Suburb Profile - Rozelle
Rozelle is a suburb in the inner west of Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. It is located 4 kilometres west of the Sydney central business district, in the local government area of the Municipality of Leichhardt.
Rozelle sits between the suburbs of Balmain to the north-west and Lilyfield to the south-west. Iron Cove is on the north-west border whilst Rozelle Bay, White Bay and Johnstons Bay make up the south-east border. These three bays surround the container port of Glebe Island which has been attached to the shoreline as part of the extensive reclamation of Rozelle Bay and White Bay which had begun in the 1890s.
The area now known as Rozelle was part of a 550 acre (2.2 km²) grant to colonial surgeon Dr William Balmain (1762-1803) made in 1800 by Governor John Hunter.
The land was first settled in 1836 and by 1861 had been divided into the well populated eastern suburb of Balmain and the sparsely populated western area, extending to the gates of Callan Park, known as Balmain West.
Rozelle Post Office, 1901 (National Archives of Australia)
By 1877 the population of Balmain West had increased and the Balmain post office was inadequate for their needs as a growing suburb. Residents petitioned for a post office of their own and in 1880 Balmain West post office was established in Joseph Gosling's grocery shop at the junction of Weston Road (now Victoria Road) and Withecombe Street. Over the next 10 years the population of Balmain West grew further and in 1891 work started on a new post office on the corner of Weston Road and Darling Street.
In December 1892, prior to the opening of the new post office, the Postmaster-General declared Rozelle (named after the nearby Rozelle Bay to the south east) as the new name for the Balmain West post office. The new Rozelle post office opened in 1894 and by the early 1900s, both the suburb itself and local residents had adopted the name.
The name Rozelle and Rozelle Bay (often shown as "Rozella Bay" on old maps), originated from the parrots found in abundance at Rose Hill (near Parramatta) the first suburb of Sydney, established as a prime farming area for the new colony. The parrots, also in abundance in the inner west Bay area of Sydney, were commonly called "Rose Hill parrots" or "Rose-hillers" then Rosella
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