Glastonbury Gardens | NSW Environment, Energy and Science

About us

Glastonbury Gardens

Item details

Name of item: Glastonbury Gardens
Type of item: Landscape
Group/Collection: Parks, Gardens and Trees
Category: Urban Park
Primary address: 72-82 Lawrence Hargrave Drive, Austinmer, NSW 2515
Parish: Wollongong
County: Camden
Local govt. area: Wollongong City
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
72-82 Lawrence Hargrave DriveAustinmerWollongong CityWollongongCamdenPrimary Address

Statement of significance:

The Glastonbury Gardens are of significance for the local area for historical, aesthetic and reasons of representativeness. The place has historic associations with local Council's officer who was responsible for its creation and presents a representative example of public parks of the 1960s. The park design is representative of typical park design and plantings of this period. The site has associations with previous use as site of colliery dam, with the dam wall still visible.
Date significance updated: 10 Feb 14
Note: The State Heritage Inventory provides information about heritage items listed by local and State government agencies. The State Heritage Inventory is continually being updated by local and State agencies as new information becomes available. Read the OEH copyright and disclaimer.


Designer/Maker: Wollongong City Council
Physical description: The Glastonbury Gardens located along Lawrence Hargrave Drive is a public park containing mature Phoenix canariensis, Sabal palms, strelitzia nicholai and Araucaria heterophylla. This was previously the site of a Colliery dam which is still visible. The park is a focal point for community events.
Current use: Public park
Former use: Colliery dam site


Historical notes: This park was dedicated in 1965 and named after Reg Glastonbury, WCC City Engineer from 1947-1962. The park containing mature Phoenix canariensis, Sabal palms, strelitzia nicholai and Araucaria heterophylla.

Previously known as Toxteth Avenue Swamp, the site was formally dedicated to Reginald E. Glastonbury in 1965 and became known as Glastonbury Gardens. Reginald E. Glastonbury was City Engineer for Wollongong City Council from 1947-1962.

Glastonbury Garden as it is today was developed in 1965 and named after Reg Glastonbury, who held the position of city engineer with Wollongong City Council. By 1966, the site had been developed as a rest park with grassed areas, trees and planted gardens. Robert Woodhill, 72, born and bred in Austinmer says the terraced stone walls on the lower tier are a focal point, built by a Wollongong City Council gardener employed full-time to look after the park up to the 1980s.

Roxie Mossop, a council gardener, has been credited as the man who “single-handedly built Glastonbury Gardens” after he took over the site in 1966. (Advertiser 2 Oct, 1985 Roxie Rivals our Australian legends). Though formally named Glastonbury Gardens, the site is known locally as “Roxie’s”. Mossop retired from council in 1979. In appreciation of his work, Council resolved to name the lower east sunken garden after Mossop and this section was the garden was named “Roxy Mossop Glen” in 1983, with a plaque erected in his honour on the 14th September 1985. 'Roxy [Bino] was a marvellous man who was dedicated to the park and its upkeep.' He says." (Illawarra Mercury, 2012).

Unsubstantiated: There are references (letters) that refer to the gardens being finished by ‘unemployed gardeners’ after Roxie Mossop fell ill and was unable to complete the gardens himself.

The site has associations with previous use as site of colliery dam, with the dam wall still visible.Illawarra Mercury (1 December 2012, page 3): Woodhill remembers the top level of the two-tiered park as a large lagoon in which he and his friends would lark around on many a hot summer day. It was filled in with coal wash in the mid-60s but the kids who grew up in there remember its origins fondly.

During the development of the site, there were gifts of bricks, sandstone, rose trees and other plants from community members to enhance the park beyond the council contribution (Illawarra Mercury 24 July 1973 Everyone’s Happy With Roxie).

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Leisure-Activities associated with recreation and relaxation Setting up public parks-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
SHR Criteria g)
Assessment criteria: Items are assessed against the PDF State Heritage Register (SHR) Criteria to determine the level of significance. Refer to the Listings below for the level of statutory protection.

Recommended management:

Retain as public facility, manage trees as required.


Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Local Environmental PlanWollongong Local Environmental Plan 2009615326 Feb 10 2010-76 
Local Environmental Plan  07 Jan 00 1/200069
Heritage study     

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
City of Wollongong Heritage Study1991L14-NMcDonald McPhee Rogers Conacher FullartonDon Fullerton No
Review of heritage items in Wollongong LGA2013 Zoran PopovicZoran Popovic Yes

References, internet links & images


Note: internet links may be to web pages, documents or images.

rez rez rez rez rez rez
rez rez
(Click on thumbnail for full size image and image details)

Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: Local Government
Database number: 2700752

Every effort has been made to ensure that information contained in the State Heritage Inventory is correct. If you find any errors or omissions please send your comments to the Database Manager.

All information and pictures on this page are the copyright of the Heritage Division or respective copyright owners.