August 27 - September 3, 2022: Issue 552


stony range regional botanical garden: Some History on how a reserve became an australian plant park + current photos

The wonderful Stony Range Flora and Fauna Reserve Volunteers - 2021 photo. 
Stony Range Flora and Fauna Reserve celebrated its Diamond Jubilee as a Flora and Fauna Reserve on September 2nd, 2021. 

On September 2nd 1961 the Stony Range Flora and Fauna Reserve was officially opened, although it had been gazetted under this name in 1959, and then became a Botanic Garden of Australian Bushland in 2006. The Reserve itself was set aside as a place for recreation for the public in 1886.

With thanks to dedicated volunteers over the years it has developed into the calm oasis of bushland it is today with a picnic area, accessible paths for all, cascades and children's areas. The garden is jointly managed by Northern Beaches Council and a Volunteer Advisory Committee. It is free and open every day except Christmas.

Stony Range Botanic Garden has several microclimates: the rainforest gully, the sandstone heath, and the lush ecosystem of the Federation Cascades. The waterfalls that form the Federation Cascades were constructed by volunteers in 2001 to commemorate 100 years of Federation in Australia. Since then they have created their own ecosystem and now abound in lush plants and ferns.

Intricate walkways take visitors to these microclimates. The main circuit takes approximately 20 minutes to complete and in 2013 was extended to include the accessible sensory track - where people of all abilities can experience the Australian bush like never before. Signs along the sensory track point to plants you can touch, taste, smell, and look at, to observe the garden with all your senses. There are also side tracks for the energetic and inquisitive.

After half a century of growth, the rainforest gully is regarded as one of Alec Blombery's (one of the garden's founding members) greatest achievements in the reserve. When Stony Range was first created, the area along the main creekline was badly infested with noxious weeds such as lantana and privet. Today, it is a cool oasis populated with cedar, coachwood, flame trees, hoop pine, lilly pilly, ferns and palms.

The site of the sandstone heath in the upper area of the reserve was part of the stone quarry which was reclaimed with soil fill. Today there is a collection of grasses, grevilleas and banksias which all create a picturesque display at different times of the year.

Stony Range volunteers have a variety of activities to suit all levels of participation. Volunteer sessions run on Tuesday mornings 9am-12pm and Saturday afternoons 2-4pm.

The nursery is also open for sales and advice during these times. Read: Stony Range Volunteer Position DescriptionIf you would like to become a volunteer contact

A few weeks ago Pittwater Online News' Parks and Reserves photographer Joe Mills visited this lovely little oasis on the south hill overlooking Dee Why to catch a pre-Spring preview. Some of Joe's photos run below.

The great team of volunteers who look after this Reserve report this week that many of the bushflowers endemic to our area are now flowering and it's a great place to visit even when not celebrating a Diamond Anniversary.  

Unfortunately due to Covid restrictions, it was necessary to cancel the Diamond Jubilee 60 years Anniversary Spring Festival that was planned for Sunday 12th September 2021 but there are festivities going ahead this year instead.  A special Spring Festival celebration will take place this year on Sunday 9th October in conjunction with the Northern Beaches Group of the Australian Plants Society.

There will be native plants for sale plus many displays, music on the stage, live native animals, children's fun activities, a BBQ and coffee shop. More details on that soon - but first, a look into where this great park for the people commenced and some of the efforts the residents and council have made for over a century to make this one of the best reserves in our area.

As Spring 2022 commences this week, along with History Week 2022, which has a theme this year of 'Hands-on History' and encourages you go out in the field and get hands-on to connect with different sources, stories and histories - Stony Range fits the charter! Hands-on History invites you to explore histories by or about people who do things with their hands, whether that is for work or play.

Let's dive into the formation and continuation of Stony Range Park, Flora and Fauna Reserve and Regional Botanical Garden.

In 1884 the Crown Lands Act came into being on October 17th. Under section 101 of this lands could be set aside for a public purpose:

No. XVIII. An Act to regulate the Alienation Occupation and Management of Crown Lands and for other purposes. [17th October, 1884] 

BE it enacted by the Queen's Most Excellent Majesty by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Council and Legislative Assembly of New South Wales in Parliament assembled and by the authority of the same as follows :-— 

PART I. Preliminary and General Provisions. ]. This Act shall come into force on the first day of January one thousand eight hundred and eighty-five and may be cited as the " Crown Lands Act of 1884" It is divided into Seven Parts embracing the following subjects viz :— 

PART I.—Preliminary and General Provisions—ss. 1-7. PART II.—Establishment of Divisions—Land Districts—Local Land Boards—Hearing of Appeals—ss. 8-20. PART. PART III.—ALIENATION—Conditional Purchases—Conditions and Obligations of Conditional Purchasers—Additional Conditional Purchases—Conditional and Improvement Purchases in Gold-fields—Conditional Purchases without Residence— Conditional Leaseholds—Measurement of Conditional Purchases—Auction Sales—Special Sales without Competition— ss. 21-68 . PART IV.—OCCUPATION—Division of Puns—Pastoral Leases— Occupation Licenses—Homestead Leases—Annual Leases for Pastoral Purposes—Special Leases—Ringbarking by Lessees—General Provisions affecting Leases Lessees and Licensees—ss. 70-100 . PART V.—Dedications—Reserves—Roads—ss. 101-111 . PART VI.—Stat e Forests—Timber Reserves—Licenses—Permits—ss. 112-116 . PART VII.—Transfers—Legal Provisions—Miscellaneous Provisions—ss. 117-115 .

PART V. Dedications—Reserves—Roads. 

101. The Governor may by notice in the Gazette declare what portions of Crown Lands shall be reserved and set apart as sites for cities towns or villages and may define the limits of the suburban lands to be attached thereto and to any existing city town or village and may in like manner declare what portions of Crown Lands shall be temporarily reserved from sale pending survey or determination by him of the portion to be set apart for any public purpose or for commonage or for population areas and all lands so declared shall be reserved accordingly until revoked or altered in like manner. Within one month after such declaration should Parliament be then in session and otherwise within one month after the commencement of the next ensuing session of Parliament there shall be laid before both Houses of Parliament an abstract of all such reservations And the Governor may reserve from conditional sale any Crown Lands within a gold-field under the meaning and operation of any Act in force for the regulation of mining on Crown Lands and the expression public purpose shall be taken to include any purpose for mining for or removal of minerals. From: 

The area in the Reserve and a large part of the hill at the back of it was surveyed into blocks from 4 acres to about 7 1/2 acres (1 3/4 to 3 hectares) in early 1886 and in August 1886 and April 1887 the blocks were offered at Auction Sale as Country Lots' but none of the blocks were bid for. 

Department of Lands,
Sydney, August 24, 1886
Overlooking the Ocean and Manly Lagoon.

151 ALLOTMENTS, varying from 1 rood 25 perches to 7acres 3roods 36perches.
The above will be offered for sale by public auction, on the ground, on SATURDAY, the 28th instant, at 2.45pm., being a continuation of the sale of the 21st instant.
Portions 217 to 310 are east, north, and west of Manly Lagoon; portions 311 to 371 south of Deewhy-road and east of Greendale Estate ; and portions 374, 551 to 554 front Lawrence-street, and are east of Curl Curl Heights.
Terms : 25 per cent, cash deposit, and the balance within three months.
Lithographs, &c, may be obtained at the Map-room, opposite the Exchange, Gresham-street.
Passengers by the 1.30 p.m. Manly steamer can conveniently reach the ground in time for the sale. Vehicles running at moderate fares.
CHARLES OLIVER, Under-Secretary.
Advertising (1886, August 27). Evening News (Sydney, NSW : 1869 - 1931), p. 8. Retrieved from

Plan 352 portions at Harbord. Parish Manly Cove - Wyndora Ave, Pittwater Rd, Brighton St, Lawrence St, Moore St, Wyadra Ave, Abbott Rd, Mitchell Rd, Carrington Pde, Queenscliff Rd, Deewhy Rd, 1887, lithograph courtesy State Library of NSW, Item: SLNSW_FL8998551 - and section from to show detail

On April 3rd 1886 this lot of land was set aside under section 101, along with a lot of other reserves being created on the same date.

Department of Lands,
Sydney, 3rd April, 1886.


HIS Excellency the Governor, with the advice of the Executive Council, directs it to be notified that, in pursuance of the provisions of the 101st section of the Crown Lands Act of 1884, the land specified in the Schedule appended hereto shall be reserved from sale for public recreation, and is hereby reserved accordingly,


No, 138. County of Cumberland, parish of Manly Cove, area 3 acres 2 roods 4 perches. The Crown Lands within the boundaries of portion No. 369, as shown on plan catalogued C. 871-2,030 Roll. Within the Metropolitan Land Board District. [Ms. 86-4,828] RESERVE FROM SALE FOR PUBLIC RECREATION. (1886, April 3). New South Wales Government Gazette (Sydney, NSW : 1832 - 1900), p. 2497. Retrieved from 

Section from: New South Wales. Department of Lands. (1908). Parish of Manly Cove, County of Cumberland Metropolitan Land District, Eastern Division, New South Wales, partly within Warringah Shire Retrieved from - Lots 368 and 330 at the back of these remained unsold. 

Jane Malcolm was the daughter of Sydney Malcolm and Mary Jane Malcolm (nee Farrell - see extras). Jane would later become Mrs. Jane Try (Brookvale - Greendale). R 141, gazetted on the same date was for:

Department of Lands,
Sydney, 3rd April, 1886.

HIS Excellency the Governor, with the advice of the Executive Council, directs it to be notified that in pursuance of the provisions of the 101st section of the Crown Lands Act of 1884, the land specified in the Schedule appended hereto shall be reserved from sale for road purposes, and is hereby reserved accordingly.


No. 141. County of Cumberland, parish of Manly Cove, area 2' acres 1 rood 25 perches. The Crown Lands within the boundaries of measured portion No, 372, as shown on plan catalogued C, 871-2,030 Roll. RESERVE FROM SALE FOR ROAD PURPOSES. (1886, April 3). New South Wales Government Gazette (Sydney, NSW : 1832 - 1900), p. 2496. Retrieved from

Also worth noting is portion 648 - then towards the Long Reef headland:

Department of Lands,
Sydney, 3rd April, 1886.

HIS Excellency the Governor, with the advice of the Executive Council, directs it to be notified that, in pursuance of the provisions of the 101st section of the Crown Lands Act of 1884, the land specified in the Schedule appended hereto shall be reserved from sale for quarry, and is hereby reserved accordingly.


No. 144. County of Cumberland, parish of Manly Cove, area 3 acres. The Crown Lands within the boundaries of measured portion No. 648, as shown on plan catalogued C. 871-2,030 Roll. Within the Metropolitan Land Board District. [Mb. 86-4,828]  RESERVE FROM SALE FOR QUARRY. (1886, April 3). New South Wales Government Gazette (Sydney, NSW : 1832 - 1900), p. 2496. Retrieved from 

Warringah Shire Council Minutes of Meetings record in the archives of July 17th 1908 that ''that the works committee together with the Engineer meet in a date to defined for the purposes for the purposes of visiting the basalt and limestone deposits at Deewhy with the view of having the same opened out for quarry purposes.'' Carried unanimously; The site was visited the following Tuesday.

This would indicate the council had trusteeship of this reserve from soon after its formation although the state government would still have had access. 

Many of these Reserves that were created before Warringah Shire Council began were handed to them to oversee, as Trustees. Those that were overseen by residents in these areas were gradually approached to divest the Trusteeship to the Council. The Council also needed basalt and gravel (metal) to form roads, as all councils in NSW were made responsible for these, away from Main Roads, from their commencement. 

In 1912 this was the site of Dee Why Hill (or Cable Hill) Quarry which produced ballast for construction of Narrabeen tramway - as this was a state government project, this indicates the council using the site for its own road building projects made this an easy option for the tramway builds:





TRAMWAY CONNECTION WITH NARRABEEN. (1912, March 6). The Sydney Mail and New South Wales Advertiser (NSW : 1871 - 1912), p. 35. Retrieved from 

NOTICE is hereby given that the Council of this Shire have, by resolution, declared all the land contained in portions 19, 32, 352 to 371, 1,213, and 1,217 to 1,220, within the villages of Dee why and Narrabeen, to be a scavenging area.
Council Chambers, Brookvale, Shire Clerk.
17th September, 1912. WARRINGAH SHIRE COUNCIL. (1912, September 18). Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW : 1901 - 2001), p. 5827. Retrieved from

EB Studios (Sydney, N.S.W.). (1917). Panorama of Dee Why looking north, North Sydney, New South Wales (and enlarged sections to show detail Retrieved from

Forster, Adam. (1922). Corymbia gummifera, Dee Why, New South Wales, 20 March 1922 Retrieved from 

Further Warringah Shire Council records show that on  24th March, 1924: Neale Ads. Lts. 1/3/24 were applying for permission to erect on Dr. Thomas land in Condamine Street, and on land in same street Referred to the lnspector for report. Same, 4/3/240 applying for permission to erect a hoarding - on Mrs. Try’s land on Stony Range Referred to the Inspector for report.  On the same date the Brookvale-Progress Assn. (letter dated 10/3/24) were drawing attention to the condition of certain streets in Brookvale and to the need for a footpath along the Main Road over Stony Range: Council Resolved; That the matter of the footpath over Stony Range be referred to the Representatives of B and C. Ridings

The Meeting held on February 9th, 1925: 2-3. Resolved, - (Crs. Campbell, Melcillop) That the Harbord Road Engineer's report regarding the construction of Harbord Road, from Greendale Creek to Stony Range, at an estimated (Proposed.) total cost of £1545, be adopted, and steps be taken to borrow the money necessary for the purposes 4-5. Resolved, - 9(Crs. Hewitt, Hitchcock) That the construction of Ocean Road, Palm Beach, from its junction Ocean Road with Palm Beach Road southward, in accordance with the (Vote) Engineer's report, at an estimated cost of £678 be carried out. Resolved, - (Crc. Hitchcock, Atkins) That prices for the work be obtained by tender and compared with the Engineer's Estimate. 

The Council subsequently sought a loan of £2000 with the extra money dedicated towards building dressing sheds on Harbord beach.

Later in February 1925 Neale Ads. 12/2/25, advise 'that the advertising board they desire to erect on Stony Range is 40 feet by 10 feet. Council Resolved; That they be informed the Council will have no objection to a sign 20 feet by 6 feet being erected.

Queen of Dee Why (1925, January 18). Sunday Times (Sydney, NSW : 1895 - 1930), p. 3. Retrieved from 


A picture from the exhibition of water colors by Mr. J. Muir Auld, which is to be opened at Farmer's on Monday next. MORNING AT DEE WHY (1925, May 16). The Daily Telegraph (Sydney, NSW : 1883 - 1930), p. 1. Retrieved from 

At Its Meeting held on February 15th, 1926 the Council received notice from the Lands Department, forwarding Gazette Notice of intention to close the balance of the Reserve for Road purposes adjoining Deewhy Road at Stony Range. Council Resolved;  That the recommendation in the Engineer's report be adopted, namely - That no objection be offered to the reduction of the width of Deewhy Roads and that the Department be asked for a contribution towards reconditioning of that road. 

Sydney, 15th January, 1926.
NOTICE is hereby given that the Minister for Lands is of opinion that it is expedient to close, under the provisions of the 19th and 20th sections of the Public Roads Act, 1902, the roads, &c., hereunder described; and all persons interested are hereby called upon to set forth in writing, addressed to the Minister for Lands, within one month from date of this notice, any objections which may appear to them to exist to tliQ closing of the same.

P. F. LOUGHLIN, Minister for Lands.  
The parts of public road known as Dee Why road, separating portion 372 from portions 328 and 329, being strips thereof 50 links wide adjoining southern boundary of portion 372 and western boundary of portion 329, as now included in approved design for subdivision, parish of Manly Cove, county of Cumberland. Warringah Shire. [Roads 1923-645-10] PROPOSED CLOSING OF UNNECESSARY ROADS, &c. (1926, January 15). Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW : 1901 - 2001), p. 260. Retrieved from

The Neale Ads. Ltd. people were writing again (18.3.26) requesting the Council not to grant any other, firms a right to erect a sign on Mrs. Try's land on Stony Range. Council Resolved, - (Crs. Corkery,Hitchcock) That they be informed-the Council cannot grant them them sole right to a site, but will deal with every request on its merits. 

The following year the Deewhy Improvement League (letter dated 13.7.26.) were explaining their proposal for improving the Public Reserve on Stony Range for which £45/10/10 carnival proceeds has been allocated. Council Resolved, — (Crs. (Campbell, Parr) That the proposal be approved.

Whitaker, Hayman and Co.Ltd. 14.7.26 at proposal for the transfer of their saw and planing mill to their new property near Stony Range, and requesting the Council's assistance in dealing with drainage in that locality. Referred to the Engineer.

13/9/1926: (Crs.Corkery, Campbell) That the Lands Departmnt be asked if there is a 66-ft. road on the northern 'side of Stony Range Reserve where a 20-ft. lane is shown on some plans.
27/9/1926: That the Report of the Works Committee, as contained in the Minutes of the Committee's meeting of 21st September, be adopted. ondamine -. A Report by the Clerk t'Lthe special inspections by the Council in regard to (a) the proposed straightening of Condamine Street; (b) in regard to the alteration of drainage on Stony Range Reserve, and through Whitaker and Hayman's property, and (c) Provision for a footbridge in Condamine Street, near Pittwater Road,. was adopted

Deewhy Progress Assn, 22.11.26. requesting that the Lands Department be asked to close the road on the northern side of Stony Range Park, and add it to the Park: Council resolved: That the Association be informed that a Iarge private property has a right to a road, and in any case, it is better to have a road as a boundary for a park than private property.

INDEPENDENCE of Local Government help is expressed by a body of voluntary workers at Dee Why. Five years ago residents banded together into what became the Dee Why Improvement League. By carnivals which they have since conducted each Christmas holiday season, assisted by local lodges and clubs they have raised £1600. That money has been spent in constructing rock baths, a concrete wall of steps as an approach to the beach, and beautifying the beach reserve and other local parks. Last Christmas £368, was raised, actually a clear profit of 72.19 per cent over all expenses. RESIDENTS' RECORD (1928, October 3). Evening News (Sydney, NSW : 1869 - 1931), p. 11. Retrieved from 

Later that year Council records show:

Deewhy Improvement League. 6/11/28. Requesting that Messrs. Terrett and Stutchbury be appointed trustees of Stony Range Reserve. Council Resolved: That the League has no power to appoint the gentlemen named as trustees of the reserve, as the Council itself is itself gazetted trustee, but that it appoints them as trustees/for the purpose of supervising expenditure of the League's money. 

The Deewhy Improvement League are at it again as the Meeting held on 10th June, 1929, shows....; and Oaks Avenue, (4) requesting that consideration be given to the resumption of land for continuing Avon Road to Delmar Parade, and (5) requesting that a prominent locality sign "Deewhy" be erected on Stony Range Park near Pittwater Road. Resolved (Crs. Rose, Greenwood) - That, the first request be complied with when the Council is in a position to demolish the cottages and that a sign be erected at this spot "Clean tipping may be placed here." The 2nd, 3rd and 4th requests were referred to B. Riding Councillors, and in regard to the 5th it was decided that the Main Roads Board be requested to erect such a sign.

WHY "TILLY" DEVINE MOVED -- SPEECH DAY AT KING'S AND SHORE -- END OF TRIAL MATCH (1929, December 12). The Daily Telegraph (Sydney, NSW : 1883 - 1930), p. 16. Retrieved from 

On January 28th, 1930: The Main Roads Board have penned a missive to the Council (13.1.30) ; Stating further action Pittwater Rd. proposed to be taken to improve drainage of Pittwater en Road construcitiatad' near Oaks Avenue. Referred to the Engineer for - . report to next meeting. 3. Same. 10.1.30. Re reconstruction of Pittwater Road from Brookvale to Deewhy, 'requesting cheque for £1046.7.0 - in payment of the Council's contribution towards the cost of the subsidiary works as detailed in the Board's letter- of... 1928; also strongly recommending the Council to adopt the scheme for drainage of Stony Range area, as explained in Board's letter. of 25.11.28, and offering to advance the money necessary for the carrying out of the work, and allow repayment in three equal instalments with interest at the ruling Treasury rate Resolved (Crs. Parr, Corkery.)'- That the Engineer. furnish an estimate of the drainage work at Stony Range referred to in the Board's letter. Resolved (Crs Parr, Campbell) - That the Board be requested to allow the Council to make payment of the cost of the subsidiary works over the period of the loan, viz - 15 years.

By the Meeting held on February 10th 1930: Council Resolved (Crs. Parr, Corkery) - That the Main Roads Board be furnished with a copy of the Shire Engineer's Stony Range report respecting the drainage of Stony Range Reserve, and asked what the Board is prepared to contribute towards drainage the cost, but that first of all the Engineer add to his report an estimate of the cost of taking the water through to Sturdee Parade.

The Main Roads Board writes again on 22/4/30. Re Pittwater Road re: Kerb and Guttering between Brookvale and Deewhy, agreeing to bear half the cost of the work done along the Stony Range Pittwater Rd. Reserve frontage, and submitting amended schedule of half- yearly instalments in payment of subsidiary works. Resolved, That half the cost of the kerb and gutter construction in front of private properties be charged to the owners concerned (Ore. Ross, ustin). 2. Same. 22/4/30. Stating the Board is unable to gic&c ±'Marne Drive!j'Etvourable to the "Marine Drive" prposal. - 2a. West Harbord Progress Association. 3/5/30. Requesting that the Shire Engineer's services be made available for preparation of plan, and estimate of cost, of "Marine Drive". Resolved, - That the Secretary of the movement be furnished with a copy of the Board's letter. (Czs. Corkery, McPaul). Resolved, - That the Engineer be allowed to prepare a plan and estimetc of the proposed "Marine Drive" as requested (Crs. M6Paul, Camjbell). Resolved, - That Deewhy Improvement League be asked whether it has allocated £9 towards the painting of the Stony Range Reserve fence, and that if so, the Council is prepared to supply the paint. (Ors. Ross, Greenwood).

View of Dee Why beach, [1930s-1950s] / photographed by Max Dupain DATE [1930s-1950s] courtesy  Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales

On May 5th 1930: Main Roads Board..15/4 Requesting to be furnished with a definite reply respecting the matter of Stony Range Reserve drainage. Resolved, - 'The Board be informed that the Council considers the Board should bear the whole of the cost of this drainage work. (Crs. Corkery, Greenwood) 33. Royal Motor Yacht Club, Broken Bay Branch. ag/4/30.. WpliuzattpRd.R0 improvement of Wallumatta road leading to the Clubhouse, and offering to increase promised contribution of £10 to £25 if Councjl will cut a low level track parallel with existing roadway. Referred to Engineer for report.

Later that month; Main Roads Board. 23/5/30. Declining to accept responsibility in connection with Stony Range Reserve drainage, but stating that if the Council has any additional information bearing on the matter the Board will be pleased to discuss the problem in conference with a deputation from the Council. Resolved, - That it be suggested to the Board that the Board's representatives and the Council's representatives meet on the spot and discuss other matters relating to drainage in Pittwater Road; (Crs. Robertson, Corkery) . 

By June 30th, 1930: The Main Roads Board's letter of 27/6/30 was read in conjunction with the report regarding Stony Range Reserve drainage. Resolved (Crs. Corkery, Parr) - that the Board's proposal be adopted, and that for the purpose of carrying Stony Range Reserve proposal into effect, the Council write to Whitaker Hayman Ltd. and Mr. Cook, suggesting the former contribute £50 and the latter £12 for the purpose of' carrying the proposal-out up to and across Delmar Parade, and that if they agree to contribute, the Council call for tenders for the carrying out of the work, the letters to be sent-without a prejudice. 

Soon after the Council received a letter, dated 9/2/1931 that Whitaker and Hayman Ltd. intimating that its Directors are not prepared at this stage to contribute towards the cost of drainage works at Stony Range Reserve. 

The Main Roads 10/2/31, were submitting a proposal for chargings for kerbing and guttering adjacent to Kerb at Mrs. Try's property, Pittwater Road, Stony Range. Council Resolved; That the Board be asked whether it would Pay half cost if Mrs Try pays one-quarter of the cost, it being pointed out at the same time that the Council considers the Board should boar the t;hoie of the cost as the kerb end gutter is of no value for footpath purposes. 

At the Council Meeting held on September 7th, 1931; By Cr. Campbell - That the erection of two notice boards on Stony Range Reserve prohibiting destruction of trees etc. as previously authorised, be expedited.

Minutes of Meeting of Warringah Shire Council held on Tuesday, 30th April 1935. over for the present, and that the Rates Committee keep the matter in mind when it receives offers for the handing over of lands in liquidation of rates debts. Cr. Nicholas moved, as an amendment, that they be offered a piece of land on Stony Range Reserve, or a site on the drainage reserve near Pacific Flats. 'H Cr. Ross. seconded. The amendment was defeated, Cr5. Ross and Nicholas recording their votes for it. The original motion was thereupon put and carried. 

In the excellent Stony Range History compiled by Harry Kilby an overview of the story of how this Reserve changed from being a park to a Flora and Fauna Reserve is recorded. This was researched and written by Harry Kilby for the Management Committee Stony Range Flora Reserve, and finished by 30th June, 1988. This document fills in some of the gaps between the 1930's and 1988 and lends further insight into the work done by Warringah Shire Councillor Corkery in looking after this Reserve.

Mr Kilby states;

''Most of the area now known as Stony Range Flora Reserve was set apart for its present use by notification in the Government Gazette of 10th of May 1957, but it is relevant and interesting to go back much further than that to record the history of the area.

The back part of the present reserve in Portion 368 had only casual occupation in 1944. It has not been possible to ascertain how the area came to be known as 'Stony Range' except that because of its geological formation. it was natural. The 1886  survey plan shows along the top of the ridge ''Watershed between Manly and Dee Why lagoons". The area was referred to as Stony Range in the early 1950's and there seemed to be no hesitation in calling it that when the area was first talked about as a Flora Reserve.

There has always been a strong association between Manly Warringah Flora and Fauna Protection Society and the Reserve. The Society was formed at a meeting in Manly-Council Chambers on 2nd September 1953 with the presence of Alderman Brown of Manly Council and Councillor J Corkery of Warringah Shire and an attendance of 10, with Councillor Corkery being appointed President, a position he held until June 1967. During the whole of 1956 the Society had an average monthly attendance of 70.

It is interesting to note that in the very early days of the Society it obtained the use of an area of 2 acres of Manly Reservoir to develop, to be known as ''Acacia Park". Many wattles (over 500) were planted, but use by the public caused so much damage that the project was gradually abandoned. 

In 1956 President and Councillor Corkery then turned his attention to obtaining for the Society the use of ''Stony Range Reserve" which was to be known as 'Warringah Botanical Grounds for Australian Native Flora". Due to the efforts of Councillor Joe Corkery. the 1886 Reserve for Public Recreation was revoked in the Government Gazette of 10th of May, 1957 and the present Reserve No 79601 for the Promotion of Native Flora and Fauna'' was notified. The Society was asked by the Shire Council  to nominate a Management Committee of five for the Reserve. The five nominated were Councillor Joe Corkery and Messrs Dill, Johnson Charles Daley, H. Overall and H. Cobb. This Committee of Stony Range Flora Reserve held its first meeting on 24th October 1957, and appointed Mr Corkery as President and Mr Bill Johnson as Secretary.

It is recorded in the minutes of successive monthly-- meetings of Manly Warringah Flora and Fauna Protection Society- that the first official opening of the Warringah Botanic Gardens was held on the ground on Saturday afternoon 14th September 1957, but there is no record of who officiated. presumably Joe Corkery.


IN accordance with the provisions of the Public Trusts Act, 1897, I, Lieutenant-General Sir John Northcott, Governor of the State of New South Wales, with the advice of the Executive Council, do, by this notice, appoint the undermentioned gentlemen and bodies as trustees of the portions of land hereinafter particularised.

Signed and sealed at Sydney, this 11th day of July, 1957,


By. deputation from His Excellency the Governor.

By His Excellency's Command,


Reserve No. 79,601 at Stony Range, Dee Why, parish of Manly Cove, county of Cumberland, notified 10th May, 1957, for the Promotion of the Study and the Preservation of Native Flora and Fauna:—The Council of the Shire of Warringah. P, 57-1,670. NOTICE APPOINTING TRUSTEES UNDER THE PUBLIC TRUSTS ACT, 1897.—PROCLAMATION. (1957, July 12). Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW : 1901 - 2001), p. 2184. Retrieved from 

Sydney, 30th January, 1959.


HIS Excellency the Governor, with the advice of the Executive Council, having approved of the following regulations made by the trustees for the care and management of Reserve No. 79,601, notified 10th May, 1957, for the Promotion of the Study and the Preservation of Native Flora and Fauna, such regulations are hereby published for public information.

W. M. GOLLAN, Minister for Lands.

1. In these regulations unless inconsistent with the context or subject matter— "permission" means permission of the trustees or person authorised by the trustees; "reserve" means Reserve No. 79,601 for promotion of the study and the preservation of native flora and fauna. 

2. The reserve shall be open to the public only on such days and at such times as the trustees shall determine and indicate by a notice exhibited in a conspicuous place near the entrance to the reserve.

3. A person shall not without permission enter the reserve except when it is open to the public.

4. The trustees may make charges for admission to the reserve and exclude the public therefrom except on payment of such charges, such charges to be indicated by a notice exhibited in a conspicuous place near the entrance to the reserve.

5. The trustees or any person authorised in that behalf by the trustees may refuse admittance to any person who in their opinion would be likely to cause annoyance or inconvenience upon the reserve or any person who has been found guilty of a breach of these regulations.

6. A person shall not use the reserve except in accordance with the purposes for which the reserve is held by the trustees.

7. A person shall not injure or molest any flora or fauna in the reserve.

8. A person shall not remove or interfere with any rock, soil, dead wood or other material in the reserve or cause damage to any fence, structure or other improvements appertaining to the reserve.

9. A person shall not deposit rubbish of any kind in the reserve or any matter or thing likely to inflict injury on the public or the flora or fauna therein.

10. A person shall not without permission take any animal or vehicle into the reserve.

11. A person shall not take into the reserve any tool, implement, firearm or device which is capable of being used to remove, injure or destroy any tree, shrub, plant, bird or animal in the reserve or anything appertaining thereto.

12. A person shall not light any fire in the reserve except in a place specially provided for the convenience of the public.

13. A person shall not without permission engage in any trade or business in the reserve.

14. A person shall not without permission distribute or exhibit advertisements or notices of any kind in the reserve or on anything appertaining thereto.

15. A person shall not do any act in the reserve which would be likely to injure, endanger, obstruct, inconvenience or annoy

any person therein.

16. The trustees shall not introduce into the reserve any tree, shrub, or plant which is not indigenous to Australia.

17. Nothing in these regulations shall be deemed to prevent any officer or servant of the trustees or any person authorised by the trustees from doing in pursuance of his duty any act or thing hereby prohibited.

18. (a) Any trespasser or other person causing annoyance or inconvenience in the reserve may be removed forthwith by the trustees or any person authorised in that behalf by the trustees.

(b) Any person committing a breach of any of these regulations shall be liable to a penalty not exceeding fifty pounds. REGULATIONS FOR THE CARE AND MANAGEMENT OF STONY RANGE FLORA AND FAUNA RESERVE (1959, January 30). Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW : 1901 - 2001), p. 270. Retrieved from 

Mr Kilby's History of Stony Range Flora and Fauna Reserve continues:

From that time on there has been continual development of the area. Members of the Flora and Fauna Society and of the Management Committee organised a concert and functions mostly at their own homes to raise funds, so that in early 1961 the Committee was able to have the area fenced with its present fencing, and the nursery sheds and the Committee Room were built. These buildings and the Reserve itself were officially opened on 2nd September 1961 by the Hon. K C Comyton, then Minister for Lands, and a bronze plaque on a large rock just inside the gate bears witness to that effect.

The minutes record that at a monthly meeting of the Manly-Warringah Flora and Fauna Protection Society on 8th February 1961 it was decided to hold an open day for Lady members at Stony Range on Saturday 18th February 1961. At this meeting the Ladies Auxiliary was formed with Mrs Wiseman as its first President. She was succeeded by Mrs McKenzie until 1964. Then Mrs Olive Leckie took over the position for the next 17 years. In 1981 Mrs Joan Wallace took over the job. 

Since its formation in 1961, the members of the Ladies Auxiliary have performed invaluable work for Stony Range. Every Saturday in the past 27 years, some of them have been on hand to provide afternoon tea for the voluntary workers. Many- of their members have also been involved in planting and weeding, and other tasks as necessary. But perhaps of even greater service to the Range, in the spring flowering season over the years, they have maintained a roster on the gates. to welcome visitors- collect donations and serve afternoon teas - a service which has brought very favourable comment to the management of the Reserve.

By so doing and selling afternoon teas to the public at very nominal charges, they have been able to supply the Reserve with trwo refrigerators, a hot water system, spray equipment for the nursery and many other pieces of equipment. In all, the Ladies Auxiliary has made donations to the Reserve in cash and kind in excess of $6.500 from its sale of afternoon teas.

The Reserve owes a very great debt to the two ladies responsible for the organisation of this work as well as their own contribution over the past 25 years, Mrs Olive Leckie and Mrs Joan Wallace (who was the President of the Committee at the time of Harry's penning this work).

The Reserve's Car Park had a varied life. It was left as a 66 feet road for access to the portion now forming the back part of the Reserve and for pedestrian access up the hill to Tango Avenue. However h 1961 and 1962 both the Department of Lands and Warringah Shire Council agreed to representations to close all but 20 fet of the road, and to add the closed part to Reserve No.: 79601 as part of Stony Range Flora Reserve. There was some delay in the matter but the proposal was notified in the Gazette af 24 th September 1965. For reasons which have not been disclosed the proposal did not proceed to finality. 

Sydney, 24th September, 1965.


NOTICE is hereby given that the Minister for Lands is of opinion that it is expedient to close, under the provisions of the 19th and 20th sections of the Public Roads Act, 1902, the roads hereunder described, and all persons interested are hereby called upon to set forth in writing, addressed to the Minister for Lands, within one month from the date of this notice, any objections which may appear to them to exist to the closings thereof.

T. L. LEWIS, Minister for Lands.


Land District—Metropolitan; Shire—Warringah

Road shown by hatching on diagram hereunder, parish Manly Cove, county Cumberland. R. 65-297.

Note.—If closed, it is proposed to add the land to the Stony Range Flora Reserve

PROPOSED CLOSING OF ROADS (1965, September 24). Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW : 1901 - 2001), p. 3150. Retrieved from

Harry continues:

The Committee has always been concerned to have some control over its only possible carparking area and again made representations in about 1986 to the Council to have all but 20 feet of it closed. On this occasion action proceeded to finality and most of the car park was included in Stony Range Flora Reserve following notification of closing of the road in the Government Gazette of 15th. May 1987. The Council has since carried out excellent work in sealing a formal part of the carpark and planting the surrounds with native plants. 

About 1970 it was decided to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the fencing and official opening of the Reserve, and it was suggested that new and substantial gates should be obtained and opened about September 197l . A design made by National Parks and Wildlife Service was largely adopted resulting in the existing entrance gates and the signs at both ends of the Reserve on Pittwater Road.

The new gates were officially opened on Sunday 22nd August 1971 by the Governor of New South Wales, Sir Roden Cutler and a bronze plaque to that effect still adorns the left hand gate post.

From its official opening in 1961, the Reserve continued to be developed by voluntary labour, supplied mostly by the Flora and Fauna Society. This was greatly assisted by virtue of the fact that two members of the Committee, Messrs Daley and Cobb lived in Pittwater Road immediately opposite the Reserve and attended voluntarily to opening the gate and money collections.

In the pamphlet for distribution at the gate, was first produced in July 1963 and printed by the Department of Lands. ln 1969 a new and improved pamphlet was written and designed and a first publication of 10,000 copies was made. It proved to be most successful and with slight amendments has been reprinted and is still in use.

The first mention of paid labour was in Augusst 1964 when Mr A. Venthoff was paid £5 per day for one day a week.

The Reserve's first full time gardener commenced on 14th June, 1966 with the Reserves Committee to pay 90% of his wages.

Employment of a ranger has continued ever since, with the Committee successfully paying 60 % then 40 % of wages until due to inflation it is now not responsible for any set percentage.

Construction of a pond was commenced in June 1967 but completion was delayed. The pond was officially- "opened" by the Warringah Shire President, Councillor Huntingdon in August 1969 with an attendance of 600.

In February 1966, a company called Bonds (nothing to do with the AIan Bond of W.A.] owned the land between the Reserve and Harbord Road which it proposed to subdivide and the company offered a hilly area of 150 feet by 175 feet to Stony Range for £2500.

The proposal continued through the Department of Lands and eventually the area (2 rood 16 perches) was added to Reserve 79601 covering Stony Range, by notification in the Gazette of 24th May, 1968. It appears that no payment was ever made for the area and Bonds certainly met the full cost of fencing.

Whilst on the subject of this Company, it seems to have been beneficially owned by Herman Slade and on his death some 8 or 9 years later, the Nell and Herman Slade Trust commenced donating $1,000 to Stony Range, annually, the first having been made in 1977, and this has continued.


IN pursuance of the provisions of section 25a of the Crown Lands Consolidation Act, 1913, I, Sir Arthur Roden Cutler, Governor of the State of New South Wales, with the advice of the Executive Council, do hereby proclaim the reserves from sale or lease generally, particularized hereunder, to be revoked and they are hereby revoked accordingly.

Signed and sealed at Sydney, this 8th day of May, 1968.

A. R. CUTLER, Governor. By His Excellency's Command,

T. L. LEWIS, Minister for Lands. GOD SAVE THE QUEEN!

Land District—Metropolitan; Shire—Warringah

No. 86747 from sale or lease generally, notified in this Gazette, Parish Manly Cove, County Cumberland, 2 roods 16 ½ perches, being that part of portion 370 south of Stony Range Reserve R. 79601 for promotion of the study and preservation of native flora and fauna notified 10th May, 1967shown as lot 7 on Deposited Plan 523299 and being also the whole of the land comprised in Certificate of Title, volume 10517, folio 35. Plans C. 2543-2030. R. 871-2030R. Papers Pks 62-2153. REVOCATION OF RESERVES FROM SALE OR LEASE GENERALLY.—PROCLAMATION (1968, May 24). Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW : 1901 - 2001), p. 2136. Retrieved from 

Harry's History of Stony Range continues:

The upper corner of the Reserve is the area now known as the Heathland had been used as a stone quarry for general use in the district. This left a considerable hole in the landscape and obtaining suitable material to fill it proved to be difficult; 40 to 50 tons were delivered about April 1970 and a further 400 tons in January 1971. This had to be levelled and paths made. The area was planted by November 1971 and was opened to the public in May 1973.

About November 1972 abridge across a watercourse was completed by members of the Australian Native Orchid Society, Warringah Group, and that Group undertook development and maintenance of the area in that vicinity - a labour of love still performed today.

During 1972,the need was felt for a caretakers residence. Representations were made, a design for a 3 bedroom home approved, and donations of $6,000 each from the Department of Lands and Warringah Shire Council promised. The Committee contributed $2,000 and much labour, and the building was completed and occupied about October 1973.

ln 1972. the suggestion of having interested people donate a small sum annually was suggested and designs for a badge and car sticker were made. Thus were born the people we now call subscribers. In 1973 they contributed $195 and in 1987-88 they donated $580 to aid the Reserve.

At about the same time in 1972 the suggestion was made that a booklet should be prepared for sale at the gate outlining native plants common to the Hawkesbury Sandstone country similar to Stony Range or which were likely to grow in this area.

The task of preparation was undertaken by Committee Members Alec Blombery ard Betty Maloney in conjunction with members of the Society for Growing Australian plants (S.G.A.P). The book was completed and 7,000 copies printed. More than 5,000 have now ben sold and sufficient funds accumulated from the sales, probably to reprint it, if and when necessary

ln March 1980 approval was given for the then chairman's, the late Eric Gordon's, glasshouse to be transferred from his office premises at Lidcombe to Stony Range on the understanding that he would will it to the Range. The work of demolition removal and re-building was carried out by voluntary workers. It has since been improved by A.N.O.S. members and is now attended wholly by them.

Whilst the Reserve has been maintained to a large extent as natural bushland parts of it have been given special attention and these should be mentioned in a history of Stony Range Reserve. The numhers used to identify different areas refer to those shown on the free pamphlet available at the gate.

When the Reserve was first notified in 1957, the area along the main creek from 2 to 17 was badly infested with exotics, lantana and privet, and these were eradicated over several years. Since that time the area has been developed as a rainforest, planted with Cedar, Coachwood, Flame Free, Hoop Pine, Lilly Pilly, ferns and palms. After almost 30 years of growth the Reserve Committee regards it as one of its Chairman, Alec Blombery's greatest achievements. 

The area of rain forest between No's 17 and 16 was planted in June and July 1988 with Proteaceae specimens from North Queensland Rain Forests as a gift from the Sydney Royal Botanic Gardens.

In autumn of 1977 an upper part of the Reserve, especially that surrounded by the two paths between No's 9 and 10. and bush below that area were deliberately burnt by a controlled bush fire with most pleasing regenerative results. ln particular Boronia ledifolia which used to be native to the area but had died out, was restored with up to 20 plants many of which are still flowering to day. These remarks also apply to Eriostemen buxifolia. The area between the paths from 9 to 10 is a perfect example of regeneration which can follow a bush fire as no plants have ever been planted in this area since the fire, nor has it ever been necessary to weed it.

About 1986 it was decided that as a Bi-Centenary project, the area between the path running uphill (eastern) from No 8 and the fence should be developed as a special Proteaceae area to contain all of the 86 species which grow in the Sydney Region.

As a result most of the Banksias, Grevilleas and Hakeas in this category have already been planted and are growing well.

When the plants are well established it is intended at some future date to put a new path through this area.

ln the spring of 1987- some pruning was done to the large trees to the right of the main entrance- and about 8 Oreocallis wickhamii were planted. These are known as the Queensland Waratah and when they have grown in a few years time, it is hoped they will provide a spectacular entrance to Stony Range.

Early in 1988, it was decided to develop an area specialising in plants described as "primitive plants". The area between No 11 and the fence was selected as most suitable and has already been planted with Gymea Lilies, palms, cycads and pines.

These are very slow growing plants and it is hoped they will provide interest for coming generations.

It has been the policy of all management committees to have no memorials of any kind in the Reserve and this has been strictly observed with one exception however, no history of Stony Range would be complete without paying tribute to two people. 

One was Joe Corkery who was largely responsible for: having the area reserved for its present purposes 1957. 

Similarly he was president of Manly Warringah Flora and Fauna Protection Society from its inception in 1953-until June 1967. Similarly he was chairman of Stony Range Management Committee from its first meeting in 1957 until his death in September 1960. He also had considerable ability in growing Australian natives and developed a double Boronia Ledifolia Corkerii in the Reserve but unfortunately it has since died out.

At the request of the Society, and with the agreement of the then Committee, the Committee Room was named "The Corkery Building "and still bears that name. A plaque inside the building also bears testimony to his services.

The other person to whom tribute must be paid is present chairman of the management committee Mr. Alec Morris Blombery. Alec first spoke to a meeting of 78 of the Flora and Fauna Society on 10th. October 1956 and became a member the following month. When the first building in the Reserve was proposed prior to fencing he was appointed Honorary Building Supervisor in June 1960. His position Building Inspector for the Rural Bank made him eminently suitable for the position and he has continued to perform those duties for the Reserve ever since. He was appointed to the committee on 12th. February 1961. Alec, as a hobby, also had great interest in native plants and his first book on Natives was published in 1955 with several to follow. It was therefore only natural that on 27th February 1962 the minutes record that he was to be in control of all planting in the Reserve, and this has also persisted.

However, a perusal of the minutes of committee meetings also show that subscribers were commenced on his suggestion as was the new 1969 pamphlet and the plant booklet. Not only were they his suggestions, but he also donated the work involved.

As well as supervising the construction of all buildings within the Reserve, he also accepted responsibility of the erection of new gates in 1971, construction of the pool, and obtaining soil to fill the quarry. Yes. it will be a sad day for Stony Range when Alec's services are no longer available.

Harry's praise for Mr. Corkery is not the only recognition - this appeared in a paper far from here:


Dear Editor, Congratulations on your splendid local paper Nota. We too look forward to every issue as it gives us the news of the district between visits. In common with other correspondents from Sydney interested in the preservation of the irreplaceable natural beauty of Hawks Nest, I am fearful of the future if development continues in the present unthinking manner. I enclose an article from the Manly Daily entitled "Where are all the flowers gone" which will give you an idea what can happen and, in fact, did happen to that once famous beauty and tourist spot. 

The one bright spot in the whole sad picture is the establishment of Stony Range Native Garden and Flora and Bird Sanctuary, the second following naturally upon the other. It is and will remain a unique memorial to the Warringah Shire Councillor who founded it. Have we such a councillor here in Hawks Nest willing to act before it is too late? People of Hawks Nest look at the beauty around you with fresh eyes. It is all too true that "Familiarity Breeds Contempt", and perhaps those of you who are privileged to live in this beautiful place have come to take for granted birds, the trees and the wonderful flowers and mountains, waters which sparkle in the warm sunshine. This thoughtless clearing of land and consequent loss of trees and soil has and will cause serious erosion in the area and if you continue in this destruction it may be that future tourists will be invited to visit the Hawks Nest desert and view the famous Yacaaba Rock! Think of the future generation, of your grandchildren and mine and be sure that the contempt is not for you and for what you have done or not done, said or not said, whilst there was still time.

Barbara Jones, Landowner Winda Woppa.  LETTERS TO THE EDITOR (1974, October 1). Nota (Hawks Nest and Tea Gardens, NSW : 1970 - 1999), p. 9. Retrieved from 

Stony Range Reserve has gone from being a place set aside for public recreation to becoming a park and then a Flora and Fauna Reserve. Over the 110 year history when it has been serving our community in a variety of ways from being a place to source ballast for roads and then a park with a view to the place where Australian plants specialists formed a showcase of the same from the 1950's on, as volunteers, this place forms not only a connection to our past it also symbolises an investment in our future.

In 2006 Stony Range Flora and Fauna Reserve became a Regional Botanic Garden of Native Bushland. It is still the meeting place of the local group of Australian Plants Society NSW members and its early members are still inspiring research and the cultivation of Australian plants.

This week Northern Beaches Council Mayor Michael Regan has paid tribute to this great place for people, saying;

''What was once a rock quarry, Stony Range Garden has been transformed into a 3.3-hectare tranquil oasis tucked away amongst a busy industrial area. 

It is truly a hidden gem and a feast for the senses along with being accessible to people of all abilities. You can take a stroll along the paths, view the magnificent array of native plants, sit in solitude, or pack a picnic and enjoy your surrounds – it is a really special place.

A small army of dedicated volunteers in partnership with council has been dedicating their time, love and passion for the garden for more than 60 years to ensure this peaceful bushland retreat is maintained. 

It is unfortunate, due to COVID restrictions that their 60th anniversary celebrations were cancelled. 

We are in awe of all the dedicated volunteers who have over the years cared for this precious garden - we are truly grateful. Keep up the great work.''

Below run some of Joe Mills great photos taken on his visits to Stony Range Flora and Fauna Reserve, but as stated above, this beautiful green space is now awash with flowers and well worth a visit, either to the Spring Festival on October 9th this year, or anytime you need to step away from the traffic and under the trees.

The Nursery is open on a Tuesday morning and Saturday afternoon when volunteers are present when you can get some great rootstock for your own garden and invest in helping the garden. 

Come and visit soon and keep up to date with what's happening on their Facebook page at:

references - extras

  1. TROVE - National Library of Australia
  2. State Library of New South Wales
  3. Stony Range History by Harry Kilby, kindly supplied by Stony Range Flora and Fauna Reserve Volunteers
  4. Stony Range Flora and Fauna Reserve Volunteers
  5. Stony Range Plan of Management
  6. Warringah Shire Council Minutes from Meetings 1908 to 1959
  7. Profiles of the Pioneers in Manly, Warringah and Pittwater (2013 revision) - Shelagh Champion OAM and George Champion OAM
  8. Tram Memorabilia - Historic Daylight Run For Sydney Light Rail Begins 80 Years After Last Tram To Narrabeen Closed
  9. Brookvale Oval Marks 111 Years As A Community Space With The Opening Of A New Stand And Performance Centre - Some Current + Older History
  10. Adrain (changed to Adrian in some records) family of Manly and Ivanhoe Park and Hotel: Boy Scouts - The Pre-Nippers Life Savers: Some Notes On Local Troops From 1909
  11. Shopping And Shops In Manly: Sales Times From 1856 To 1950 For A Fishing Village

A Few more Parks for the People:



Sir,-Among the many fine beaches that line our coast in close proximity to Sydney is Dee Why Beach. This beach, lying between Curl Curl and Narrabeen, Manly, is very popular with the local residents, and the present extension of the tram from Brook-vale will make Dee Why one of the most convenient beaches around Sydney, but un-fortunately the whole of the beach is practically hedged in by private property, the only access being by means of a reservation of 100ft of rocks. The same conditions pre-vail with regard to Dee Why Lagoon, a very fine sheet of water. The property immediately surrounding the beach is owned by the Salvation Army at present, and although the public have access to the land, it is on sufferance only, and this will not be al-lowed for long, as it is proposed to sub-divide and sell the land at an early date. If this is done the public will lose one of the finest sites for a park along the coast. There has been some good work done in the way of resumptions for recreation purposes, and it would be a boon to a large number of people if say, about 10 acres of the Dee Why headland was resumed and con-verted into a park, and it is in the hope that something may be done before it is too late that I have asked tor space in your paper to make this public.

I am, etc,

C. D. GREEN. DEE WHY BEACH. (1912, January 10). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 9. Retrieved from 

This is the Long Reef grounds, gazetted the same year, and gazetted again in 1980 for the waters and foreshores around this special place:


Long Reef, a picturesque stretch of land between Collaroy and Dee Why Beaches, which is to be resumed by the Government and the Warringah Shire Council for the purposes of a public recreation ground. Though somewhat remote from the city, the new area will doubtless And many appreciative devotees. NEW PUBLIC RECREATION GROUND. (1912, June 14). The Daily Telegraph (Sydney, NSW : 1883 - 1930), p. 11. Retrieved from 


IN pursuance of the provisions of section 16a (1) of the Fisheries and Oyster Farms Act, 1935, the area shown by hatching on the diagram hereunder is hereby declared to be the Long Reef Aquatic Reserve.

(1263) J. R. HALLAM, Minister for Agriculture.

NOTIFICATION OF LONG REEF AQUATIC RESERVE (1980, May 30). Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW : 1901 - 2001), p. 2787. Retrieved from 


PROPOSED Special Loan of £9,000.

IT is hereby notified that the Warringah Shire Council proposes to apply for authority, under section 180 of the Local Government Act, 1919, to borrow the sum of nine' thousand pounds (£9,000) for the purpose of acquiring, for public recreation purposes, certain lands in the vicinity of and adjoining Collaroy Beach, together with the buildings and other improvements thereon, and for purposes incidental to such acquisition and to such borrowing.

The lands proposed to be acquired are:—Lots 11 to 20 (inclusive) of the Picnic Grounds Estate (Deposited Plan No. 9,607; lots 1 to 6 (inclusive), section 2, of Mount Ramsay Estate; and an unnumbered lot situated between and bordering on Lot 1, mentioned above, of the Mount Ramsay Estate, and Lot 20 of the Picnic Grounds Estate. These lands are contiguous, and are bounded on the east by the Pacific Ocean and a 20 feet lane, on the south by Birdwood-avenue, on the west by Pittwater-road, and on the north by Lots 1 and 8, section 2, of the Mount Ramsay Estate, previously acquired by the Council for public recreation purposes.

The total estimated cost of the acquisitions is £18,000 Of the cost, the State Government has agreed to pay one-third, up to an amount not exceeding £6,000, and written undertakings from ratepayers and residents of Collaroy to make voluntary cash contributions to a total of £3,000, are held by the Council. The balance, namely, £9,000, the Council now proposes to borrow, and the State Government has agreed to guarantee the security of such borrowing.

The interest to be paid on such loan shall not exceed six and a half (6 1/2) per cent. per annum, and the Council proposes to arrange the loan on terms which shall provide for the repayment of principal and payment of interest, combined, in equal consecutive yearly or half-yearly instalments, extending over a period of thirty years. The amount of each such yearly instalment will be approximately £689 4s.

The Council does not propose to levy a loan rate for the purpose of repaying the loan, but proposes to apply the proceeds of the rentals obtainable from the buildings on the land towards paying the annual instalments of principal and interest. A conservative estimate of the annual value of these rentals, at the present timers £620, but it is anticipated that there will be a gradual substantial increase in such value, in progress with the notably rapid development of the place. It is proposed to pay the balance, if any. of the amount necessary for the annual repayment from the general fund of the Shire.

In the event of the Council not being able to raise a loan for a thirty years' term outright, it proposes to raise a loan for a period of ten years, but to make repayments of same on a thirty years' term basis, in accordance with the above arrangement. At the end of that period it will raise a renewal loan of the amount of the unrepaid principal for a further term of ten, fifteen, or twenty years (the period will depend . on the rate of interest then prevailing and other

circumstances), and so on, but the whole of the loans so raised will be repaid within thirty years of the raising of the original loan. The amount of the annual repayment instalment of principal with interest under such alternative arrangement will be approximately the same as that in the original arrangement.

A plan of the land proposed to be acquired and a description of the buildings thereon may be inspected at the Shire Hall, Brookvale, at any time during office hours.

Within one month of the publication of this notice any number, not less than 25 per cent., of the ratepayers of the Shire may petition the Council to take a poll of ratepayers as to whether the ratepayers approve of the loan.


President. R. G. JAMIESON, Shire Clerk. SHIRE OF WARRINGAH. (1924, November 28). Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW : 1901 - 2001), p. 5404. Retrieved from 


Proposed Special Loan of £1H,0QQ—Acquisition of LAND FOR PURPOSES OF DSTRICT PARK

NOTICE is hereby given that it is the intention of the Warringah Shire Council to apply for authority to borrow the sum of £19,030 for the purpose of resuming 131 acres or thereabouts, of land for public recreation purposes. The land referred to comprises the greater portion of that extensive low-lying area lying between Manly and Brookvale, adjacent to Pittwater-road, Condamine-street, Curl Curl Creek, and Osborne-road.

The rate of interest payable on the loan will not exceed 6 per cent, per annum, and it is proposed to arrange the loan on terms which will provide for the repayment of principal and the payment of interest, combined, by equal yearly or half-yearly instalments extending over a period of thirty years. The total of such instalment or instalments will not exceed £1,381 per year.

It is not proposed to levy a loan rate, but to pay such instalments from the general fund of the Council. Neither is it proposed to terminate the existing tenancies o\er the land, but to apply the income receivable from them towards the repayment of loan money plus interest. The income' receivable from present rentals totals £734 per year. In addition the Council of the Municipality of Manly has agreed to bear half the cost of the resumptions, and will pay to this Council, as each yearly or half-yearly repayment instalment falls due, a sum equal to half the amount of each such instalment after a deduction has been made therefrom of the amount of rentals income, if any, e.g.; if the yearly instalment be £1,381 and the rentals income £734, Manly Council will pay £323 10s. 0d., i.e., half the difference between these two sums, and a similar sum will be paid from this Council's general revenue.

A plan of the land proposed to be acquired and reports furnishing details of the proposal may be inspected at the Shire Hall, Brookvale, during office hours.

Within one month of the publication of this notice, any number not less than 25 per cent, of the ratepayers of the Shire, may petition the Council to take a poll of ratepayers as to whether the ratepayers approve of the loan. The number of ratepayers on the roll of the Shire is 13,488.

R. G. JAMIESON, Shire Clerk. Shire Hall, Brookvale, 8th May, 1928. SHIRE OF WARRINGAH. (1928, May 11). Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW : 1901 - 2001), p. 2103. Retrieved from 

Wild Life Sanctuary.

An area of about 80 acres, surrounding the Dee Why Lagoon, has been purchased for £6200 by the Warringah Shire Council from the Salvation Army, and will be preserved as a bird sanctuary.
The area purchased, it was stated, included the sand-spit between the lagoon and the beach, and the council will allow this to be used in the construction of a marine drive from Manly to Collaroy, which will be included in a relief work scheme to be under-taken with the assistance of a Government grant.

The council will have 20 years in which to pay, interest being at the rate of 4 per cent.

A condition attached to the sale is that the land may only be used for recreation purposes.

The agreement completed negotiations which have been in progress for a number of years, the council and a number of public bodies seeking to have the area dedicated as a public reserve. At one stage an ambitious scheme of dredging and reclamation was advanced. The council, however, informed an interested public body recently that its intention was to retain the area in its natural state. The lagoon itself has been the home of the Australian black swan. DEE WHY LAGOON. (1936, September 18). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 10. Retrieved from 

This is the one down along the beachfront at Dee Why, due for its 75th anniversary next year:

Sydney, 16th July, 1948.


IN" accordance with the provisions of the Public Trusts Act, 1897, I, Lieutenant-General John Northcott, Governor of the State of New South Wales, with the advice of the Executive Council, do hereby make the following Regulations for the management of Reserve No. 64,125 for Public Recreation and Public Hall, notified 1st September, 1933, and Reserve No. 66,633 for Public Recreation, notified 19th March, 1937, at Dee Why, known as Dee Why Memorial Park. P. 48-3,076.

Signed and sealed at Sydney, this 15th day of July, 1948.

(L.s.) J. NORTHCOTT, Governor. By His Excellency's Command,

W. P. SIIEAHAN, Minister for Lands. GOD SAVE THE KING!


1. The trustee shall meet from time to time, at any hour and place decided on, and at such meeting three shall form a quorum. The chairman and secretary of any three trustees may j convene a meeting at any time, provided, however, due notice of such meeting shall be posted or delivered to each trustee.

2. The trustees shall elect annually a chairman, honorary j secretary and treasurer, and a finance sub-committee, who shall have executive powers lo carry on the business of the trustees j between each meeting. The honorary secretary shall submit to each meeting a report of all transactions and business so carried out.

3. The trustees shall expend in the maintenance and improvement of the reserve all such sums of money as may be derived as revenue from such reserve, including fees, fines, donations or subscriptions.

4. The reserve shall be open at all times to the public, but may, if the trustees by resolutions so declare, be closed for q, period not exceeding three days at any one time, nor exceeding fifteen days in any one year; and the trustees may at any such time make a charge for admission to the reserve and exclude the public therefrom, except on payment of such charge as may be fixed by the trustees.

The trustees may, by resolution transfer their right to collect such, fees for admission to the reserve or to any part of it during any portion of the abovementioned period to any society, club or individual, upon such, terms as the trustees by resolution may determine.

Provided that the fees for admission in all such cases shall be determine^ by the trustees and the proceeds received by the trustees under this regulation shall be devoted to the maintenance or improvement of the reserve as the trustees shall direct. Any person entering such reserve when the public shall have been excluded as aforesaid shall be liable to a penalty of not more than five pounds.

5. Any person destroying or damaging any fence, enclosure, tree or shrub, or other improvement on the reserve shall be liable to a penalty not exceeding ten pounds.

6. No person shall erect any tent, booth, or stall on the' reserve without the permission of the trusts. Any person who shall, without the permission of the trustees, be found occupying any portion of the reserve, either by residing on or by erecting any tent, hut or building thereon shall be liable to a penalty not exceeding ten pounds.

7. Any person who shall remove any rock, stone, earth, or other material from the reserve without first obtaining permission from the trustees, shall on conviction, forfeit and pay a penalty not exceeding ten pounds.

8. Every person in the reserve in a state of intoxication, or behaving in a disorderly manner, or creating or taking part in any disturbance or obstructing any officer, or interfering, not being a player, with any game or sport therein, or swearing or making use of profane or obscene language or insulting words or gestures towards any person may be forthwith removed from the reserve and shall be liable to a penalty not exceeding five pounds.

9. No person shall hold any performance or entertainment of any kind on the reserve without a written permission from the trustees.

10. The trustees may with the consent of the Minister, set apart any portion of the reserve for the purpose of cricket, football, or other lawful game or sport, and from time to time grant to any club or association of clubs upon such conditions as the trustees may think fit, the use of the grounds so set apart, and authorise the erection, alteration and removal by such club or association of clubs of any building or pavilion thereon; but the trustees shall have power at any time to revoke such grant or authority, and to order the removal of such, buildings or pavilions; and nothing in such grant or authority shall limit or affect the right of entry or control over the said grounds by the trustees, their servants or agents.

11. No person shall play any game of any kind on the reserve on Sunday without the consent of the trustees.

12. No person shall, without the permission of the trustees erect within the reserve any booth for the sale of intoxicating liquors.

33. No person shall bring* any intoxicating liquors on the reserve without the consent of the trustees.

14. The trustees shall keep proper accounts of all moneys received and all moneys disbursed in connection with the reserve, and if so required by the Minister for Lands shall furnish to him the vouchers for all moneys expended, and a certified copy of their accounts for any year.

15. All moneys received in connection with the reserve shall be paid into some bank to the credit of an account in the name of the trustees of reserve and cheques drawn upon the account shall be signed by at least two trustees.

16. All accounts prior to payment shall be passed at a meeting of the trustees, provided, however, that the chairman may authorise payment of accounts in cases of urgency and submit such accounts for confirmation at a subsequent meeting.

11. The finance sub-committee shall prepare an annual statement of receipts and expenditure and a balance-sheet which shall be exhibited at the annual meeting by the trustees.

18. The charges for the use of the hall specified in the Schedule thereto annexed shall be payable in advance to the trustees, but the trustees may if they see fit remit the charges wholly or in part in any case where such use is required for a charitable, patriotic or local public purpose.

19. Any person or body obtaining permission to use the hall or reserve shall on termination of such use leave the reserve or hall and all fittings and furniture thereon or therein in the same state of cleanliness and order as when such use was entered upon.

20. No person shall cut, break or deface, injure, destroy or defile any building or any fittings or furniture of any building on the reserve or any sign, notice, placard, seat, gate, post, or any other property on the reserve.

21. Any person who without the permission or consent of the trustees or any officer of the trustees duly authorised in that behalf, or without having paid any lawful charge for admission shall enter or remain upon any building on the reserve, or who shall neglects or refuse to pay such charge upon demand thereof by such officer may forthwith be removed from the reserve or building by any officer of the trustees or a police constable and in addition thereto shall be liable to a penalty not exceeding five pounds.

22. All applications for use of the hall shall be made in writing to the executive officers or to any one of them, but the trustees may approve of any application for specific dates from organisations holding regular meetings, such applications only being required in writing once, and approval for use must be in writing from the secretary.

23. Any person committing a breach of the foregoing regulations for no other penalty is thereby expressly provided shall be liable to a penalty not exceeding ten pounds. REGULATIONS FOR THE MANAGEMENT OF RESERVE No. 64,125 FOR PUBLIC RECREATION AND PUBLIC HALL AND RESERVE No. 66,633 FOR PUBLIC RECREATION AT DEE WHY, KNOWN AS DEE WHY MEMORIAL PARK. (1948, July 16). Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW : 1901 - 2001), p. 1745. Retrieved from 


Warringah Shire Council: Proposed Resumption of  Land at Dee Why.

HIS Excellency the Governor, with the advice of the Executive Council and in pursuance of the provisions of the Local Government Act, 1919, has approved of the Warringah Shire Council's causing a notice of resumption of the land described in the Schedule hereto, together with a description of such land, to be published in the Government Gazette and in a newspaper circulating in the area in which the land is located, such land being required by the Warringah Shire Council for the purpose of the erection of a Shire Hall and offices for the transaction of the Council's business, public garden and recreation space and a site for the accommodation of vehicles.- (S. 56-2,142)

J. B. RENSHAW, Minister for Local Government. Department of Local Government, Sydney, 23rd November, 1956.


All that piece or parcel of land situate in the Shire of Warringah, parish of Manly Cove and county of Cumberland, being part of the land in plan annexed to dealing A.854,821: Commencing on the north-western side of Pittwater-road at the easternmost corner of that land; and bounded thence on the south-east by part of that side of that road bearing 220 degrees 31 minutes 396 feet f inch to its curved intersection with the northern side of Howard-avenue; again on the southeast by that curved intersection being 36 feet 9& inches of the arc of a circle having a radius of 37 feet 7-J inches, the centre of which lies to the north-west of the chord which bears 248 degrees 30 minutes 40 seconds for a distance of 35 feet 3 1/2 inches; on the south by the said northern side of Howard-avenue successively bearing 276 degrees 30 minutes 20 seconds 205 feet 6$ inches and 276 degrees 25 minutes 30 seconds 49 feet 5$ inches; on the north-west by a line bearing 11 degrees 22 minutes 15 seconds 316 feet 6J inches; on the south-west by a line bearing 280 degrees 24 minutes 20 seconds 65 feet; on the west by a line and the eastern boundary of lot 1, section 7, deposited plan 9,125, in all bearing 352 degrees 33 minutes 20 seconds 274 feet 11 inches to the south-eastern boundary of lot 5, section 7 of the said deposited plan 9,125; again on the north-west by part of that boundary and the south-eastern boundaries of lots 6, 7 and 8, section 7 of that deposited plan bearing 80 degrees 56 minutes 169 feet 2| inches; again on the south-west by the north-eastern boundary of the said lot 8 bearing 345 degrees 13 minutes 20 seconds 187 feet 5| inches; again on the north-west by the south-eastern side of the Kingsway bearing 73 degrees 37 minutes 30 seconds 66 feet i inch to the westernmost corner of lot 1, section 1, deposited plan 9,125; on the north-east by the south-western boundaries of that lot and lots 2, 3, 4 and 5, section 1, deposited plan 9,125, bearing 165 degrees 13 minutes 20 seconds 304 feet 9^ inches; on the north by part of the southern boundary of the said lot 5, bearing 88 degrees 20 minutes 134 feet inches to the northwestern corner of lot 6, section 1. deposited plan 9,125; on the east by the western boundaries of that lot and lots 7 and 8, section 1, deposited plan 9,125, bearing 178 degrees 20 minutes 150 feet; again on the north by part of the southern boundary 4 of the said lot 8 bearing 88 degrees 20* minutes 68 feet i inch to the westernmost corner of lot 9, section 1, deposited plan 9,125; again on the north-east by the south-western boundary of that lot bearing 130 degrees 31 minutes 149 feet 8J inches to the point of commencement',—having an area of 5 acres 3 roods 2 perches or thereabouts and said to be in the possession of the Salvation Army (N.S.W.), and shown on plan with the Department of Local Government, Sydney. (1352) LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT, 1919. (1956, November 23). Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW : 1901 - 2001), p. 3453. Retrieved from 

Farrell-Malcom-Try family notes

TO be sold pursuant to a decree of the Supreme Court of New South Wales,—made in a cause wherein John Thomas Malcolm, Sydney Alexander Malcolm, Jane Ferrier Malcolm, and Alfred Ashmore Malcolm, infants, by John Williams, their next friend, are plaintiffs, and Edmund Charles Harris, and Mary Harris his wife, late, and in the Bill called Mary Malcolm, widow, are defendants, by original Bill; and between John Thomas Malcolm, Sydney Alexander Malcolm, Jane Ferrier Malcolm, and Alfred Ashmore Malcolm, infants, by John Williams, their next friend, are plaintiffs, and Edmund Charles Harris and Mary Harris his wife, late, and in the Bill called Mary Malcolm, widow, and Henry Dodds are defendants,—by order of Revivor, with the approbation of Arthur Todd Holroyd, Esquire, the Master in Equity of the said Court,—by Messrs. Richardson and Wrench, at their Auction Rooms, Pitt-street, Sydney, on Monday, the 17th day of April next, certain freehold properly, situate at Darling Point, near Sydney, late the property of John Cleland Malcolm, deceased; particulars whereof may be seen at the office of the Master in Equity, Supreme Court House, King-street, Sydney, of Messrs. Levy & De Lissa, solicitors, Belle Chambers, Pitt-street, Sydney, and of Messrs. Bradley & Son, solicitors, Margaret-street, Sydney, and of the Auctioneers.—Dated the 15th day of March, 1871.

ARTHUR T. HOLROYD, Master in Equity. TO be sold pursuant to a decree of the Supreme Court of New South Wales,—made in a cause wherein John Thomas (1871, March 21). New South Wales Government Gazette (Sydney, NSW : 1832 - 1900), p. 644. Retrieved from

John Farrell II, the younger son of John and Martha Farrell, married David Foley’s daughter Mary Ann at St Mary’s Church on 8 February 1850, witnesses being Francis Collins and Mary Ann’s sister Joanna Foley, both residents of Pittwater.

After the murder of Mary Ann Farrell’s father, David Foley, in November 1849, the Farrells appear to have run their own and the Foley farm as one, enjoying the use of hundreds of acres of land for their cattle. The 700 acre farm was leased for a short time by Henry Bate and Fred Berkelman in 1858-59, but their venture failed, according to Henry’s daughter, because of cattle thieves who frequently drove off and killed their cattle. For a time, a caretaker named Lush was installed; then in August 1862 James Therry, a relative of Father J.J. Therry, became the tenant of Mona Vale. He spent some time renovating the homestead for his large family, but before they moved in, it was burnt down, on 5 November 1862. John Farrell II was suspected, but it could not be proved. Farrell made it quite clear to Therry that if he stayed, he could expect further injury. The Therry family persevered, living in tents and a makeshift hovel until they could build another house. However, the feud grew worse, with charges and counter charges brought to the Courts, and eventually John Farrell II appeared in the Central Criminal Court on 28 December 1864, charged with stealing and killing ten cows. He was sentenced to imprisonment with hard labour for seven years, but inexplicably he was released after only four and a half years, in spite of a memorandum by Mr Justice Wise that the term of imprisonment should not be shortened. 

See - The Murder of David Foley by Shelagh Champion OAM and Maria Louisa Therry - Pittwater Matriarch

During the trial of Mary Ann Farrell, evidence was given that carcases and bones from the slaughtered calves were buried around fruit trees that were being established to the north of Manly, on land that was sometimes referred to as “Farrells’ paddock”.

A search in the N.S.W. Land Titles Office resulted in the following information:

The 100 acres was originally granted to Charles Andrews and Christopher Skally. They sold 10 acres of their grant on 2 August 1847 to Isaac Lowry for £10. Two weeks later Lowry sold it to James Wheeler for £16. Wheeler sold it to Henry Gilbert Smith on 12 May 1853 for £30. H.G. Smith sold it to Thomas Youl on 28 February 1855 for £200; Youl mortgaged the 10 acres to George Turnbull on 3 November 1858 for £329. Youl defaulted and died, then George Turnbull died. The executors of George Turnbull’s estate sold the 10 acres at public auction on 12 November 1861, the purchaser being Richard Driver the younger, for £145. This was apparently the same Richard Driver who was the solicitor defending the Farrells on cattle stealing charges, whom John Farrell II had known since childhood. The Farrells appear to have had the use of this land, although they did not own it at that stage. On 14 July 1871 Richard Driver sold the 10 acres to James Farrell for £100, and he conveyed it as a gift to his sister, Mary Jane Malcolm, on 25 May 1886. At no time did any part of Andrews’ and Skally’s grant belong to John Farrell II.

“Farrell’s paddock” is bounded by the following present day streets: Balgowlah Road on the west, Alexander Street on the north, Collingwood Street on the east, and a line between Pacific Parade and Pine Street on the south.

After John Farrell II was released from gaol, he applied for a licence for a public house at Manly Beach, but was refused by the Water Police Court. [SMH 2 Feb 1870] Then in March 1870 the licence of the New Steyne Hotel in the Corso, Manly, was transferred from George Watkins to John Farrell. [SMH 31 March 1870] The Chief Justice, Sir Alfred Stephen, commented that not only had John Farrell II been set at liberty before he had served his full term of imprisonment, but “more than that, that the very same person had now a public house at Manly Beach.” He queried whether Farrell should have been granted a licence by a bench of magistrates. [SMH 18 Feb 1871].

John Farrell II still owned the family home in Macquarie Street, and he mortgaged this for £600 on 27 October 1873. This no doubt assisted him on 17 November 1873 to purchase his first land in the Corso, portion of Lot 7, for £66-10-0. [LTO Book 139 No.120] This land had a frontage of 25 feet to the Corso, on the side opposite to St. Matthews, and a depth of 99ft 6in. to the lane at the rear. The remainder of Lot 7, measuring 15ft. frontage to the Corso, was purchased by Sarah Savage, and on this site she conducted a fruit-shop. Farrell purchased Lot 6 in the Corso on 19 June 1874 for £200. [LTO Book 143 No.172] On 25 July 1874 John Farrell advertised to let at Manly Beach a new stone house of 8 rooms, kitchen, stables and out-buildings; also, a furnished cottage of 4 rooms and kitchen. On 24 April and 24 May 1875 he advertised to let furnished a large stone house, 10 rooms, stable, and every necessity. [SMH] In October 1875 he tendered the house, “situated on the Corso next to the Colonnade Hotel”, as premises for Manly Post Office, requiring rent of £120 per annum. [AA(NSW) SP32/1 Manly] It was advertised again on 5 November 1875, “apply Colonnade Hotel”. [SMH]

The Colonnade Hotel must have been on either Lot 6 or 7, as Lot 8 was not purchased until 31 January 1876, also for £200. [LTO Book 161 No.215] Farrell moved into the Colonnade Hotel in October or November 1875, and remained there until 1882, when he became the licensee of the Bridge Hotel, Western Street, Balmain. The Adrians moved to the Colonnade in 1884 and renamed it the Ivanhoe Hotel; the Farrells remained the owners, however, and did not sell out to  the Adrians. Lots 6 and 8 in the Corso were both later conveyed by Mary Ann Farrell to her daughter, Hannah Malcolm. The butcher’s shop was apparently on Lot 7, as it was conveyed by John II to John III on 6 September 1880, for £700. [LTO Book 208 No.150] He later leased “the premises known as Farrell’s Butcher Shop, Corso,” to a chemist, Charles J. Carroll. [7.]

A little further along the Corso is the establishment of Mr. Charles J. Carroll, who, as chemist and druggist, has built up a large connection during the three years he has been in business. This is the same Mr. Carroll whose "Instantaneous Headache Cure" has afforded relief to numbers of suffering humanity. Apart from his profession of chemist and druggist. Mr. Carroll is a skilled surgical and mechanical dentist, and residents can have their teeth attended to on terms as advantageous as can be obtained in the city.



MANLY—THE QUEEN OF AUSTRALIAN WATERING PLACES. (1899, February 25).Australian Town and Country Journal (Sydney, NSW : 1870 - 1907), , p. 35. Retrieved from 

John Farrell III inherited the Colonnade Hotel when his father died in 1889. Unable to make bank demands during the Depression, he mortgaged the hotel and butcher shop to his sister Hannah, who was left widowed when her husband John Malcolm died two years after their wedding. She owned the hotel (later renamed the Ivanhoe Hotel) until her death in 1933.

John II and Mary Ann’s first child, Sarah Ann, was born on January 23rd 1850, and baptized on February 9th. She later married John Thomas Collins. Other children were John (John Farrell III, often known as Johnny, b June 8th 1851), Hannah Martha (b Oct 24th 1852, married John T. Malcolm 1881), Mary Jane (b. Jan 4th 1854, married Sydney A. Malcolm 1881), James (b.1855 or 56), Daniel (b. June 3rd 1857), and Thomas (b.1858 or 59).

John Thomas and Sydney married sisters Hannah Martha and Mary Jane Farrell. Sydney Alexander Malcolm and Mary Jane, nee Farrell, married at Manly in 1881. They had three children, Jane (1885-1967), Pearl (1888-?) who died in infancy, and Bede Reginald Stanley (1889-1949). 

John T Malcolm and Hannah had one daughter, Cicely, before he died in 1883 - the death registered at Ryde [ NSW BDM’s: MALCOLM JOHN 7174/1883  JOHN MARY registered at RYDE]. An item dated 1883, held by the State Library of NSW in the records of John Thomas Malcolm (1854-1883) being a metal stencil of his name and a metal plaque engraved to Alma Alice Ashmore for her birthday in 1883 (Call No.: MLMSS 6680/1) – State Library of NSW

NSW BDMs - marriages and records provides:


MALCOLM — FARRELL. —October 25, at Manly, by special license, by the Rev. Edmund WalshSydney Alexander, second son of the late John C. Malcolm, Esq., of Sydney, to Mary Jane, youngest daughter of John Farrell, Esq., Manly. Family Notices (1881, November 22). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 1. Retrieved from 

John Malcolm (?-1842), chemist, was born in Scotland. He served as a surgeon's mate on board HMS Hobart, 1797-1799, and emigrated to Sydney in 1824. His son, John Cleland Malcolm (1832-1867), a seaman and businessman, married Mary Binning of Bowenfels, N.S.W., with whom he had four children: John Thomas (1854-1883); Sydney Alexander (1856-1891); Jean or Jane Ferrier, known as Jenny (1859-?) and Alfred Ashmore (1862-?). 


In the Equity Court this afternoon a case in reference to a settlement came on for hearing before Mr. Justice Owen., The plaintiff was Sydney Alexander Malcolm, and the defendants Mary Jane Malcolm, wife of the plaintiff, Jane Malcolm, an infant, and Llewellyn Charles Russell Jones. The statement of claim set out that the plaintiff, on January 30, 1882, made a voluntary settlement of all his property on his wife and children, if any, retaining a certain interest in the property himself. At the time of executing the indenture the plaintiff was in a weak and enfeebled condition of body and mind, and was unaware of the full purport and effect of the indenture.  The plaintiff was at the time of the execution and until recently under the impression that the indenture was in the nature of a testamentary document, and that he could at any time vary or rescind it. At the time of the execution of the indenture there were no children born to the plaintiff and his wife, but there was now one child, Jane Malcolm, the defendant named. The plaintiff was in a very feeble state of health, and was desirous of revoking the indenture and of making a more equitable and fair disposition of his property, especially with relation to his wife, who under the indenture was most inadequately provided for in the events which had happened. The indenture deals with and includes the whole of the estate and property of the plaintiff, and the annual income therefrom' was £2000 or thereabouts. The plaintiff had certainly never received anything approaching the sum of £2000 in any one year, and he had never been provided by the defendant, L. C. R. Jones, with any accounts, and he was dissatisfied with his management of the trust, and was unwilling to leave the sole charge of the trust in his hands after his death. The plaintiff asks that the indenture might be delivered up and cancelled, and it might decree the defendant, Russell Jones, to furnish full and perfect accounts of all moneys received by him and all moneys expended ; that the defendant, Russell Jones, transfer all moneys to the plaintiff. The only defendant who filed a statement of defence was Llewellyn Charles Russell Jones, who denied that at the time of executing the indenture the plaintiff was in a weak enfeebled condition of body or mind, or was unaware of the full purport of the indenture, or was then or at any time under the impression that the indenture was in the nature of a testamentary document, or could at any time be rescinded or varied, or that the disposition of his property could he varied by him, or that it was under any such belief the plaintiff executed the indenture, on the contrary the plaintiff was fully aware that the indenture contained no power of revocation, and that it was irrevocable by him. He was also fully aware of all the provisions contained in the settlement, the same having been inserted on his express instructions. Defendant did not admit that the annual income' arising from the estate was or had been L2000, or any sum approaching thereto. The whole of the net income had been always regularly paid to the plaintiff. The plaintiff had frequently investigated the accounts of the trust estate, and the defendant made full disclosure to him of all matters relating to it. The defendant had always been and was now, ready and willing and hereby offered to account to the plaintiff in the premises, and to submit in all things to the judgment or orders of the court, and he claimed to have his costs, charges, and expenses provided for. 

The evidence of the plaintiff taken de beno esse stated that when he made the indenture he was generally " half sprung," and before he signed the document he had had six "nips." 

Dr. M'Keller said he attended the plaintiff before and after his marriage, and he was usually intoxicated or suffering from the effects of intoxication. At any time for years he never saw him free from drink or from its effects. He was a man of exceedingly feeble intellect. 

Several other witnesses were called, who stated that the plaintiff was of intemperate habits. 

For the defence, James Middleton was called. He stated that he had a conversation with the plaintiff, who said he had made a mistake in marrying. The ceremony took place in a public-house, and he was drunk at the time. He asked witness about a settlement, and gave witness instructions to get the document prepared for him

Mr. Manning, who appeared  for the plaintiff, said that he withdrew all charges, if any, against Mr. Russell Jones, and it was never intended that there should be any charges against him at all. The case stands as part heard. SETTING ASIDE AN INDENTURE. (1889, June 18). The Australian Star (Sydney, NSW : 1887 - 1909), p. 6. Retrieved , from


The case of Malcolm v. Malcolm has been before the Equity Court for the past few days. It was a case in which Sydney Alexander Malcolm made an application to set aside a settlement which lie had made on Mary Jane Malcolm, his wife, and Jane Malcolm, his daughter, Llewellyn Charles Russell Jones being trustee. The case was concluded this morning, when his Honor, in delivering judgment, said that although the plaintiff had been drunk, and heavily drunk at times, yet he was capable of recovering from it so as to become a first-rate rifle shot and to have a perfectly firm and steady hand. There was strong evidence that on the day the deed was made the plaintiff was perfectly sober and capable of transacting business. Under those circumstances what ground was there for the court to suppose that he did not understand that the deed which he was executing was a final and complete disposition of his property. He believed that the plaintiff was in a state of mind to understand that the deed was an irrevocable one. He dismissed the suit with costs, the costs of the defendant Russell Jones, as being the trustee of the settlement, should be as between solicitor and client. A DEED OF SETTLEMENT. (1889, June 21). The Australian Star (Sydney, NSW : 1887 - 1909), p. 5. Retrieved from


(Before Mr. Justice Owen.)

MALCOLM V. MALCOLM AND JONES.-This intricate suit was resumed on June 20 ; numerous counsel being engaged on behalf of the various parties interested. Sydney Alexander Malcolm, the plaintiff, applied for an order to set aside a settlement he had made on his wife, Mary Jane Malcolm ; Jane Malcolm, and Llewellyn Charles Jones being the trustees. It was set forth for the plaintiff that, according to an indenture dated January 30, 1882, he made a voluntary settlement of his property on the defendants. Plaintiff was then in a weak condition of body and mind, and did not know the full effect of what he was doing. Until lately he thought that the indenture was a sort of testamentary document which he could at any time alter or rescind. He had no children at the time, and there was now only one child. As no provision had been made for revocation in the indenture, his Honor was now asked to set such indenture aside. The property was worth £2000 a year, but the plaintiff never got anything like that amount from it ; and he was consequently dissatisfied with the manner in which it was managed. An affidavit filed by the trustee (Jones) sot forth that the plaintiff was not in a weak condition at the time of signing the indenture, and that he had always been paid the full amount accruing to him. It was sworn that plaintiff was, about the time of signing, drinking, and not responsible for his actions. After more lengthy addresses had been delivered, His Honor ruled that the plaintiff understood that he was making an irrevocable deed of settlement; and that being so the Court must be satisfied that the settlement was one which could, not now be set aside. There was evidence that the plaintiff had been drunk, and heavily drunk, at times ; but that he was capable of recovering and become capable for the transaction of business. His Honor consequently dismissed the suit, with costs. IN EQUITY. (1889, June 29). Australian Town and Country Journal (Sydney, NSW : 1870 - 1919), p. 12. Retrieved from

Sydney Malcolm passed away in 1891 - the death was registered at Manly - NSW BDM's:


In the Supreme Court of New South Wales.
In the will of Sydney Alexander Malcolm, late of Greendale, near Manly, in the Colony of New South Wales, gentleman, deceased.

APPLICATION will be made, after fourteen days from the publication hereof, that probate of the last will of the abovenamed deceased may be granted to Stephen Sullivan, of Manly aforesaid, grocer, the sole executor named in the said will.
Proctors for the said Executor,
29, O'Connell-street, Sydney.
4202 6s. 6d.
PROBATE JURISDICTION. (1891, May 19). New South Wales Government Gazette (Sydney, NSW : 1832 - 1900), p. 3768. Retrieved from

Mary Jane passed away in 1930:


MALCOLM. - October 16, 1930, at the residence of her daughter, Mrs. G. A. Try, Brookvale House, Brookvale, Mary Jane Malcolm, aged 74 years. Family Notices (1930, October 17). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 10. Retrieved from

MALCOLM. - The Relatives and Friends of the late Mrs MARY JANE MALCOLM are kindly invited to attend her funeral; to leave Mary Immaculate Church, Manly, THIS FRIDAY, at 2.30 p.m., for Catholic Cemetery, Manly. Motor Funeral. WOOD COFFILL LIMITED, Motor Funeral Directors. Family Notices (1930, October 17). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 9. Retrieved from

Mary Jane Malcolm - Date of Death 16/10/1930, Granted on 16/06/1949

It was in this area that her brother Daniel Farrell built his stone house, also called "Inverness", which was later to become Manly Leagues Club in 1957, and which he had only just completed when he died. Daniel lived at Brookvale House with his sister’s family and cousin Emma Rogers, the carer for Mary Jane’s children Bede and Jane (Pansy). He passed away in December 1913. 

Council records state that:

Daniel Farrell lived at Brookvale House with his sister’s family and cousin Emma Rogers, carer for Mary Jane’s children. Daniel took great interest in the local area, later becoming president of both the Brookvale Progress Association and the Manly to Pittwater Tramway League. Emma later bought land at Brookvale and with her cousin Daniel, built a stone house  called “Yarrawa” but later named ‘Inverness’.

The family were in court again when Mary Jane’s daughter Jane took her Aunt Emma to court, demanding the land be transferred to her as she had lent Daniel money to build the house. The court ordered Emma to pay Jane £550 alongside selling the property. 

FARRELL.-December 23, at his residence, Yorrowa, Pittwater-road, Brookvale, Daniel Farrell, aged 49 years. Family Notices. (1913, December 24). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 12. Retrieved from 

As the Farrell-Malcolm-Try family owned the land all around the original Stony Range site this same structure may have been built of stone from the same site:


Mr. D. Farrell, who died at Brookvale yesterday; as a hobby set himself the task over 15 years ago of building with his own hands the big stone, house to be seen at Brookvale on the Pittwater-road. Through the years he patiently carried on the novel task, quarrying the stone, and doing everything possible for one man to do in connection with the building. Year by year the structure, which was always an object of interest to passers-by, slowly reared Itself up, and within the last few weeks workmen have been engaged in giving the house its final touches. Mr. Farrell thus died just as the fruition of his long and patient work was in sight.  BROOKVALE'S HISTORIC HOUSE. (1913, December 24). The Sun (Sydney, NSW : 1910 - 1954), p. 1 (FINAL EXTRA). Retrieved from 


A pathetic Interest attaches to the death of Mr. D. Farrell, of Brookvale, which' took place on Tuesday. Fifteen years ago he undertook to build a house entirely by his own labor, and he died just as his work was about to be completed. Mr. Farrell was one of the interesting pioneers of the Pittwater district, of which he was a native.. His mother, the "oldest Inhabitant" of the neighborhood, .died only the other day, 'aged 92. The stone building, situated alongside the Pittwater-road, is always an object of interest to passers-by. Mr. Farrell quarried the stone, shaped it, and built the structure without any material help from anyone, working on it from day to day and year to rear.

The building is a capacious "T" shared -affair, designed by Mr. Farrell, with fresh air and good lighting as prime considerations. It has a frontage of nearly 70 feet, and a hall depth of 32 feet. The annexe at the back has also a similar depth.  The three ground floor rooms are large and lofty, measuring 32 feet by 19, 18 by 18, and 16 by 18 respectively. Upstairs there is also a big room, and several comfortable nooks. Alongside the house, the walls of another large building, to be used for stable and motor-car purposes, were put up by Mr. Farrell. The dimensions of the buildings given afford a good idea of the exacting task accomplished by the patient, but enthusiastic, homebuilder. Mr. Farrell had an up-to-date smithy and forge on the .premises, fitted with steam , power. He also was his own engineer and tradesman, and was able to effect all his own wheelwright repairs, and other necessary requirements. A HOUSE BUILT BY ONE MAN—PATHETIC END OF A 15-YEAR HOBBY. (1913, December 28). The Sun (Sydney, NSW : 1910 - 1954), p. 12. Retrieved from

Yarrawa/Yoorowa, his house in Pittwater Road, was for sale in February 1914 due to the bankruptcy of Daniel Farrell’s estate. Also for sale were an engine, cart, dray, crane, drill and two foxhounds. - SMH, 12 February 1914, p12

Jane married George Augustine (Gus) Try in 1911, with whom she had four children, who also had children 

A very interesting and pretty wedding was celebrated on Tuesday, April 18, at the Church of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, Manly, when Jane (Pansy), only daughter of Mrs and the late Mr S. A. Malcolm, of 'Coolabah,' Brookvale, was married to George Augustine, younger son of Mrs J. Try, of Double Bay, Sydney. ... A POPULAR MANLY WEDDING. (1911, April 27). The Catholic Press (Sydney, NSW : 1895 - 1942), p. 25. Retrieved from 

Children of the marriage:
TRY AUGUSTINE G 4485/1912 GEORGE A JANE registered at: GRAFTON
TRY JOSEPH L 4715/1913 GEORGE A JANE registered at: GRAFTON
TRY MARY L11167/1918 GEORGE A JANE registered at: MANLY
TRY AUGUSTINE K 32674/1920 GEORGE A JANE registered at: MANLY

TRY.-On January 30th, at "Runnymede" Private Hospital (Grafton), to Mr. and Mrs. G. A. Try, of "Riverview," Grafton, a son, Augustine Gareth. Family Notices (1912, February 3). Clarence and Richmond Examiner (Grafton, NSW : 1889 - 1915), p. 1. Retrieved from

TRY.- On the 2nd March, at their residence, Riverview, Grafton, to Mr. and Mrs. G. A. Try—a son (Joseph Lancelot). Family Notices (1913, March 24). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 8. Retrieved from

Their first born child passed away in 1914:


TRY.—September 20th, accidentally, at his father's residence, "Brookvale," Pittwater Road, Brookvale, Manly, Augustine Gareth, dearly loved son of George Augustine and Jane Try, aged 2½ years.  Family Notices (1914, September 21). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 8. Retrieved from


On Sunday, at Brookvale, Augustine Gareth Try, a child two and a half years of age, was drowned in a creek near his parents' residence. The child was missed a few minutes before the dinner hour, and on a search being made his body was found floating in the water. All efforts at resuscitation proved futile. AN INFANT DROWNED. (1914, September 22). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 5. Retrieved from


George Augustine Try, 2 years and eight months old, was found drowned in a creek running through his father's grounds at Pittwater-road, Brookvale. The City Coroner yesterday found that the boy died from drowning accidentally caused. BOY DROWNED. (1914, October 2). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 6. Retrieved from

George passed away in 1941:


TRY.—August 15, 1941 (suddenly), George Augustine Try, late of Brookvale House, Brookvale, beloved husband of Jane Try, and father of Lynette, Lance, A.l.F. abroad, and Ken, R.A.A.F., abroad, aged 57 years. R.I.P. Family Notices (1941, August 16). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 20. Retrieved from


Mr. George Augustine Try, of 'Brookvale House,' Brookvale, who died suddenly in his office on Friday last at the age of 58 years, was secretary of the New South Wales Dried Fruits and Dairy Products Boards. The late Mr. Try was educated at Marist Brothers' High School, Darlinghurst, and joined the Department of Lands as junior clerk in 1901, being afterwards appointed as a draftsman.

He entered the service of the Water Conservation and Irrigation Commission in 1913 as survey draftsman and was appointed first clerk at the head office of the commission in 1918. On the passing of the Dried Fruits Act in 1927, Mr. Try became the first secretary of the Dried Fruits Board which position he held at the time of his death. He was also secretary of the Dairy Products Board from the inception of that board in 1934. Mr. Try was Joint secretary of the referendum committee in New South Wales during the Federal referendum on marketing in 1937 and in 1938 acted as organising secretary of the Empire Producers' Conference, which was held in Sydney during that year.

A keen follower of Rugby Union in the Manly district, he was, in his younger days, a member of the Fitzroy team. Both the dried fruits and the dairying industries have frequently placed on record their appreciation of the splendid work carried out by the late Mr Try for their producers and many telegrams of appreciation have been received from kindred bodies in other States. 

Mr. Try is survived by his widow two sons (Lance. A.I.F. abroad and Ken, R.A.A.F. abroad) and one daughter (Lynette). The funeral was held at the Manly Cemetery on Saturday afternoon, following a service at the Mary Immaculate Church, Manly, and was largely attended. There were many floral tributes. OBITUARY (1941, August 21). Daily Advertiser (Wagga Wagga, NSW : 1911 - 1954), p. 3. Retrieved from

TRY.—August 15, 1941 (suddenly), GEORGE AUGUSTINE TRY, late of Brookvale House, Brookvale, beloved husband of Jane Try, and father of Lynette, Lance (A.I.F. Abroad), and Ken (R.A.A.F., Abroad) ; aged 57 years.—R.I.P. Family Notices (1941, August 28). The Catholic Press (Sydney, NSW : 1895 - 1942), p. 28. Retrieved from

Jane Try passed away in 1967:


Warringah Shire Council:

18.Deewhy Progress Association 3/9/18, (1) re need for gravelling ballast in Fish Road, ( 2) re need for erecting a rail fence along Delmar Parade West, above stone wall; Referred to the Engineer for report. - 19.Soldiers Settlement Progress Association, French's Forest, 23/8/18, (1) complaining of straying cattle at Settlement; (2) requesting repairing of pump at 10M.Road, and complaining that night-cart tine are washed at the trough; (3) complaining that large number of vehicles travelling between the Spit and the Settlement carry no lights at night, (4) re culvert between 8 and 9 M.P. Referred to the Overseer and Inspector for report. L 20.M. A. Jail is 7/9/18, on condition of road and footpath in West Street, Brookvale 8226; Referred to the Overseer for report. 21.Forest Progress Assn. 31/8/18, re need of road to Armitage's property, off Pymble Road, ( 2) re bad state of Brown's Road, (3) need for sign post opposite school indicating way to Pymble and to the Spit Resolved that Dr. Arthur be again written to ....

Local Government\Department; 3.6/9/18, & 20/9/18, forwarding copy of letter from Deewhy Progress Association, protesting against Council purchasing for park purposes, Mr. Macpherson's land at Narrabeen, and inviting Council's comment:Resolved (on the motion\of councillor Atkin seconded by Councillor Duffy),. that a reply be sent to the Department, stating (1) that the Council does not consider the price too high;,. (2) that the only reserve in the near vicinity is "Birdwood Park"; (3) that the Association's statement of the cost of filling in would be considerable, owing to the land being low, and liable to, be flooded, is not borne out by facts;'(4) pointing out the easy terms of the purchase

Stony Range Regional Botanical Garden: Some History On How A Reserve Became An Australian Plant Park + Current Photos by Joe Mills, Harry Kilby, Lots of help from Stony Range Flora and Fauna Reserve Volunteers and Council, and threads collected and collated by A J Guesdon, 2022.