Bayswater Salvation Army Boys’ Home

Bayswater Salvation Army Boys Home

2 Liverpool Rd, The Basin (near cnr Mountain Highway)




Provider: Salvation Army

Year Opened: 1897; 1900; 1931

Year Closed: 1986; 1983; 1946


There appears to have been three Homes in the one location; one was a ‘reformatory’.  Also known as Bayswater Boys Home.

Deaths of people who were in Bayswater Boys Home:

*  Major Elizabeth (Bessie) Dunstan – 6th November 1945.

*  Kenneth McLeod – 8th January 1908.

*  Jonathon Stephen – 10th March 1947.

The longest established institution in the community are the buildings once known as the Salvation Army Bayswater Youth Training Centre, or No. 1 Home, or No. 2 Home, as the junior section was termed.  The No. 2 home is now used as a camp and conference centre.  The No. 1 home now operates as a farm and “SkillShare”centre.  These homes were established in 1987, on 409 acres of land part purchased from one of the original settlers, David Dobson.  They once provided help and guidance to many youths who committed offences which brought them into the hands of the police, and for younger boys who, because of neglect, were in danger of falling into criminal tendencies.  The homes originally commenced in response to a request by the Government of the day, for religious denominations to open homes to replace reformatories.

The first junior home was situated near the existing water tanks in Mountain Highway, but after being destroyed by fire in 1912, was rebuilt on Liverpool Road.  The original home was known as “The Garden Of Eden”and this name was prominently displayed on the front gate.

From 1931 to 1946 there was also a No. 3 Home at the base of Sugarloaf Hill (behind the No. 2 Home).  The No. 3 Home was a Government building transferred from Coode Island.

The senior home was rebuilt in brick in 1946, and in 1958 the junior home was rebuilt, the architect being the late Baxter Cox of “Wychwood”, The Basin.  “The Basin Boys’ Home Special School” was built very early to cater for the special needs of boys from the junior Home.  A fire in early 1972 destroyed almost half of the buildings and they eventually became vacant.  The Primary School started using the buildings and in the early 1980’s the buildings and land was amalgamated with the Primary School.

The Bayswater Youth Training Centre’s farm and associated workshops provided valuable work experiences for thousands of boys who passed through its gates and in earlier times a large staff of Salvation Army Officers had the invaluable opportunity of working alongside these boys and getting to know them through this close work contact.  (Many retired officers still have regular contact with “boys”from their time at “Bayswater”).  On 30 June 1987, the “Bayswater”Youth Training Centre was closed by a shift in Government policies regarding institutional care.


Articles in reference to home:

National Redress Scheme starts for survivors of child sexual abuse

Pedophile John Maria Beyer has been sentenced to 9years Jail: ‘Click Here’ To View The Article On The Sydney Morning Herald.

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