The stone cottage in Victoria Park as it was in 1934, with virtual Christmas decorations added in 2022 (source: City of Sydney Archives)

by Judy Vergison, Glebe Society Events Co-ordinator, October 2022, from Bulletin 8/2022,

Updated November 2022, Bulletin 9/2022

The Glebe Society Christmas Party will be held on Sunday 11 December 2022 from 5 pm to 7 pm at The Gardener’s Grill in Victoria Park. The restaurant is in a beautiful 19th century gothic sandstone lodge building and its al fresco dining is highlighted with vibrant red market umbrellas. Imagine wandering down Glebe Point Rd in summer before dusk to enjoy a cocktail-style evening (outdoors if the weather is kind) with views of the lake, birdlife, imposing treelined pathways and beautiful garden surrounds.


Tickets include a generous tasting menu within the style of Turkish/ European fusion, two alcoholic drinks (then we revert to a cash bar), fruit punch and sweet treats towards the end of the evening. Cost: $57 each.

We have two ticket types for this event: the ‘all weather ticket’ guarantees a place – rain, hail or shine; the ‘fine weather only ticket’ will enable you to attend only if the weather is fine – we will contact you 24 hours prior if it is necessary to cancel, and your payment will be refunded.

Book through Eventbrite.

About the Gardener’s Grill

Chef Rodi’s food is inspired by fresh, seasonal ingredients from his travels around the world. Chef Rodi had a Spanish tapas that became a well-known restaurant in Glebe and after seven years he opened this beautiful heritage Turkish restaurant in Victoria Park. With over 16 years’ experience as a private chef, you can expect a farm-to-table menu and a blend of unique cultures, ingredients and flavours. He specialises in slow cooked meats and vegetarian delights.

The Gardener’s Lodge in Victoria Park, 2001, with University of Sydney in the distance (source: City of Sydney archives)

A vignette of Victoria Park’s history

On 16 July 1870, Victoria Park was proclaimed a significant Victorian era park in Sydney, given its part in the early history of Camperdown and a significant and close association with the University of Sydney. The park retains substantial components, including fabric, spaces, layout and the Victorian character of its formative 19th century planning and design.

The Park was originally part of Grose Farm which, in 1853, was designated as the site for the University of Sydney. In 1865, an area at the intersection of City Rd and Parramatta Rd was granted to the university for the building of a formal entrance to the university. The park was designed in its picturesque style by Charles Moore, director of the Royal Botanic Garden. By the end of the 19th century, the main point of access to the university switched to the entrance further west on Parramatta Rd, opposite Derwent Rd.

Between 1910 and 1940 an area roughly east of the line of Eastern Ave, which had been part of Victoria Park, became part of the University’s grounds; and gradually severed the historical vista along the entrance avenue. The entrance avenue itself disappeared.

In the late 1880s, two lodges and a set of ornate gates, designed by Colonial architect James Barnet, were built at the start of the entrance avenue on the corner of City Rd and Parramatta Rd to guard the eastern edge of the University’s grounds. The Messenger’s Lodge was demolished 1940. The second building, Gardener’s Lodge, still survives today adjacent to City Rd. It was used as a toilet block for many years and was eventually refurbished as a café/restaurant in 2012. It is currently operating as The Gardener’s Grill restaurant.                                                       (Source: Wikipedia)

The Gardener’s Grill (source: