LILYFIELD At A Glance
Quiet by nature, Lilyfield’s working-class roots underpin its community-centred vibe. Sydneysiders are yet to tap into this neighbourhood that’s situated on the fringe of the city. Lilyfield is defined by architecture that echoes its intriguing history, Iron Cove and bordering parklands.
Foreshore parklands, wide-open streets and the weekly farmers’ market.
Callan Park has beautiful grounds with historic buildings, it leads to the Bay Run. Orange Grove Farmers Markets is on every Saturday.
The sandstone buildings in the sprawling grounds of Callan Park were originally the ‘Callan Park Hospital for the Insane’.
On the fringe of some of the Inner West’s most thriving neighbourhoods, Lilyfield is quiet yet endearing. It includes foreshore parklands on Iron Cove and urban streets lined with cottages that are reminders of its working-class heritage.
A large part of this suburb is parkland – Callan and Leichhardt Parks run down to the foreshore of Iron Cove. Historically, Callan Park was an estate which became a psychiatric hospital. Now it is home to the University of Sydney College of Fine Arts, NSW Writers’ Centre and the NSW Ambulance Education Centre – the psychiatric and rehabilitation centres have been relocated. Locals bring their furry friends to play in the beautiful and peaceful grounds around the heritage-listed sandstone buildings.
Further west, Leichhardt Park is a sprawling outdoor recreation area, accommodating boating, football and everything in between. The popular Bay Run around Iron Cove passes through Callan Park and Leichhardt Park.
Lilyfield may not have the cafés and dining opportunities of Rozelle and Leichhardt, but on Saturday the Orange Grove Farmers’ Market on Balmain Road is in full swing with great coffee, food and an enormous range of produce and goods on sale. Other days of the week the intimate café scene at Orange Grove Plaza keeps locals happy.
The City West Link bisects Lilyfield, so commuting to Sydney’s CBD is easy by road, light rail or bus.
Still in the midst of gentrification, Lilyfield has elements of grunginess, but with workman cottages being beautifully restored with contemporary add-ons, Lilyfield is slowly being revived.
Generations of families have held on tight to their homes, but in more recent times, Lilyfield has had an influx of newbies – young families, professionals and matured-aged couples looking to downsize.
With Sydney College of Fine Arts and within arm’s reach of Sydney’s university corridor, more and more students are starting to call Lilyfield home.
Orange Grove Farmers’ Market is the place to shop for fresh seasonal produce, boutique fashion and sustainable fair trade homewares. You can grab a bite to eat from one of the many stalls dishing up tantalising flavours and shop for fresh seasonal produce, gourmet delicacies and artisan breads. Held every Saturday from 8am.
The foreshore parklands of Leichhardt Park are home to Leichhardt Aquatic Centre and Leichhardt Sporting Grounds. The popular Bay Run and cycling paths passes through the park and there are picnic and playground facilities. It’s a wonderful place for a weekend picnic.
A 60-hectare heritage-listed site which was once home to a Hospital for the Insane, Callan Park is now a multi-use complex. The psychiatric hospital has been relocated, and the main buildings now house the Sydney College of Fine Arts, the NSW Writers’ Centre, the Ambulance Education Centre and a campus of the University of Tasmania. Callan Park also forms part of the popular Iron Cove Bay Run, which passes through the grounds.
Lilyfield’s architecture is an eclectic mix of styles and sizes. In contrast to neighbouring Rozelle, Lilyfield’s terrace houses, workmen’s cottages and architecturally-designed homes sit on generous blocks that line wide streets.