Foreword from A Grand Type of Citizen

Alan A. Hyam
OAM, Barrister-at-Law,

I am indeed privileged and humbled to be included amongst the “Grand type of Citizens” whose civic terms of office and obituaries are so faithfully recorded by Shayne Bray in this fine book. I have been greatly honoured to be invited to write this foreword.

Unlike most other local government areas in this State, and indeed in Australia, the City of Parramatta has sadly lacked a publication of this nature, which accurately lists those who have served in high civic office in the “Cradle City of Australia”, and which is now also known as the “Second Central Business District” in the Sydney Region.

Parramatta City Council was once described, by a former Alderman and Deputy Premier, as “the best political training ground in this State”. Because of the diversity of development which is contained within the City boundaries, the unique location of Parramatta near the geographic and demographic centers of the Sydney Region, the hub of the largest private bus network in Australia, and the wide cross section of its citizens, any persons who has held civic office in this City would have been called upon to unselfishly give of large amounts of their time, in a voluntary and non financially rewarded capacity. They would have been called upon to bring their experiences of life, and their knowledge and learning to bear on the discharge of their, often, onerous duties. Unfortunately, there is no formal training for holders of high civic office who must learn on the job, with the assistance and advice of their colleagues, and the fine officers in the Council service. In my own experience, Parramatta City Council has been well served, over the years, by its Aldermen, Councillors, Mayors, Lord Mayors, who have been most ably assisted and guided by the very able and faithful Town Clerks, General Managers, Chief Executive Officers, and their efficient and dedicated staffs.

Shayne Bray has succeeded in his task of researching and gathering the material contained in this book, which I know has been arduous and time consuming. His work has resulted in comprehensive, clear, but concise information concerning the former Mayors of this great City, which will be of great interest and assistance to historians and those who have an interest and high regard for the holders of high civic office. I trust that this publication will be but a first edition, which will be regularly updated and expanded over future years.


Cover of "A Grand Type of Citizen"

Cover of “A Grand Type of Citizen”

A Compiler’s Note – A Grand Type of Citizen

In 1858 legislation was passed to enable Municipal Councils to be formed in the Colony of New South Wales. With their formation, responsible local government had come to the colony and they direct predecessors of our modern local councils. Previous to this date District Councils had been formed but they were largely unsuccessful in undertaking the functions for which they were originally created. What concerns us here are the elected leaders of the Municipal, or Borough, Council (later City Council) of Parramatta, beginning with the December 1961 elections. Apart from the 1911 Jubilee History and a series of books published by the Parramatta Council after 1938, principally to advertise the scenic and commercial importance of Parramatta, there is to my knowledge, no comprehensive treatment of the mayors and lord mayors in one volume. This present work attempts to redress this imbalance. I make no apologies for the fact that this work came about to satisfy my own need for this information to be readily at hand and is in no way a complete family history (or even work of history) of the worthies therein. My wish is this volume may be come a stepping off point and an encouragement for others to investigate more deeply the deeds and lives of those who have helped to shape the Parramatta of today.


From Mayor to Lord Mayor

In 1988, Nick Greiner Premier of NSW, received a message through the Governor of NSW, from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, dignifying the position of Mayor to Lord Mayor in recognition of Parramatta’s Bi-Centennial.




Parramatta Mayors Remembered

  • Barry Wilde Bridge – named in acknowledgement of Barry Charles Wilde, Mayor 1967 – 1974.
  • Bowden Street – (c1856) initially named George Street, it was renamed to avoid confusion and appears to be an acknowledgement of Thomas Wheaton Bowden, Mayor in 1868.
  • The Byrnes Room – Town Hall, Parramatta, named in acknowledgement of Charles Joseph Byrnes, Mayor from 1875 – 1881, 1886 – 1888, 1892 – 1893 and 1895.
  • Byrnes Street, North Parramatta – appears to be an acknowledgement of James Byrnes, Mayor from 1862 Feb. – 1865 and Charles Joseph Byrnes, Mayor from 1875 – 1881, 1886 – 1888, 1892 – 1893 and 1895.
  • Tablet to the memory of James Byrnes – this memorial tablet is on the wall of the Leigh Memorial Church in Macquarie Street, Parramatta and acknowledges James Byrnes, Mayor 1862 – 1865.
  • Collett Parade – (1947) named by the Housing Commission of NSW as an acknowledgement to Arthur Henry Collett, Mayor from 1912 – 1913 and 1928 – 1930.
  • Collett Park – see above.
  • Cox Park, Carlingford – appears to be an acknowledgement of Frederick Charles Cox, Mayor in 1884.
  • Ferris Street, North Parramatta – appears to be an acknowledgement of William John Ferris, Mayor in 1890 and 1896.
  • Frank Beames Lane – named in acknowledgement of Frank Beames, Mayor in 1889 and 1891. (The laneway name was switched with Les Burnett Lane in 1993).
  • Horwood Place – named after Hedley Victor Horwood, Mayor 1954 – 1955.
  • Hunt Street, North Parramatta – appears to be an acknowledgement of Edward Allan Hunt, Mayor 1956 – 1957.
  • Irwin Street, North Parramatta – appears to be an acknowledgement of William John Irwin, Mayor 1938 – 1939.
  • P. H. Jeffery Reserve – named after Phillip Henry Jeffery, Mayor in 1940.
  • Jeffery Street, North Parramatta – see above.
  • Keith McKinnon Park, Ermington – named after Keith John McKinnon, Mayor in 1979.
  • Dan Mahoney Reserve – named in acknowledgement of Daniel John Mahoney, Mayor in 1958.
  • Eric Mobbs Memorial Park and Recreational Reserve, Carlingford – named after Eric Arthur Mobbs, Mayor form 1949 – 1953 and 1959.
  • Moxham Street, North Parramatta – appears to be an acknowledgement of Thomas R. Moxham, Mayor 1897 – 1900.
  • Noller Parade – (c1947) named by the Housing Commission of New South Wales as an acknowledgement to William Peter Noller, Mayor from 1901 – 1908 and 1924 – 1927.
  • Noller Park – see above.
  • Robin Thomas Reserve – named in acknowledgement of Alfred Robert Cayley Thomas (known as Robin), Mayor from 1960 – 1961 and 1965.
  • Saunders Street, North Parramatta – appears to be an acknowledgement of John Saunders, Mayor in 1907.
  • Symonds Avenue – (1947) named as an acknowledgement to Harold Mervyn Symonds, Mayor 1947 – 1948.
  • Symonds Avenue Reserve – see above.
  • ARC Thomas Clock – once on display in Civic Place was donated to the citizens of Parramatta by Alfred Robert Cayley Thomas – Mayor form 1960 – 1961 and 1965
  • Wilde Avenue – named in acknowledgement of Barry Charles Wilde, Mayor 1967 – 1974