Industry, Urban Development & Environmental Protection
Like all of Australia, the City of Botany Bay was affected by the First World War.
Locally, the years during and following the war saw the construction of new housing for working-class people and veterans. The garden suburb of Daceyville was Australia’s first, model suburb built in response to Sydney’s inner-city slums. The suburb is named after John Rowland Dacey, Colonial Secretary, who was a strong advocate for affordable housing for working-class people.
During the Second World War, our City once again demonstrated its outstanding commitment to national service. In Mascot and Botany, approximately 3,000 men and women enlisted to serve, amounting to ten percent of our population at the time. Not everyone was eligible or able to serve in the war but many other residents showed their support for the war effort by purchasing war loans. The residents of our area received twenty-five honour pennants for meeting or exceeding our quota of war bond sales.
In our area, the 20th century was defined by both the growth and decline of various industries. Our area changed forever in 1971, with the construction of the Port Botany container terminals. The growth of the Port has continued to play a major role in the character of our community, leading to new support industries, including transport and warehouse storage.
Another consequence of the Port development, and subsequent plans to develop Sydney Airport, was the stirring of a local environmental movement. A key figure in this movement was Nancy Hillier (1924-2013) who led the opposition to the Botany Port and continued as an environmental advocate and activist for her entire life.
Over the years our City has produced numerous sportspeople who have competed in athletics, soccer, rugby league and swimming. Residents of Botany Bay have gone on to represent our City, our State and our Nation in a number of sports. Prominent local athletes include Keith Barnes, John Warren, Charles Samuels and Cecil ‘Chick’ Hensley.
In the first half of the 20th century our area was served by two Councils. Botany Council and North Botany (later renamed Mascot) Council. In 1948, the two Councils amalgamated to form the Municipality of Botany. Indeed, at the time, it was proposed to form a single Greater Sydney Council. The ‘Movement for a Greater Sydney’ traces its origins back to 1913: it is interesting to note that more than 100 years later the issue of amalgamations is still on the agenda.
In 1996 the Municipality of Botany was renamed the ‘City of Botany Bay’.
Our City has also been home to two Premiers of NSW, Robert Heffron and Kristina Keneally. Robert Heffron served as Deputy Premier to John Cahill from 1952 to 1958 before becoming Premier himself in 1958. He remained Premier until 1964 and was a key player during Labor’s 24 years in Government between 1941 and 1965. Kristina Keneally served as our most recent Labor Premier between 2009 and 2011. Premier Keneally was the first female Premier of New South Wales and is recognised for her commitment to public transport, health and disability services.