William Thompson Masonic School Avenue of HonourPrint Page Print this page


Photographs supplied by Geoff Turner

The 364 Brush Box trees, along the avenue of the western boundary of the Masonic School, commemorate the masons from New South Wales who died in service or were killed in action during World War One.

A list of their names is displayed on the memorial at the northern end of the avenue. 

The Masonic schools which have been erected at Baulkham Hills by the Freemasons of New South Wales at a cost exceeding £20,000, were officially opened on Saturday, in the presence of upwards of 5000 Freemasons and double that number of friends and interested spectators. The brethren wore full regalia, and the official and impressive ritual was used. The door of the administrative block was opened by Mrs. William Thompson (the wife of the Grand Master), who was presented with an ornamental gold key.

In his dedicatory address the Grand Master said that to a large degree the schools would stand for a memorial in honour of the 330 brethren who made the supreme sacrifice in the war, for there would be an avenue of trees planted as an approach to the schools, and each tree would bear the honoured name of a fallen brother.  
Sydney Mail (NSW), 15 November 1922.

In 1918 William Thompson thought that the wide open spaces of Baulkham Hills would be a good location to establish a school and garden village for children who had been orphaned or left in poor circumstances following World War I. The project was funded by the Masonic Lodges who bought a 168 acre run down dairy farm on Seven Hills Road.  On 11 November 1922 (Armistice Day) the William Thompson Masonic School was officially opened. 

With the onset of World War II, the children in the school were moved out to accommodation in the country-side and the buildings were converted into a hospital for soldiers. The children returned in 1947 and the school continued there into the 1970s with up to 360 students, many of them living in the dormitories. The council bought the land in 1977 and the buildings are now allocated to groups involved in community service.



Address:Seven Hills Road, Masonic School, Balcombe Heights Estate, Baulkham Hills, 2153
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -33.762862
Long: 150.980574
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Avenue of Honour
Monument Theme:Conflict
Actual Event Start Date:04-August-1914
Actual Event End Date:28-June-1919


Front Inscription

This avenue of trees was planted in memory of the Masons of N.S.W. who made the supreme sacrifice in the Great War 

1914 - 1918

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au