorporated into Strathfield Council included the central part of today's suburb of Strathfield, the part of Homebush incorporated into Strathfield included the southern part of today's suburb of Homebush as well as the northern part of today's Strathfield (Village of Homebush or Homebush South), and the part of Druitt Town incorporated into Strathfield included the southern part of today's Strathfield. In directories, addresses in all three areas were included under "Strathfield" after the council was established.

The adjoining areas of Flemington, North Homebush and southern Druitt Town was unincorporated. The southern part of Flemington was annexed to Strathfield Council in 1892 (now the southern part of Homebush West and the western part of Strathfield), 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.[8][9] Today's suburb of Strathfield encompasses the entire Council area as enlarged in 1892, except for a small area immediately to the south of Homebush and Flemington stations. When the separate Municipality of Homebush was amalgamated with Strathfield Council in 1947, the former village centres immediately south of Homebush and Flemington stations were carved out of Strathfield and joined with the east and west parts of Homebush Council areas respectively to create the modern suburbs of Homebush and Homebush West.

Meanwhile, the southern part of Druitt Town which was not incorporated into Strathfield became part of Enfield Council, then was amalgamated into Strathfield Council in 1949 and renamed "Strathfield South".

The eastern part of former Redmire - renamed Strathfield - became part of Burwood Council. The boundary between Strathfield and Burwood was a straight line running north-south aligned with the Boulevarde, and as a result there was a small portion to the north of Strathfield Council boundaries and west of Burwood Council boundaries that was not part of either council. This portion became part of Concord Council (later combined into the City of Canada Bay). This has resulted in the modern suburb of Strathfield being split between the three councils.

Residential and commercial development[edit]

The suburb of Strathfield became a popular residential suburb in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The building of Strathfield station, and its expansion into a major suburban, intercity and interstate station, with direct services to Sydney Central, Melbourne and Canberra, helped to make the suburb one of the most accessible in Sydney by rail. It was also close to major road and water transport routes. Members of Sydney's business elite, such as the family of William Arnott and David Jones, built various large homes in Strathfield. After federation, Strathfield continued to be favoured by business and political leaders, with prime ministers Earle Page, George Reid and Frank Forde all having lived in the suburb, and Billy Hughes lived in the part of "Strathfield" which is now Homebush South. Page, for example, chose to live in Strathfield because of its direct rail services to Melbourne, then the seat of federal parliament, and his electorate on the north coast of New South Wales.[10] Some of the large homes built in this period were purchased by private schools, and the unusually large number of private and public schools in the one suburb further increased residential demand.

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. Strathfield underwent suburban subdivision in the early 20th century, with more suburban houses on smaller lots being built rather than the substantial mansions with expansive grounds built in the earlier period. Nevertheless, it remained a popular residential area. In 1977, Strathfield was the most expensive suburb in metropolitan Sydney measured by median house price.[11]

More significant commercial development took place in the last quarter of the 20th century, with a "modern" shopping centre, Strathfield Plaza, opening in 1981, accompanied by the first high rise residential apartment building in the suburb. More towers followed in the next few decades, concentrated around the station.

Strathfield Murders[edit]

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. A Memorial plaque is located at Churchill Avenue, Strathfield.

Heritage listings[edit]

Strathfield has a number of heritage-listed sites, including:

Schools[edit]

Strathfield has an unusually large concentration of educational institutions in one suburb.

The government schools located in Strathfield include the two secondary schools Strathfield Girls High School and Strathfield South High School. The catchment of Strathfield Girls stretches north to Concord West, west to Homebush West and east to the western part of Burwood, but does not include the southern-most section of the suburb of Strathfield itself. Strathfield South High School is co-educational, and its catchment includes the southern-most section of Strathfield, as well as the suburbs further south including parts of Chullora and Greenacre, Belfield, Strathfield South, Enfield and Croydon Park. A boys' high school is located in nearby Homebush.

Two government comprehensive primary schools are located in Strathfield, Marie Bashir Public School in north-central Strathfield and Strathfield South Public School. Two others are located nearby to the north: Homebush Public School in Homebush, which also serves the northernmost part of Strathfield, and Strathfield North Public School in the separate suburb of North Strathfield. Chalmers Road Public School, also located in Strathfield, is a state government school for students aged four to eighteen years with moderate or severe intellectual disabilities.

A large number of independent or church-affiliated schools are also located in Strathfield. These include:

Strathfield is also home to a major campus of the Australian Catholic University, the former home of the Christian Brothers novitiate and Catholic Teachers' College. The Seminary of the Good Shepherd, which trains Catholic priests, straddles the boundary between Strathfield and Homebush. In addition, the Catholic Institute of Sydney, where priests for the Archdiocese of Sydney, and other theologians and ministers, are trained, is located in Strathfield, on a site which was originally the NSW Society for the Blind, and later an Australia Post training centre. Nearby, 'Arnottholme', the former home of William Arnott, is used by the NSW Department of Education, including as a training facility for teachers.

Churches[edit]

  • Carrington Avenue Uniting Church
  • St Anne's Anglican Church
  • St David's Presbyterian Church
  • St Martha's Catholic Church[18]
  • 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
  • Western Sydney Chinese Christian Church

Residential landscape[edit]

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.[citation needed] One of the oldest surviving houses built in the 1870s is Fairholm which is now a retirement village called Strathfield Gardens.

Primarily these have been replaced by modern, multimillion-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.

The "Golden Mile" in Strathfield refers to a pocket within the suburb that houses some of the most desirable and highly sought-after real estate in the area.[19] The Golden Mile is bounded by Hunter Street, Carrington Avenue, Homebush Road and The Boulevarde. Examples of prestigious addresses include homes located on Cotswold Road,[20] Strathfield Avenue,[21] Llandilo Avenue, Agnes[22] and Highgate Street.

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 became independent school campuses:

Commercial area and transport[edit]

The Boulevarde

Strathfield is known as a regional centre for education. Strathfield's commercial town centre is centred on a town square south of the station, and includes the Strathfield Plaza shopping centre which includes Woolworths and other stores, as well as a large number of cafes, restaurants and other stores located around the square and along Albert Road, Churchill Avenue, Redmyre Road and the Boulevarde. Strathfield's town centre is particularly known for a large concentration of Korean restaurants and shops catering to Korean cultural needs. Other commercial areas in the suburb include a small commercial area immediately north of the station, a commercial area along the southern boundary concentrated around the intersection of the Boulevarde and Liverpool Road, and some car dealerships along Parramatta Road on the northern boundary.

Strathfield railway station is a major interchange on the Sydney Trains and NSW TrainLink networks, and has long been an interchange for several of Sydney's suburban lines, as well as intercity services and interstate services. However, intercity services from Strathfield significantly reduced in 2013. With the upgrading of the East Hills line, intercity trains heading southwest to Canberra and Melbourne from Sydney Central began to use that line, leaving only intercity trains to the north and west to continue using Strathfield station.[33] The bus station located on the town square, immediately south of the station, is an interchange for buses serving the Inner West.

In the west, Strathfield is bounded by the A3 arterial road, linking Strathfield with the St George region, where it joins the A1 road (Princes Highway) towards Sutherland Shire and the south coast, while in the north it connects Strathfield with Ryde and Pymble and Gordon, where it intersects with the A1 road again and then proceeds towards the Northern Beaches.

Strathfield is bounded in the north by the Great Western Highway (Parramatta Road) and in the south by the Hume Highway (Liverpool Road), both major arterial roads. The Great Western Highway links Strathfield east to Ashfield, where it splits with Parramatta Road proceeding to east towards Brodaway and the southern City and the A4 road proceeding northeast to the Sydney CBD and Sydney Harbour Bridge. To the west, it leads to Parramatta, Blacktown, Penrith and beyond. The Hume Highway links Strathfield east to Ashfield, where it joins Parramatta Road, and west to Bankstown, Liverpool, Canberra and Melbourne. The M4 Western Motorway largely parallels the Great Western Highway but lies outside Strathfield suburb boundaries. The exit at Concord Road in North Strathfield serves Strathfield.

Two local arterial routes serving the Inner West, formed by Concord Road-Raw Square-The Boulevarde (north-south) and Beresford Road-Albert Road-Redmyre Road-Morwick Street (west-east), join and intersect in central Strathfield in a complex pattern.

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
YearPop.±%
200120,567—    
200620,481−0.4%
201123,639+15.4%
201625,813+9.2%

According to the 2016 census, Strathfield had a total population of 25,813 people. 34.6% of people were born in Australia. The most common other countries of birth were China 10.3%, India 10.1%, South Korea 9.8%, Nepal 5.3% and Vietnam 2.7%. The most common ancestries were Chinese 19.6%, Indian 10.0%, Korean 9.9%, English 7.4% and Australian 6.9% with 75.6% of people having both parents born overseas.

29.1% of people only spoke English at home. Other languages spoken at home included Korean 10.9%, Mandarin 10.6%, Cantonese 7.6%, Nepali 5.3% and Tamil 4.0%. The most common responses for religion were No Religion 23.3%, Catholic 23.1% and Hinduism 16.2%.[1]

Residents[edit]

The following were either born or have lived at some time in the suburb of Strathfield:

Architecture[edit]

  • 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).[34]
    The Strathfield Catholic Institute was built in 1891 as the Institute for Blind Women and designed by Harry Kent
  • Harry Kent (1852–1938), architect, alderman for the Municipality of Strathfield and architect of the Strathfield Town Hall.

Business[edit]

Fashion and society[edit]

Law[edit]

Medicine[edit]

Politics[edit]

Religion[edit]

Science[edit]

Entertainment[edit]

  • Bang Chan, member and leader of the South Korean boy band Stray Kids, lived in Strathfield for some time during his teenage years.

Sport[edit]

Other people[edit]

Culture[edit]

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.

Gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Strathfield (State Suburb)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 5 November 2017. Edit this at Wikidata
  2. ^ a b c d "Strathfield Railway Station group". New South Wales State Heritage Register. Office of Environment and Heritage. H01252. Retrieved 2 June 2018.
  3. ^ Jones, Michael (1985). Oasis in the West: Strathfield's first hundred years. North Sydney: Allen & Unwin Australia. ISBN 0-86861-407-6.
  4. ^ Jones, Cathy (2004). Strathfield – origin of the name Archived 18 October 2009 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 4 October 2004.
  5. ^ Jones, Cathy [2005], A [very] short history of Strathfield, Strathfield District Historical Society Newsletter.
  6. ^ Jones, Cathy. "Origin of the name of Strathfield". Strathfield Heritage Website. Archived from the original on 14 April 2014. Retrieved 11 May 2014.
  7. ^ Strathfield Heritage, "Stories and Myths about Strathfield"
  8. ^ Reps, John W. Fitgerald, Critique of Capital City Plans Archived 6 September 2010 at the Wayback Machine. Cornell University.
  9. ^ Fitzgerald, John Daniel (27 July 1912). The Capital plans, the city of the future. The Sydney Morning Herald.
  10. ^ National Archives of Australia, "Earle Page biography"
  11. ^ Domain, What Sydney prices looked like 40 years ago when Bankstown was more expensive than Leichhardt
  12. ^ "Mount St Mary Campus of the Australian Catholic University". New South Wales State Heritage Register. Office of Environment and Heritage. H01965. Retrieved 8 February 2019.
  13. ^ "Strathfield rail underbridges (flyover)". New South Wales State Heritage Register. Office of Environment and Heritage. H01055. Retrieved 18 May 2018.
  14. ^ "Trinity Uniting Church". New South Wales State Heritage Register. Office of Environment and Heritage. H01671. Retrieved 18 May 2018.
  15. ^ "Trinity Gramma School". Archived from the original on 28 June 2015. Retrieved 12 June 2015.
  16. ^ "Australian School Choice- St Patrick's College". Archived from the original on 5 May 2007. Retrieved 27 June 2007.
  17. ^ "Trinity Grammar School". Schools. Australian Boarding Schools' Association. 2007. Archived from the original on 17 November 2007. Retrieved 24 January 2008.
  18. ^ D. Gleeson, Monsignor Peter Byrne and the foundations of Catholicism in Strathfield, Journal of the Australian Catholic Historical Society 35 (2014) Archived 15 February 2017 at the Wayback Machine, 38–50.
  19. ^ "Strathfield – The Golden Mile". Archived from the original on 15 June 2015. Retrieved 12 June 2015.
  20. ^ "Cotswold Road, The Golden Mile, Strathfield". Archived from the original on 14 June 2015. Retrieved 12 June 2015.
  21. ^ "Stratfield Avenue – The Golden Mile". Archived from the original on 14 June 2015. Retrieved 12 June 2015.
  22. ^ "Agnes Street – The Golden Mile". Archived from the original on 14 June 2015. Retrieved 12 June 2015.
  23. ^ "'Brunyarra' The Boulevarde Strathfield". strathfieldhistory.org. 23 January 2011. Retrieved 13 April 2018.
  24. ^ "'Lauriston' The Boulevarde". strathfieldhistory.org. 25 January 2011. Retrieved 13 April 2018.
  25. ^ a b c "Schools". strathfieldhistory.org. 2 September 2009. Archived from the original on 5 February 2011. Retrieved 13 April 2018.
  26. ^ "'Somerset' The Boulevarde Stratfield". strathfieldhistory.org. 2 September 2009. Archived from the original on 5 February 2011. Retrieved 13 April 2018.
  27. ^ Review of Environmental Factors – Meriden Strathfield, NSW Archived 5 May 2019 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved 6 May 2019.
  28. ^ Foster, A. G. (Arthur G.) (1920), Meriden, Church of England school for girls, Redmyre Road, Strathfield, N.S.W, retrieved 6 May 2019
  29. ^ Foster, A. G. (Arthur G.) (1920), Exterior view of Meriden Annexe, Strathfield, retrieved 6 May 2019
  30. ^ "WEDDINGS Earwaker—Woolnough". Queensland Figaro. XXXIII (51). Queensland, Australia. 24 December 1927. p. 12. Retrieved 6 May 2019 – via National Library of Australia.
  31. ^ Strathfield Heritage – All about the history and heritage of Strathfield Archived 2 April 2019 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved 6 May 2019.
  32. ^ Wadham Preparatory School, Strathfield Heritage Retrieved 6 May 2019.
  33. ^ Goulburn Post, "Times are a changing", 2013-05-24
  34. ^ [1] Archived 23 July 2012 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved 28 August 2012
  35. ^ Mander-Jones, Phyllis. Australian Dictionary of Biography. National Centre of Biography, Australian National University. Archived from the original on 7 December 2013. Retrieved 13 April 2018 – via Australian Dictionary of Biography.
  36. ^ "Holyrood | NSW Environment, Energy and Science". www.environment.nsw.gov.au. Retrieved 27 May 2020.
  37. ^ "Santa Sabina College – Holyrood". Strathfield Heritage. 3 October 2009. Retrieved 27 May 2020.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 33°52′51″S 151°04′59″E / 33.88081°S 151.08308°E / -33.88081; 151.08308