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125th Anniversary of Local Government : 17-August-2011
125th Anniversary of Local Government : 17-August-2011

Photographs supplied by Glen Yeomans / Kent Watson

The sculpture commemorates Sir Henry Parkes, the Father of Federation after whom the town of Parkes was named. It was unveiled during 125th Anniversary of Local Government celebrations in 2008. 

Parkes has a unique history in that the town (originally called Bushman`s Lead) petitioned Sir Henry Parkes while he was still alive to have the town named after him.

In 1873 the then Prime Minister of New South Wales, Sir Henry Parkes, showed his interest in the district by visiting the diggings. On December 1, 1873 the name of the settlement was changed from Bushmans to Parkes in honour of the great statesman.

Later on August 1, 1887 the town changed the name of the main street to 'Clarinda', Lady Parkes' christian name. In October 1998 celebrations were held to mark the 125th anniversary of the name change from Bushmans to Parkes.

Sir Henry Parkes, GCMG (27 May 1815 – 27 April 1896) was an Australian politician and businessman who served as a Premier of New South Wales. He has been referred to as the "Father of Federation", as he was one of the most influential advocates of the Federation of Australia. 

He served as Premier for five separate occasions from 1872 to 1891. Later in his career, he joined the Free Trade Party; there were no political parties in New South Wales until 1887. He was the primary instigator of a conference in 1890 and a Constitutional convention in 1891, the first of a series of meetings that led to the federation of Australia. He died in 1896, five years before this process was completed. He was described during his lifetime by The Times as "the most commanding figure in Australian politics". Alfred Deakin described Parkes as having flaws but nonetheless being "a large-brained self-educated Titan whose natural field was found in Parliament."



Address:Welcome & Clarinda Streets, Parkes Town Centre, Parkes, 2870
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -33.137684
Long: 148.174567
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Sculpture
Monument Theme:People
Sub-Theme:Government - State
Artist:Terrance Plowright


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Monday 12th May, 2008
Front Inscription

A tribute to the Father of Federation

This sculpture of Sir Henry Parkes was unveiled by Her Excellency Professor Marie Bashir AC CVO Governor of New South Wales  on 12 May 2008 as part of Parkes 125 year Local Government Anniversary Celebrations

Cr Robert Wilson OAM   Alan McCormack PSM
Mayor                              General Manager

Terrance Plowright, Sculptor

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