HurstvilleLocated 16 kilometres south of the Sydney CBD in the St George area, the suburb of Hurstville is the administrative centre of the local government area of the Georges River Council. Hurstville has become a central business district for the southern suburbs of Sydney. It is a large, multiethnic suburb with a multitude of commercial buildings and high-rise residential buildings dominating the skyline.
The commercial area is centred on the main street, Forest Road, on the northern side of Hurstville Railway station. Forest Road is the main shopping street which features branches of many retail shops as well as numerous banks and other financial institutions. The commercial developments also extend to surrounding streets concentrated from Queens Road to The Avenue and on the southern side of Hurstville Railway station, around Ormonde Parade. The commercial developments extend further along Forest Road, west towards Penshurst and east towards Bexley.
Hurstville has two major shopping centres, Westfield Hurstville and Hurstville Central. There are also a few smaller shopping strips such as Hurstville Times Plaza, East Quarter, Union Arcade and Hurstville Arcade (formerly Jolleys Arcade and Woolworths Arcade).
The administrative offices of the City of Hurstville are located in the Hurstville Civic Centre in MacMahon Street. This street also features a number of historic buildings such as the Friendly Pharmacy, old Fire Station, Ritz Hotel and the St George Regional Museum, which houses the cake decorating collection formerly held at the Australian Cakes and Sugar Art Museum. Hurstville City Library is located nearby on Queens Road. Hurstville's residential developments are a mixture of low-density housing, medium-density flats, and high-density apartment buildings.
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Allawah is a neighbouring suburb, located one station up the line towards the city of Sydney on the Cronulla-Sutherland railway line. Allawah has an an Aboriginal name meaning 'make your abode here' - said to be a name used by an Aboriginal tribe living around Botany Bay. Since it was first opened up to development by European timbergetters in the 1840s, the land on which Allawah was later built remained an area of cleared forest until the 1890s when the railway came through. Allawah station was not built, however, until October 1925 when the local population had grown to such a degree that a station was deemed necessary between Carlton and Hurstville.
Carlton is a suburb in southern Sydney, located to the east of Hurstville. Up until the arrival of the railway in 1884, Carlton was a patchwork of farms on land cleared of forest some decades earlier. The train did not stop at Carlton and in order to make it happen, the developers offered free blocks of land here to everyone who donated 400 pounds towards the cost of building a platform and station buildings. It was this "generous offer" of free land that prompted the use of the name Carlton, the name of their development estate. The name recalls a suburb of Nottingham in England meaning "a village of free men". The settlement got its station in 1889. By the turn of the century it had developed into a desirable residential area. Carlton has a railway station on the Sutherland-Cronulla railway line.
South Hurstville is a suburb in southern Sydney, located 18 kilometres south of the Sydney central business district. It is part of the St George area. South Hurstville is in the local government area of the Georges River Council. Hurstville and Hurstville Grove are separate neighbouring suburbs. Connells Point and Kyle Bay are also neighbours, and front the Georges River. South Hurstville is a mainly residential area with a few commercial developments, most of which are located on King Georges Road.
Quarry Reserve, Hurstville Grove
Hurstville Grove, located immediately to the west of South Hurstville, stretches from Hillcrest Avenue to the shore of Oatley Bay, on the Georges River. It is mainly residential with a few shops located on Hillcrest Avenue. Hurstville Grove is located 19 kilometres south of the Sydney central business district and is part of the local government area of the Georges River Council, in the St George area.
Hurstville grove is a small, established prestige suburb predominately of free standing houses on large blocks of land. The suburb shares a similar lifestyle of park, water and reserve with neighboring suburbs like Blakehurst, Kyle Bay, Connell Points and Oatley. It has boat ramps, boating facilities and water access to botany bay and Sydney Harbours. Bicycle tracks and Bush walk tracks are part of Hurstville Grove lifestyle.
Kyle Bay, on the west side of Blakehurst, takes its name from Robert Kyle, who lived on the bay. Kyle was a local shipbuilder in the 1870s. The land around Kyle Bay was originally granted by the Crown to Robert Kyle and James Merriman in November 1853. Kyle Parade and Merriman Street are named in their honour. The area was subdivided for residential development in the late 1950s. At the head of Kyle Bay is a small sandy beach backed by a pleasant park.
Kyle Bay is surrounded by the suburbs of Blakehurst, South Hurstville and Connells Point. Kangaroo Point sits on the opposite bank of the Georges River. It is 7 km west of Botany Bay and 12 km north-west of the Cronulla surfing beaches. This leafy suburb is graced with scenic riverside parks and reserves including Merriman Reserve and Donnelly Reserve. Kyle Bay and Harness Cask Point are natural formations.
Legacy House is a historic estate on the eastern shore of Kyle Bay. It was bequest to children and first operated from 1948 to 1983 as a convalescent home for children. It was then taken over by Legacy as a home for the children of servicemen/women who have either lost their parents or whose parents were unable to care for them.
The suburb that takes its name from the bay is one of Sydney's smallest. In terms of area, Huntleys Point, with five streets and Rushcutters Bay with 10 streets are slightly larger than Holroyd, which for many years had no streets at all - it consisted only of a brickworks, though it is had been the name of the Local Government Council for some time previous. Fourth is the similarly sized Kyle Bay (nine streets), then Kangaroo Point (eight streets) and Canada Bay (13 streets). Breakfast Point has only three streets but it is larger in area than all of the above suburbs, as it is a big industrial site.
Kyle Bay has a connection to the Moran family, an infamous Melbourne-based criminal family of Irish ancestry, notable for their involvement in the Melbourne gangland killings. The family's activities are the primary plot of the controversial television series Underbelly. Family matriarch Judy Moran lost two sons, Jason and Mark, estranged husband Lewis, and brother-in-law Des to an underworld feud that resulted in the deaths of over 30 criminals. Judy Moran was first married to Leslie John Cole, who was shot dead in Boronia Street, Kyle Bay, during a gangland conflict on 10 November 1982. Judy Moran was divorced from Cole at the time of his death and had begun a relationship with Lewis Moran. Though she legally assumed the surname of Moran, she and Lewis Moran were never married.
The suburb of Penshurst in southern Sydney is located 17 kilometres south of the Sydney central business district and is part of the St George area. Penshurst features low to medium-density housing. It has a predominantly older population however it is increasingly being populated by a new generation of migrant families who are attracted by its proximity to Hurstville. Penshurst is one of Sydney South's desirable suburbs situated in the St George region neighbouring Oatley, Mortdale and Hurstville. The suburb has a great mix of medium and low density properties and is most famously known for its's exclusive MacRae's Estate which is home to affluent, desirable homes.
Quarry Reserve in Hurstville Road, Hurstville, occupied the site of a former sandstone quarry. The reserve occupies land surrounding the upper reaches of Poulton Creek, which flow through the park into Poulton Park, before discharging into Kogarah Bay. The northern section is today little more than a pathway with the fenced off quarry site on one side and the channel carrying what was once Poulton Creek on the other.
The southern section consists of a large sports field with a cricket pitch and practice cricket nets. A pathway through a strip of bushland leads from the reserve into Poulton Park.
The Bee Gees: Robin Gibb, Barry Gibb, Maurice Gibb; front: Vince Melouney and Colin Petersen
Many of Australia's earliest rock'n'roll hits were recorded at St. Clair Recording Studio, 56 Queens Road, Hurstville. Located behind a butcher's shop, the studio was operated by Oswald Russell (Ossie) Byrne. Ossie also had a home studio in Tarrawanna at Wollongong. Like Sam Phillips' fabled Sun Studio in Memphis c.1954, St. Clair featured two mono recorders. The Bee Gees recorded all their early work there including the hit 'Spicks And Specs', recorded there in 1965. The famous 1960s Australian TV show, Bandstand, had its music backing tracks recorded at St. Clair in 1966. Other artists to record at St Clair included The Twilights, MPD Ltd., and Ronnie Burns. When Byrne moved to England with the Bee Gees, Warren Morton took over the studio for a few months until it closed in late 1966. The butchers shop and studio were demolished in the 1970s.
Triple Formula One Racing Champion Jack Brabham was one of Hurstville'as most famous sons. Brabham was born on April, 2, 1926, and grew up in Laycock Road, Penshurst, the son of a greengrocer. He went to Hurstville Boys High School and left school at 15 to work in a garage. He later lived in Sylvania for many years. He first got behind the wheel of his father's delivery van when he was 12, and enjoyed driving, but did not catch the raqcing bug at that time. At the age of 15 he left school to work, combining a job at a local garage with an evening course in mechanical engineering. Brabham soon branched out into his own business selling motorbikes, which he bought and repaired for sale, using his parents' back verandah as his workshop.
After two years in the RAAF as a wartime flight mechanic, Brabham began racing cars in 1947 aged 21 and rest is history. His career and life included 14 Grand Prix victories, 13 pole positions and he contested 126 Grand Prix from in 1955 to 1970. The world s oldest surviving Formula One race winner and world champion when he died in May 2014, age 88, he became the first man in history to be knighted for services to motorsport and, in 2012, was named one of Australia's National Living Treasures. Jack Brabham Drive, Hurstville, was named in his honour.
Railway Square, Hurstville
The name Hurstville is derived from the English 'hurst', meaning 'a wooded eminence', and 'ville', meaning 'town'.
Although it is unknown when they first settled in the Hurstville area, the first inhabitants were Indigenous Australians. At the time of the arrival of the First Fleet, the Indigenous Australians residing in the area were of the Eora tribe, whose numbers spanned along the Georges River, from Botany Bay to present-day Liverpool.
The first sustained contact between members of the First Fleet and the Eora tribe, occurred on 20 January 1788 within the boundaries of the present City of Hurstville at Lugarno and Oatley, at Lime Kiln Bay on the Georges River, as recorded by Lieutenant Philip Gidley King in his diary. While Governor Philip explored the south side of the Georges River around Como, King with a party of one other officer and three marines in a six-oared rowboat aimed for the highest point they could see on the north side, probably at Lugarno, and landed at a place they named Lance Point. Although first contact with the Indigenous Australians led to a small altercation where a spear was thrown and a shot fired, later in the day when the party rowed up Lime Kiln Bay towards present day Mortdale they were greeted in a friendly manner by both men and women, and what could only be described as Australia's first picnic took place as food and drink were shared between the two peoples. After a long summer afternoon of mutual contact and conviviality the British sailors rowed back to their ship moored at Botany Bay.
The land of the Hurstville region was granted by the government of the new colony of New South Wales to two men: Captain John Townson and his brother Robert Townson in 1808. Captain John Townson was granted 1950 acres (7.9 km2) of land which is now occupied by the suburb of Hurstville and part of Bexley. Robert Townson was granted the land which is now occupied by Penshurst, Mortdale and parts of Peakhurst. In the same year, in the area now known as Riverwood land grants were made to Jane Trotter, Mary Shepley, Charles Doudall, and James Ryan. Later in 1816 another land grant in the same area was given to Mary Redman.
In 1809, Captain John Townson was granted an additional 250 acres (1 km2) in the area now occupied by Kingsgrove and Beverly Hills. The Townson brothers were not happy with the land that they were given because it was not suitable for the farming of sheep for wool and it is likely that the brothers never occupied their land. In 1812, a wealthy merchant named Simeon Lord bought the land of Captain John Townson and named it Lord's Forest. When Lord died, the land became the property of John Rose Holden and James Holt of the Bank of NSW.
A dam with a roadway on top was constructed on the Cooks River at Tempe in 1839. In 1843, the road that was to become known as Forest Road was extended from the dam to a hand-winched punt in Lugarno. On the other side of the river, the road continued all the way to Wollongong; however, it was only suitable for travellers on horseback. The new road opened up the Hurstville region and created a settlement at Bottle Forest, now known as Heathcote.
In 1850, the Lord Forest estate was purchased by Michael Gannon (1800 61), who subdivided it into small farms along what is now Croydon Road and three larger farms that were purchased by Dent, Peake, and Ibbotson. The area became known as Gannon's Forest. The land originally granted to Robert Townson was purchased by John Connell in 1830 and, following his death in 1849, the estate was inherited by his grandsons, Elias Pearson Laycock and John Connell Laycock.
The Gannon's Forest post office opened in 1881. The local school was named "Hurstville" by School Inspector MacIntyre when it was established in 1876. When the railway station opened on 15 October 1884, it took the name Hurstville, from the school. Hurstville municipality was incorporated in 1887 and, in 1988, Hurstville was declared a city. The Centenary Bakery on Forest Road is a historic building that has been preserved and once housed a museum. The St George Regional Museum is now located in another historic building in MacMahon Street.