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Opening on October 28 1933, Northern Suburbs Memorial Gardens and Crematorium is the second oldest such facility in New South Wales, and we hold pride of place as the most historic and most beautiful crematorium on Sydney's North Shore.
The Cremation Society of New South Wales was formed in 1908 to promote cremations and to assist in the development of crematoria across the state. In 1916, the New South Wales Cremation Company Ltd was created. This was a commercial body designed to independently raise the funds to plan and build crematoria, freeing such developments from being dependent on State government funding.
The outbreak of World War I put on hold the plans of both the Cremation Society of New South Wales and the New South Wales Cremation Company Ltd. However, activity to promote cremations and to build crematoria recommenced shortly after the conclusion of the War. By 1922, the Company had selected an architect and by 1923, a private company, Cremation Society of Australia Ltd, had formed to promote cremations across the nation, and to raise funds for their development.
Archival footage of Northern Suburbs Memorial Gardens and Crematorium's Chapel, taken by Harold Cazneaux. Image courtesy of Mitchell Library, State Library of NSW [PXD 806/40-132].In December of 1931, the NSW State government made the Delhi Road site at North Ryde available for development into a crematorium. Work began in February of 1933 and the facility was officially opened on 28 October 1933. The completed facility was complemented with beautiful art deco statues, Royal Dalton tiles, classic iron work and other period features. Northern Suburbs Memorial Gardens is a heritage listed site and often features in historical tours of Sydney and the North Shore. The first cremation took place on 30 October 1933.