Residents and friends celebrated the 40th Anniversary of the Glebe Estate on Friday 10 October 2014 at a street party at the corner of Catherine and Mt Vernon Streets, Glebe. VIPs who attended included Jamie Parker (State MP for Balmain), Tania Plibersek (Federal MP for Sydney and Deputy Leader of the Opposition), Cr Robyn Kemmis (Deputy Lord Mayor, City of Sydney) and Verity Firth (former MP and City Councillor).

In addition to morning tea and speeches the occasion featured a display about the Glebe Estate project and photographs from the Glebe Community Photography Competition.  The event was organised by residents and the Glebe Community Development Project.


The Glebe Lands (Appropriation) Act, no 35 of 1974 passed on the 6th August, 1974 by the Whitlam Government, enabled the purchase and transfer of housing in the Anglican estates of Bishopthorpe and St Philips from the Glebe Administration Board. The Federal government was lobbied by the Anglican Church, The Glebe Society and Leichhardt Council to purchase The Glebe.

Tom Uren, the Minister for Urban and Rural Development, championed the legislation and 3,200 residents were invited to a public meeting on October 18th 1974 in the Glebe Town Hall, to unveil the details  of the restoration plan. The government implemented its program of urban renewal through the Glebe Project.

In buying the estate, the federal government wanted to:

  • Avoid the sudden displacement of the population and avoid disruption to community networks;
  • Retain opportunity for low income earners, families and aged to live close to the city as part
    of the wider community;
  • Improve environmental conditions and social conditions of residents of the Estate and
    surrounding area; and
  • Preserve the townscape and sympathetically rehabilitate it.

Without the vision and advocacy of politicians, policy makers, community groups and local residents, the inner city, particularly Glebe, would have lost what we now see as its core value  – its dynamic and diverse community.

October 2014

A display is at Glebe Library commemorates the principles of the legislation and the Glebe Project.

Photographs below by Bruce Davis and Jan Wilson. 

DSC_0198-ed-lo-res  DSC_0196-ed-lo-res  DSC_0187-ed-lo-res

Everyone and their dog turned out to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Glebe Estate.



Margot Rawsthorne gets proceedings under way.


Current and past State MPs spoke of the
potential threat to the Glebe Estate
should the State Government extend 
its policy of selling off public housing.

Above Verity Firth, former local member, and below


Jamie Parker MP, current Member for Balmain.


Tanya Plibersek, MP for Sydney and Deputy
Leader of the Federal Opposition (right),
with Verity Firth.


Deputy Lord Mayor, Cr Robyn Kemmis, reminding
the crowd about the history of the Glebe Estate.


Cutting the birthday cake (l. to r.) Verity Firth, Jamie
Parker, Robyn Kemmis and John Gray of the Glebe Society.