The Ford Motor Company of Canada assembly plant was first established in NSW at Sandown on the river near Parramatta. In 1935, they shifted their New South Wales operations to a new car manufacturing and assembly plant at 350-374 Parramatta Road, Homebush.
The factory was designed by architects Stephenson, Meldrum and Turner. The factory was formally opened on 31 March 1936 and reported in the Sydney Morning Herald that:
“The new Ford factory at Homebush will be opened to-day. Members of the company and dealers have arrived in Sydney from all parts of the State for the ceremony. The day’s programme includes a conference, a tour of the factory, and the screening in the factory picture theatre of the film, “The Ford Year.” Later each dealer will drive away In a car assembled at the factory. A dinner will be held at the Hotel Australia In the evening, when Mr. H. C. French, director and general manager, will be farewelled prior to his departure for England and Canada”.
The Ford plant operated 24 hours a day and employed around 1200 workers on split shifts. The Ford plant was a large local employer in Homebush and surrounding suburbs. Many homes in the adjacent Telepea Avenue were built by Ford for employees. These have since been sold and are privately owned.
In 1992, the council boundaries were altered and this site was transferred from Auburn Council to Strathfield Council. The factory closed in September 1994. It has since been developed into a business park.
The Former Ford Factory building (brick facade) is heritage listed.
Author: Cathy Jones 2011, updated 2017