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Wollongong City Council

Position Statements Register

MatterMatter MatterShared Values Shared Future - Illawarra 200
Date AdoptedDate Adopted Date Adopted14/12/2015
Date for ReviewDate for Review Date for Review31/03/2018
Responsible OfficerResponsible Officer Responsible OfficerExecutive Strategy Manager
DivisionDivision DivisionOffice of General Manager + Executive
Position StatementPosition Statement Position Statement

Council acknowledges –

  1. Aboriginal people as the Indigenous people of this land and the traditional custodians for generations to come.
  2. European settlement in the Illawarra 200 years ago with the first five land grants issued in December 1816.
  3. The ideologies of Illawarra 200 as symbolic of Shared Values and a Shared Future.  We are a community where working together is promoted and sharing of cultures, ideology and experiences is encouraged.
Background/HistoryBackground/History Background/History
Notice of Motion - Cr Chris Connor, background provided by Cr Connor
Our first people Wollongong City Council acknowledges Aboriginal people as the Indigenous people of this land and the traditional custodians for generations to come. Throughout the years we have seen our community change and mature.  There were many barriers that needed to be understood and overcome.  Our Aboriginal Elders fought for their rights and to be recognised as indigenous and to be accepted into the broader community. Today, the Aboriginal community play an integral role in fostering better relationships across our entire community by sharing their rich history, culture and knowledge. We have come a long way over the past 200 years – today, in this modern time we have reconciled and are a proud community, without discrimination, without boundaries or barriers we live together as one cohesive and diverse community. Illawarra 200 acknowledges this achievement. The story In 1815 some of the Illawarra’s traditional custodians led some white settlers and their cattle down the escarpment.  This marked a new chapter in the story of the Illawarra. These “white settlers” were Charles Throsby and his stockmen, looking for land to graze their cattle.  Following this expedition Throsby established a stockyard near what is now the site of St Francis Xavier Church and a Stockman’s Hut established near the corner of Smith and Harbour Streets – this was the first recorded building in the area that soon became known as Illawarra.
On 2 December 1816 a meeting was held at Charles Throsby’s Stockman’s Hut, this would be a meeting that marked the beginning of the first five land grants being issued to Richard Brooks, George Johnston, Andrew Allan, Robert Jenkins and David Allan.  This meeting was recorded by Surveyor General Oxley and his Deputy James Meehan. Making it all official, the first five Land Grants received the sign off from the Queen on 24 January 1817 and were confirmed as: 1 R Brooks “Exmouth” 1.300 acres (land around Mt Brown Dapto) 2 G Johnston “Macquarie Gift” 1500 acres (area now part of the suburb of Marshall Mount) 3 A Allan “Waterloo” 700 acres (Located in Shellharbour south of Macquarie Rivulet) 4 R Jenkins “Berkeley” 1,000 acres (at Berkeley) 5 D Allan “Illawarra Farm” 2,200 acres (at Port Kembla) Following this period, settlement continued in Wollongong with the first school being established in 1827 and is now known as Wollongong Public School. But it wasn’t until 1834 that the Surveyor General Major Thomas Mitchell planned the layout of the town of Wollongong.  The town was gazetted on 26 November 1834. In 1843 the first Illawarra District Council was formed, covering the coastal plain from Bulli to Nowra and taking in the Kangaroo Valley.  This council failed and on 28 February 1859 the Central Illawarra Municipality was incorporated and the Northern Illawarra was incorporated on 26 October 1868.  Bulli Shire was incorporated on 7 March 1906. On 11 September 1942 Wollongong was proclaimed a City by the NSW Government Gazette. Illawarra 200 We fast forward 200 years and we are a city of almost 207,000 people with a diverse community represented by people from all around the world. A community where working together is promoted, sharing of cultures, ideology and experiences is encouraged.  We are compassionate and understanding of each other’s hardships and encouraging of our future. Illawarra 200 is about the acknowledgment of European settlement in the Illawarra, the first five land grants issued in December 1816. We, as a community, choose to mark this occasion in positive ways, acknowledging the contribution of everyone who lives in our city. From June 2015 to December 2015 Illawarra 200 went on an exclusively Aboriginal Journey showcasing culture, art, music and food through Reconciliation Week activities, art exhibitions, movie nights and our Twilight Markets. The commencement of 2016 marks a shift in the program with the introduction and representation of our broader community, the woven community of many different cultures intertwining with the Indigenous story.  The shared values are delivered through events in the region embracing Illawarra 200.  Our shared future is delivered to our children through commemorative activities at our public schools.
Minute No. 181