New South Wales Legislative Assembly
The New South Wales Legislative Assembly is the lower of the two houses of the Parliament of New South Wales, an Australian state. The upper house is the New South Wales Legislative Council. Both the Assembly and Council sit at Parliament House in Sydney; the Assembly is presided over by the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly. The Assembly has 93 members, elected by single-member constituency, which are known as seats. Voting is by the optional preferential system. Members of the Legislative Assembly have the post-nominals MP after their names. From the creation of the assembly up to about 1990, the post-nominals "MLA" were used; the Assembly is called the bearpit on the basis of the house's reputation for confrontational style during heated moments and the "savage political theatre and the bloodlust of its professional players" attributed in part to executive dominance. The Legislative Assembly was created in 1856 with the introduction of a bicameral parliament for the Crown Colony of New South Wales.
In the beginning, only men were eligible to be members of the Assembly, only around one half of men were able to pass the property or income qualifications required to vote. Two years the Electoral Reform Act, passed despite the opposition of the Legislative Council, saw the introduction of a far more democratic system, allowing any man, resident in the colony for six months the right to vote, removing property requirements to stand as a candidate. Following Australia's federation in 1901, the New South Wales parliament became a State legislature. Women were granted the right to vote in 1902, gained the right to be members of the Assembly in 1918, with the first successful candidate being elected in 1925; the Legislative Assembly sits in the oldest legislative chamber in Australia. Built for the Legislative Council in 1843, it has been in continuous use since 1856; the colour of the Legislative Assembly chamber is green, which follows the British tradition for lower houses. Most legislation is initiated in the Legislative Assembly.
The party or coalition with a majority of seats in the lower house is invited by the Governor to form government. The leader of that party subsequently becomes Premier of New South Wales, their senior colleagues become ministers responsible for various portfolios; as Australian political parties traditionally vote along party lines, most legislation introduced by the governing party will pass through the Legislative Assembly. As with the federal parliament and other Australian states and territories, voting in the Assembly is compulsory for all those over the age of 18. Elections are held every four years on the fourth Saturday in March, exceptional circumstances notwithstanding, as the result of a 1995 referendum to amend the New South Wales Constitution. 47 votes as a majority are required to pass legislation. The clerk of the house of the NSW Legislative Assembly is the senior administrative officer; the clerk advises the speaker of the Assembly and members of parliament on matters of parliamentary procedure and management.
The office is modelled on the clerk of the House of Commons of the United Kingdom. The following have served as clerks: Richard O’Connor 1856–59 Charles Thompson 1860–69 Oliver Kelly 1869–69 Stephen Jones 1869–87 Frederick Webb CMG 1888–1904 Richard Arnold 1904–16 William Mowle 1916–27 Sydney Boydell 1927–30 William Rupert McCourt CMG 1930–47 Frederick Langley 1947 Harry Robbins MC 1947–56 Allan Pickering CBE 1956–66 Ivor Vidler CBE 1967–74 Ronald Ward 1974–81 Douglas Wheeler 1981–84 Grahame Cooksley 1984–90 Russell Grove PSM 1990–2011 Ronda Miller 2011–2016 Helen Minnican 2016–present The ceremonial duties of the serjeant-at-arms are as the custodian of the mace, the symbol of the authority of the House and the speaker, as the messenger for formal messages from the Legislative Assembly to the Legislative Council; the serjeant has the authority to remove disorderly people, by force if necessary, from the Assembly or the public or press galleries on the instructions of the speaker. The administrative duties of the serjeant include allocation of office accommodation and fittings for members' offices, co-ordination of car transport for members and courier services for the House, security for the House and arrangements for school visits.
Once a meeting has started in an Assembly, the serjeant will stand at the door to keep authority and make sure no one else comes in or out. The following have served as serjeant-at-arms: Laurence Joseph Harnett 1873–1909 John Mackenzie Webb Harry Robbins Ivor Percy Kidd Vidler Hubert Pierre Scarlett Ronald Edward Ward Frederick Augustine Mahony William Geoffery Luton Peter John McHugh William Christie 1909 – 1918 Leslie Gönye–present New South Wales state election, 2019 List of New South Wales state by-elections Parliaments of the Australian states and territories Members of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly New South Wales Legislative Assembly electoral districts Women in the New South Wales Legislative Assembly Official website New South Wales Constitution Act
Electoral district of Monaro
Monaro is an electoral district of the Legislative Assembly in the Australian state of New South Wales. It is represented by John Barilaro of The Nationals. Monaro is a regional district in the south of the state, it encompasses Snowy Monaro Regional Council. Its significant population centres include Queanbeyan, Braidwood, Bombala, Captains Flat, Bredbo, Berridale and Adaminaby; the electorate was created in 1856 for the First Parliament under the name Maneroo, derived from an Aboriginal name for the area, now spelt Monaro. It was renamed Monaro for the second Parliament in February 1858, it elected two members between 1880 and 1894. In 1894, single-member electorates were introduced statewide and part of the electorate, was absorbed into Eden-Bombala. In 1913, it absorbed much of the Electoral district of Queanbeyan, including Queanbeyan, its major city. In 1920, with the introduction of proportional representation, it was absorbed into Goulburn, along with Bega, it was recreated in 1927
New South Wales Legislative Council
The New South Wales Legislative Council referred to as the upper house, is one of the two chambers of the parliament of the Australian state of New South Wales. The other is the Legislative Assembly. Both sit at Parliament House in Sydney, it is normal for legislation to be first deliberated on and passed by the Legislative Assembly before being considered by the Legislative Council, which acts in the main as a house of review. The Legislative Council has 42 members, elected by proportional representation in which the whole state is a single electorate. Members serve eight-year terms, which are staggered, with half the Council being elected every four years coinciding with elections to the Legislative Assembly; the parliament of New South Wales is Australia's oldest legislature. It had its beginnings when New South Wales was a British colony under the control of the Governor and was first established in 1823 by the New South Wales Act. A small, 5-member appointed Legislative Council began meeting on 24 August 1824 to advise the Governor on legislative matters.
It grew to seven members in 1825, between ten and fifteen in 1829. Under the Constitution Act 1843, the Legislative Council was expanded to 36 members, of which 12 were appointed by the Governor in the name of the Crown, the remainder elected from among eligible landholders. In 1851 the Council was enlarged to 54 members with 36 of its members elected by adult males who met certain property requirements and 18 appointed members. In 1856, under a new Constitution, the Parliament became bicameral with a elected Legislative Assembly and a appointed Legislative Council with a Government taking over most of the legislative powers of the Governor; the right to vote was extended to all adult males in 1858. On 22 May 1856, the newly constituted New South Wales Parliament sat for the first time. With the new 54-member Legislative Assembly taking over the council chamber, a second meeting chamber for the 21-member upper house had to be added to the Parliament building in Macquarie Street. In 1901, New South Wales became a sovereign state of the Commonwealth of Australia and many government functions were transferred to the new Commonwealth government.
In 1902, women gained the right to vote and the current Constitution of New South Wales was adopted, in 1918, reforms permitted women to be members of parliament. In 1925, 1926 and 1929, Premier Jack Lang made attempts to abolish the Legislative Council, following the example of the Queensland Legislative Council in 1922, but all were unsuccessful; the debate did, result in another round of reforms, in 1933, the law was changed so that a quarter of the Legislative Council was elected every three years by members of the Legislative Assembly and the Legislative Council, rather than being appointed by the Governor. In 1962 Indigenous Australians gained the right to vote in all state elections. In 1978, the Council became a directly elected body in a program of electoral reform introduced by the Wran Labor government; the number of members was reduced to 45, although transitional arrangements meant that there were 43 members from 1978 to 1981, 44 from 1981 to 1984. Further reform in 1991 by the Greiner Liberal-National government saw the size of the Legislative Council cut to 42 members, with half being elected every 4 years.
In 1991, the Legislative Assembly reduced from 109 to 99 Members and to 93 members in 1999. As with the federal parliament and other Australian states and territories, voting in the election to select members for the Council is compulsory for all New South Wales citizens over the age of 18; as the result of a 1995 referendum, every four years half the seats in the Council come up for election on the fourth Saturday in March, barring exceptional circumstances. The Queen of Australia has a throne in the Legislative Council, Queen Elizabeth II has opened the New South Wales Parliament on two occasions, on 4 February 1954, as part of her first visit to Australia, the first occasion in which the monarch of Australia had opened a session of any Australian parliament; the other occasion was on 20 February 1992, during her visit to Sydney to celebrate the sesquicentenary of the incorporation of the City of Sydney, on which occasion she stated: From 1846 to 1856 the title of the presiding officer was Speaker of the Legislative Council, after that date it has been President of the Legislative Council.
The Legislative Council chamber is a prefabricated cast-iron building, intended as an "iron store and dwelling with ornamental front", manufactured in Scotland and shipped to Victoria. In 1856, when plans for a new chamber for the Legislative Council were not ready in time, this building was purchased and shipped to Sydney, where it was erected as an extension to Parliament House; the Legislative Council chamber is furnished in red, which follows the British tradition for the upper house. Proportional representation, with the whole state as a single electorate, means that the quota for election is small; this guarantees the representation of minor parties in the Legislative Council, including micro-parties that might attract less than 2% of the primary vote but are elected through preferences. In the 1999 elections, a record number of parties contested seats in the Council, resulting in an unwieldy ballot paper, a complex exchange of preferences between the numerous parties running candidates.
As a result, party registration requirements have since been made more restrictive, the replacement of party preference arrangements with optional preferential voting. This re
New South Wales
New South Wales is a state on the east coast of Australia. It borders Queensland to the north, Victoria to the south, South Australia to the west, its coast borders the Tasman Sea to the east. The Australian Capital Territory is an enclave within the state. New South Wales' state capital is Sydney, Australia's most populous city. In September 2018, the population of New South Wales was over 8 million, making it Australia's most populous state. Just under two-thirds of the state's population, 5.1 million, live in the Greater Sydney area. Inhabitants of New South Wales are referred to as New South Welshmen; the Colony of New South Wales was founded as a penal colony in 1788. It comprised more than half of the Australian mainland with its western boundary set at 129th meridian east in 1825; the colony included the island territories of New Zealand, Van Diemen's Land, Lord Howe Island, Norfolk Island. During the 19th century, most of the colony's area was detached to form separate British colonies that became New Zealand and the various states and territories of Australia.
However, the Swan River Colony has never been administered as part of New South Wales. Lord Howe Island remains part of New South Wales, while Norfolk Island has become a federal territory, as have the areas now known as the Australian Capital Territory and the Jervis Bay Territory; the prior inhabitants of New South Wales were the Aboriginal tribes who arrived in Australia about 40,000 to 60,000 years ago. Before European settlement there were an estimated 250,000 Aboriginal people in the region; the Wodi Wodi people are the original custodians of the Illawarra region of South Sydney. Speaking a variant of the Dharawal language, the Wodi Wodi people lived across a large stretch of land, surrounded by what is now known as Campbelltown, Shoalhaven River and Moss Vale; the Bundjalung people are the original custodians of parts of the northern coastal areas. The European discovery of New South Wales was made by Captain James Cook during his 1770 survey along the unmapped eastern coast of the Dutch-named continent of New Holland, now Australia.
In his original journal covering the survey, in triplicate to satisfy Admiralty Orders, Cook first named the land "New Wales", named after Wales. However, in the copy held by the Admiralty, he "revised the wording" to "New South Wales"; the first British settlement was made by. After years of chaos and anarchy after the overthrow of Governor William Bligh, a new governor, Lieutenant-Colonel Lachlan Macquarie, was sent from Britain to reform the settlement in 1809. During his time as governor, Macquarie commissioned the construction of roads, wharves and public buildings, sent explorers out from Sydney and employed a planner to design the street layout of Sydney. Macquarie's legacy is still evident today. During the 19th century, large areas were successively separated to form the British colonies of Tasmania, South Australia and Queensland. Responsible government was granted to the New South Wales colony in 1855. Following the Treaty of Waitangi, William Hobson declared British sovereignty over New Zealand in 1840.
In 1841 it was separated from the Colony of New South Wales to form the new Colony of New Zealand. Charles Darwin visited Australia in January 1836 and in The Voyage of the Beagle records his hesitations about and fascination with New South Wales, including his speculations about the geological origin and formation of the great valleys, the aboriginal population, the situation of the convicts, the future prospects of the country. At the end of the 19th century, the movement toward federation between the Australian colonies gathered momentum. Conventions and forums involving colony leaders were held on a regular basis. Proponents of New South Wales as a free trade state were in dispute with the other leading colony Victoria, which had a protectionist economy. At this time customs posts were common on borders on the Murray River. Travelling from New South Wales to Victoria in those days was difficult. Supporters of federation included the New South Wales premier Sir Henry Parkes whose 1889 Tenterfield Speech was pivotal in gathering support for New South Wales involvement.
Edmund Barton to become Australia's first Prime Minister, was another strong advocate for federation and a meeting held in Corowa in 1893 drafted an initial constitution. In 1898 popular referenda on the proposed federation were held in New South Wales, South Australia and Tasmania. All votes resulted in a majority in favour, but the New South Wales government under Premier George Reid had set a requirement for a higher "yes" vote than just a simple majority, not met. In 1899 further referenda were held in the same states as well as Queensland. All resulted in yes votes with majorities increased from the previous year. New South Wales met the conditions; as a compromise to the question on where the capital was to be located, an agreement was made that the site was to be within New South Wales but not closer than 100 miles from Sydney, while the provisional capital would be Melbourne. The area that now forms the Australian Capital Territory was ceded by New South Wales when Canberra was selected.
In the years after World War I, the high prices enjoyed durin
Parliament of New South Wales
The Parliament of New South Wales, located in Parliament House on Macquarie Street, Sydney, is the main legislative body in the Australian state of New South Wales. It is a bicameral parliament elected by the people of the state in general elections; the parliament shares law making powers with the Australian Federal Parliament. It is Australia's oldest legislature; the New South Wales Parliament follows the Westminster parliamentary traditions of dress, Green–Red chamber colours and protocol. The Parliament derives its authority from the Queen of Australia, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, represented by the Governor of New South Wales, who chairs the Executive Council of New South Wales, it consists of a lower house, the New South Wales Legislative Assembly, an upper house, the New South Wales Legislative Council. Each house is directly elected by the people of New South Wales at elections held every four years; the Parliament of New South Wales is Australia's oldest legislature. It had its beginnings.
A small, appointed Legislative Council began meeting in 1824 to advise the Governor on legislative matters. By 1843, this had been enlarged with two-thirds of its members elected by adult males who met certain property requirements. In 1856, under a new Constitution, the Parliament became bicameral with a elected Legislative Assembly and an appointed Legislative Council with a Government taking over most of the legislative powers of the Governor; the right to vote was extended to all adult males in 1858. In 1850 the Australian Colonies Government Act was passed by the Imperial Parliament; this expanded the New South Wales Legislative Council so that by 1851 there were 54 members – again, with two-thirds elected. In 1853, a select committee chaired by William Wentworth began drawing up a Constitution for responsible self-government; the Committee’s proposed Constitution was placed before the Legislative Council in August that year and, for the most part, accepted. The Constitution, with an upper house whose members were appointed for life, was sent to the Imperial Parliament and was passed into law on 16 July 1855.
The new Parliament of New South Wales was to be a bicameral legislature, similar to that of the United Kingdom. On 22 May 1856, the newly constituted New South Wales Parliament sat for the first time. With the new 54-member Legislative Assembly taking over the council chamber, a second meeting chamber for the 21 member upper house had to be added to the Parliament building in Macquarie Street. In 1859 Queensland was made a colony separate from New South Wales; the Legislative Assembly was reduced from 80 to 72 members by the loss of the Queensland seats. In 1901, New South Wales became a state of the Commonwealth of Australia and many government functions were transferred to the new Commonwealth government; the current Constitution of New South Wales was adopted in 1902: the Constitution Act 1902. Women gained the right to vote in Commonwealth elections in April 1902 and in New South Wales state elections in August 1902. In 1918, reforms permitted women to be Members of Parliament, although no woman was elected until 1925 when Millicent Preston-Stanley was elected to represent Eastern Suburbs.
That same year, a proportional representation system was introduced for the Legislative Assembly with multiple representatives from each electorate. Women were not able to be appointed to the Legislative Council until 1926; the first two women appointed to the Legislative Council were both ALP members proposed on 23 November 1931: Catherine Green, who took her seat the following day, Ellen Webster, who joined her two days later. In 1925, 1926 and 1929, Premier Jack Lang made attempts at abolishing the Legislative Council, following the example of the Queensland Legislative Council in 1922, but all were unsuccessful; the debate did, result in another round of reforms, in 1933, the law was changed so that a quarter of the Legislative Council was elected every three years by members of the Legislative Assembly and the Legislative Council, rather than being appointed by the Governor. In 1962 Indigenous Australians gained the right to vote in all state elections. In 1978, the Council became a directly elected body in a program of electoral reform introduced by the Wran Labor government.
The number of members was reduced to 45, although transitional arrangements meant that there were 43 members from 1978 to 1981, 44 from 1981 to 1984. Further reform in 1991 by the Greiner Liberal-National government saw the size of the Legislative Council cut to 42 members, with half being elected every 4 years. In 1991, the Legislative Assembly was reduced from 109 to 99 Members and to 93 members in 1999; the Parliament building was built on the orders of Governor Lachlan Macquarie to be Sydney's second major hospital because, when he arrived in Sydney, he recognised the need for a new hospital. In 1810, he awarded the contract to Alexander Riley and Dr. D'Arcy Wentworth; the contract gave the builders the right to import 45,000 gallons of rum, for which they paid a duty of 3 shillings a gallon. They were able to sell it for a huge profit and in turn the government refunded them the duty as a payment for their work, thereby gaining for their construction the title of the'Rum Hospital'. Consisting of three buildings, the central main building was demolished in 1879 to make way for the new Sydney Hospital, completed in 1885.
The first building, now known as the Sydney Mint, was given to the Royal Mint in 1851 to become the
Beacon Hill, New South Wales
Beacon Hill is a suburb of northern Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia 17 kilometres north-east of the Sydney central business district, in the local government area of Northern Beaches Council. It is part of the Northern Beaches region. Beacon Hill was given the title when the Department of Lands built a trigometric beacon there in 1881. Little is known of local aboriginal culture in the Beacon Hill area but other local areas towards the sea have a rich and diverse aboriginal background. There are some aboriginal carvings in rocks to the north of Red Hill. Daniel Egan, a member of the NSW Parliament, purchased two 40-acre parcels of land on 5 October 1857. Most of the houses in the suburb were built in the boom days after World War II, in the 1950s and 1960s. Many of the streets in Beacon Hill are named after notable battles, military men or places where Australian troops served in World War II; these include Kokoda Crescent, Goroka Place and Lae Place. Beacon Hill Post Office opened on 1 August 1949 and closed in 1986.
Beacon Hill High School was established in 1964 and closed in 2002. According to the 2016 census of Population, there were 7,457 people in Beacon Hill. 67.5% of people were born in Australia. The most common countries of birth were England 6.2%, China 3.3%, Italy 2.3% and New Zealand 2.3%. 76.5% of people only spoke English at home. Other languages spoken at home included Italian 3.6%, Mandarin 3.0% and Cantonese 1.5%. The most common responses for religious affiliation were Catholic 29.9%, No Religion 28.3% and Anglican 16.6%. Beacon Hill is serviced by State Transit. For many years there have been plans put forward withdrawn again for a heavy rail line to be constructed to service the Northern Beaches. Most residents therefore drive motor vehicles to get around; this lookout is located atop Beacon Hill itself. Views of the entire eastern half of the Sydney region may be had from the summit, 152 metres above sea level. Views extend from the southern outskirts of Sydney, west to the Blue Mountains and north to Gosford and the Central Coast.
The skyline of the city is to the south. Ships, pleasure craft and occasional migratory whales can be seen out to sea in the east; the lookout is popular with locals on New Year's Eve when the firework displays across Sydney Harbour are visible 11 kilometres to the south. The lookout may be reached via Warringah Road. There is a small parking area adjacent to the road with stairs leading to the summit. Red Hill, not to be confused with Beacon Hill, is located at the northern end of the suburb behind the former Beacon Hill High School site. From here there are views across to the Governor Phillip Lookout, onwards to the city; the views to the north are over the eastern sections of the Garigal National Park, to Cromer and beyond into the suburbs of Elanora and Ingleside. The Red Hill Preservation Society attempted to prevent a state government development of Red Hill in the early 1990s The Governor Phillip Lookout Trust was gazetted on 9 December 1966 and was charged with the responsibility not only of protecting and developing the area as an historical feature of the district, but for the preservation and propagation of the native flora and fauna that surrounds the lookout.
The first meeting took place on 10 April 1966. On 13 October 2017 The Hon Paul Toole, Minister for Lands and Forestry transferred responsibility for the Trust to Northern Beaches Council
Watsons Bay, New South Wales
Watsons Bay is a harbourside, eastern suburb of Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. Watsons Bay is located 11 km north-east of the Sydney central business district, in the local government area of the Municipality of Woollahra. Watsons Bay sits on the end of the South Head peninsula and takes its name from the sheltered bay and anchorage on its western side, in Port Jackson, it provides views across the harbour to the Sydney Harbour Bridge. The Gap is an ocean cliff on the eastern side with views to Manly at North Head and the Pacific Ocean. Vaucluse is the only adjacent suburb, to the south; the original inhabitants of the area, now known as Watsons Bay, were the Cadigal people. The Cadigal referred to the area as Kutti; this indigenous group of people fished and collected shellfish in the waters and bays off South Head. They acquired their resources from Camp Cove and carved rock engravings there, which have since eroded from the cliff faces and rock surfaces that line the coastline.
Watson's Bay was named after Robert Watson of HMS Sirius, when he had to beach his three vessels at Camp Cove for many years because of their being sold by the Provost Marshal. Watson was appointed harbour pilot and harbourmaster of the port of Sydney in 1811 and the first superintendent of Macquarie Lighthouse in 1816; the first grant of 20 acres was made to Edward Laing in 1793 in the Camp Cove Area. Watsons Bay was an isolated fishing village. On the night of 20 August 1857, Dunbar a sailing ship became shipwrecked against the cliffs below The Gap, with 121 lives lost; the Dunbar had mistaken the bay of The Gap for the harbour entrance. In 1910, at Jacob’s Ladder, the anchor from the ship was recovered along with other relics and were placed in a museum behind the old Town Hall in Military Road by Vaucluse Council; the anchor was transferred to the cliffs of Gap Park by Ald. Coombes and a memorial was unveiled in August 1930. Today, The Gap is known as a notorious suicide spot; the City to Watson's Bay tram line was extended from Edgecliff to Signal Hill Station, Watson's Bay in 1903 with further extensions to Gap Park in 1909.
The latter extension included a new tram terminus adjacent to The Gap and a tram cutting cut into the rock face in Gap Park that ran above and parallel to Gap Road that descended to street level before terminating. The line from the city commenced with a loop at the corner of Erskine and Day Streets near Wynyard station, it proceeded south down Day Street before turning left into King Street passing through Queen's Square at St James station. It made a right hand turn into College Street, headed south before turning left into Boomerang Street; the line continued left into William Street, through King's Cross and along Bayswater Road and into New South Head Road at Rushcutters Bay. The line followed the course of New and Old South Head Roads before turning right into Gap Park. After turning right into Gap Park a single track passed through narrow rock cuttings, low cliffs and rugged back-drops, turning its way down to the terminus at Watsons Bay; the line had its own depot and city terminus and operated independently, although it was connected to the main Sydney tram network.
In 1949, the line from Rose Bay to Watson's Bay reopened in 1950 due to public protest. In 1950, the line down King Street to Erskine Street closed and a new terminus constructed at Queens Square; the remainder of the line closed in 1960, the tracks were removed and in 1964 the Council re-vegetated the area around the former tramway cutting in gap park with the object of restoring the area. When walking up the steps to The Gap at Watsons Bay, there is flat ground in between two sets of steps; this continues for a fair way in both directions, is the old tram right of way. The present-day State Transit route 324 follows the route of the former tram line as far as the point where the tramway turned off Old South Head Road into Gap Park; the bus and tram routes meet again near the terminus in Military Road. In 1942, during World War II, the Sydney Harbour anti-submarine boom net was constructed on Georges Head and was designed to prevent enemy submarines from entering into Sydney Harbour; the boom net spanned the entire width of Port Jackson and a boom net winch house was located on Liangs Point, Watsons Bay.
On the night of 31 May 1942, three Japanese midget submarines attempted to enter Sydney Harbour in what became known as the Attack on Sydney Harbour. One of the Japanese midget submarines became entangled in the boom net. During this period, Nielsen Park was used as an anti-aircraft base; the base had its own interim wooden barracks and anti-aircraft guns. In Gap Park, a gun emplacement for a small calibre gun, never installed was intended for use during World War II; the novelist Christina Stead lived in a house in Pacific Street from 1911 to 1928, after which she went overseas. The house is marked with a plaque mounted in the footpath. Stead was the first writer chosen for the Woollahra Council Plaque Scheme, inaugurated in 2014; the house, known as Boongarre or Boongaree was built in the 1870s. It is sometimes known as Stead House, it was acquired by the soccer player Mark Schwarzer. In 2011, Woollahra Council voted to confirm the heritage status of the house, it is now listed on the council's heritage list.
In the 2016 Census, there were 850 people in Watsons Bay. 64.6% of people were born in Australia and 78.0% of people only spoke English at home. The most common responses for