Strathfield, New South Wales

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SydneyNew South Wales
File:Strathfield Raw Square 1.JPG
Contemporary apartments in the commercial area
Population 23,639 (2011 census)[1]
Established c.1868
Postcode(s) 2135
Location 14 km (9 mi) west of Sydney CBD
LGA(s) Strathfield Council, City of Canada Bay, Burwood Council
State electorate(s) Strathfield
Federal Division(s) Reid, Watson
Suburbs around Strathfield:
Homebush North Strathfield Concord
Rookwood Strathfield Burwood
Belfield Strathfield South Enfield

Strathfield is a suburb in the Inner West[2] 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.


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.[3] In 1885, Strathfield Council was incorporated.

Birth of Strathfield

File:Strathfield railway station estate.jpg
On 31 October 1903 a subdivision of the Redmyre Estate was auctioned. The pamphlet shows it was billed as "The Railway Station Estate, 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".[4] 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'."[5][6]

Strathfield Saye Plaque

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.[citation needed]

Strathfield Council

File:Strathfield LGA Town Hal c.1915l.jpg
Strathfield council chambers (c. 1915)
Strathfield Council Chambers present day

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.[7][8] 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.[citation needed]

Modern history

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

Independent schools

Trinity Grammar 1930

State schools

File:Santa Sabina College 1.JPG
Santa Sabina College
  • Strathfield Girls High
  • Strathfield South High School
  • Chalmers Road Public School (state government school for students aged four to eighteen years with moderate or severe intellectual disabilities)
  • Marie Bashir Public School

Tertiary institutions


  • 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

Residential landscape

File:Strathfield Glen Luna.JPG
Glen Luna in Carrington Street,
has become apartments

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.[12] 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,[13] Strathfield Avenue,[14] Llandilo Avenue, Agnes[15] 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 have become private schools:

Commercial area and transport

Strathfield is known as a regional centre for education. 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. This role will be enhanced by the Parramatta Light Rail project, announced in 2015. Strathfield will be the terminus of a line to Westmead via Sydney Olympic Park.[20]

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 2011 census, Strathfield had a total population of 23,639 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 62.6% of people were born overseas, with migrants born in China (9.8%), South Korea (9.0%), India (8.1%), Nepal (3.8%) and Sri Lanka (2.4%). Only 16% of residents had Australian parents. Overall, common stated ancestries include Chinese (18.9%), Korean (9.3%), Australian (8.6%), Indian (8.2%) and English (7.3%).[1]


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



Fashion and society








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.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Australian Bureau of Statistics (31 October 2012). "Strathfield (State Suburb)". 2011 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 14 December 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. Australian Suburb Guide: Sydney Inner West Retrieved 7 August 2013.
  3. Jones, Cathy. "Origin of the name of Strathfield". Strathfield Heritage Website. Retrieved 11 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. Jones, Michael (1985). Oasis in the West: Strathfield's first hundred years. North Sydney: Allen & Unwin Australia. ISBN 0-86861-407-6.
  5. Jones, Cathy (2004). Strathfield – origin of the name. Retrieved 4 October 2004.
  6. Jones, Cathy [2005], A [very] short history of Strathfield, Strathfield District Historical Society Newsletter.
  7. Reps, John W. Fitgerald, Critique of Capital City Plans. Cornell University.
  8. Fitzgerald, John Daniel (27 July 1912). The Capital plans, the city of the future. The Sydney Morning Herald.
  9. "Trinity Gramma School".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. "Australian School Choice- St Patrick's College". Retrieved 27 June 2007.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  11. "Trinity Grammar School". Schools. Australian Boarding Schools' Association. 2007. Archived from the original on 17 November 2007. Retrieved 24 January 2008.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  12. "Strathfield - The Golden Mile".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  13. "Cotswold Road, The Golden Mile, Strathfield".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  14. "Stratfield Avenue - The Golden Mile".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  15. "Agnes Street - The Golden Mile".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  16. Strathfield History – Brunyarra
  17. Strahfield History – Lauriston
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 Strathfield History – Schools
  19. Strathfield History – Somerset
  20. "Parramatta Light Rail - How the preferred network was chosen". Transport for NSW. Retrieved 8 December 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  21. [1] Retrieved 28 August 2012

External links

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