Enfield Council Chambers

by Cathy Jones

Enfield Town Hall
Enfield Town Hall

The Council of the Municipality of Enfield was incorporated in 1889 and abolished in 1949.

The former Enfield Council Chambers were built in 1930 on Liverpool Road Enfield at the intersection of Coronation Parade and The Boulevarde.  The Chambers are one of three remaining Enfield Municipal properties still in existence; the others are the Enfield Olympic Pool in Henley Park and Coronation Arch in Plymouth Street. After the cessation of use as a Council Chambers, Strathfield Council has continued ownership and the building has had a variety of uses and is currently privately leased.

The former Enfield Council Chambers are heritage listed on Strathfield Council’s Local Environment Plan. The Enfield War Memorial is located at the front of the Chambers. From 1889 to 1949, Coronation Parade was located in the west ward of Enfield Municipal Council.

In 1888, the population of Enfield had reached 1500 and local residents submitted a petition to the NSW Governor requesting the formation of a municipality. Enfield Municipal Council was incorporated on January 22 1889 and elections were held on March 23 1889.

The boundaries of Enfield Council, according to the 1890 Sands Sydney Directory, were described as ‘From the corner of Greenhill Street and Liverpool Road; thence southerly along the west side of Greenhill Street to the George’s River road; thence westerly along the north side of the George’s River road to the Burwood road; thence southerly along the west side of Burwood road to Cook’s river; thence along the north bank of Cook’s river to the bridge on the Liverpool road to the point of commencement of Greenhill Street’. The first Aldermen elected to Enfield Council were: Thomas Hodson, Hugh Cadden, Frederick H. Lipscomb, Herman H. Groth, Thomas S. Richardson, George Westbrook, James Eve, William Foy and Luke West.

Enfield Town Hall, built 1893, corner of Liverpool Road and The Parade, Enfield. This site later became Greenwood Hall, once used as the Burwood Council Children’s Library but was recently sold by Burwood Council.

Enfield Council rented premises in Tennyson Parade at first, moving to a new Town Hall on the corner of Liverpool Road and The Parade in 1893. This site later became Greenwood Hall, once used as the Burwood Children’s Library but recently sold by Burwood Council.

The final Enfield Council Chambers was built on the corner of Liverpool Rd and Coronation Parade in 1930. The architects of the 1930 Council Chambers were DT Morrow & Gordon, who appear to have been engaged to design numerous Municipal buildings including extensions to the Strathfield Council Chambers, design of the Strathfield Council Baby Health Centre Redmyre Rd Strathfield [late 1940’s] and the former Strathfield Branch Library in High St [1956] and many buildings for Burwood Council.

When the Chambers were built, the tram service was still in operation and ran alongside the eastern side of this building. The former Council Chambers are listed by Strathfield Council as a heritage item.

In 1947, the NSW Labor Government legislated the ‘Greater Sydney Plan’, which advocated the amalgamation and reduction of 67 shires and municipalities in the County of Cumberland to 39. Many small Councils were amalgamated at this time such as Rookwood with Auburn Council, Mascot with Botany Council, Vaucluse with Woollahra Council and Homebush with Strathfield Council. Enfield Municipality was split with the west ward of Enfield Council joining Strathfield Municipality and the central and east wards joining Burwood Municipality. The last meeting of Enfield Council was held in December 1948 and on 1 January 1949 the western ward of Enfield formally transferred to Strathfield Council.

© Cathy Jones 2006. This article is subject to copyright and may not be reproduced without permission of the author.

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