Council history

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Administrative history

An outline of the administrative events and changes that have occurred and shaped the Woollahra municipality since 1858.

Mayors and chairmen

A full list of the mayors of Woollahra since George Thornton was elected the first mayor, then known as chairman, of Woollahra in 1860.

Woollahra Alderman and Councillors

A directory of Woollahra Alderman and Councillors dating back to 1860, with portraits of each elected Mayor/Chairman.

Petition to form the Municipality

In October 1859 a petition signed with the names of 144 interested locals proposed that 'Darling Point, Upper Paddington, and Watson's Bay' be formed into a municipal district under the provisions of the Municipalities Act of 1858.

Euroka Reserve, Woollahra

For over 80 years Woollahra Council operated from headquarters at the corner of Ocean Street and Jersey Road, Woollahra. Today only a small portion of the original site remains in council ownership.

Proclamation of the Municipality

The Municipality of Woollahra was proclaimed on 20 April 1860 and the first elections were held the following month.

Electing the first Council

Membership of the first council of the municipality of Woollahra was determined through a process of public nomination and a poll of the district's electors. Woollahra was entitled to nine councillors to hold office for three years.

First meeting of the Council

The first meeting of Woollahra Council was held on 6 June 1860 in the offices of solicitors Rowley Holdsworth and Garrick in the city.

The first Council Chambers

Before moving to its purpose built administration building in February 1864, Council held its meetings in a building known as the Iron House. The building stood at the corner of Ocean Street and Edgecliff Road on land now known as Edgecliff Square.