Bronte in Sydney

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Bronte is a beachside suburb of Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. Bronte is located 8 kilometres east of the Sydney central business district, in the Waverley Council local government area of the Eastern Suburbs.

Bronte Beach sits on Nelson Bay, surrounded by Bronte Park. Bronte offers scenic cliff-top walking paths south to Coogee via the Waverley Cemetery and north to Tamarama and Bondi Beach. The cliff-top path offers views which extend from Ben Buckler in the north to Malabar in the south. Bronte is located about 2.5 km south of Bondi Beach.

The suburb has been declared the best of 641 Sydney suburbs by the Sydney Morning Herald's Good Suburbs Guide.


Robert Lowe who later became Viscount Sherbrooke, bought 42 acre of land from Mortimer Lewis (1796–1879), the Colonial Architect who owned most of the frontage in the area in the 1830s. His home was completed in 1845 and was named Bronte House, for Lord Nelson, who was the Duke of Bronte, a place in Sicily, Italy. The house, a single-storey stone bungalow located in Bronte Road, is owned by Waverley Council and leased to private tenants who hold open days a few times a year. It is now listed on the Register of the National Estate.

Lowe became a member of the New South Wales Legislative Council. He later moved back to England where he became a writer with The Times.


The former Bronte tram line branched from the North Bondi via Bondi Jct. line at Bondi Jct, running down Bronte Rd and MacPherson St to Bronte Beach. A feature of this line was the final approach to Bronte Beach in a rock cutting parallel to the Pacific Ocean. The line opened to Waverley in 1890, then to Bronte in 1911. Electric services started to Waverley in 1902, then Bronte in 1911. Through services ran from Circular Quay or Railway Square. The line was closed in 1960 and replaced by a bus service that follows the current route of bus 378.


Bronte has an important surfing culture. The Bronte surf lifesaving club was founded in 1903 and claims to be the oldest surf lifesaving club in the world.

An annual long distance ocean swimming event is held in December each year between Bondi Beach and Bronte.

Commercial area

The Bronte Road beachside shopping precinct is noteworthy because in recent years every shop has been converted into a restaurant, leaving no stores of any other type.

Notable residents

Lachlan Murdoch, son of Rupert Murdoch

Lee Perry, brother of fashion designer Alex Perry

Peter Dodds McCormick (1834–1960) was the composer of Advance Australia Fair. An Elder of Grahame Memorial Church, Victoria Street Charing Cross, he lived at Clydebank, 5 Virgil Street (now 20 Yanko Avenue) Bronte.

Dave Brown (1913–1974) described by football historians as ‘the Bradman of Rugby League’ was a Bronte boy having grown up at the beach where his parents operated the dressing sheds. His father, Denis ‘Dinny’ Brown was Waverley Council’s first Lifeguard <ref name=""/>

Heath Ledger, the Academy-Award-winning actor, lived in Bronte from 2004 until he sold his house in 2006, following intense media bombardment.

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