Division of Gwydir


Australian House of Representatives Division
NamesakeGwydir River

The Division of Gwydir was an Australian electoral division in the state of New South Wales. The division was proclaimed in 1900, and was one of the original 65 divisions to be contested at the first federal election. As a result of the electoral redistribution of 13 September 2006, Gwydir was abolished and ceased to exist at the 2007 federal election.

Gwydir was named for the Gwydir River (which in turn was named by the explorer Allan Cunningham after his patron Peter Burrell, Baron Gwydyr, who took his title from Gwydir Castle in Wales). The division was located in western New South Wales, and at the time of its abolition included the towns of Bourke, Moree, Mudgee and Brewarrina.

The seat was a stronghold of the Australian Workers' Union, and until the 1940s was one of the few country seats where the Australian Labor Party usually did well. It was in Labor hands for all but six terms from 1903 to 1949. However, it was held by the National Party from 1949 onward, and from the mid-1970s onward it was usually fairly safe for that party.

Its last Labor member, William Scully, was a Cabinet minister in the Ben Chifley government. The final member, John Anderson, was Leader of the National Party and Deputy Prime Minister in the Howard Government until he resigned the position.

In September 2006 the New South Wales redistribution commissioners decided to abolish Gwydir. The abolition took effect at the 2007 federal election. Most of the division became part of the Division of Parkes, while some towns in the Upper Hunter Shire (mainly Scone, Aberdeen, Merriwa and Murrurundi) were absorbed into the Division of Hunter.


Image Member Party Term Notes
  George Cruickshank.jpg George Cruickshank
Protectionist 29 March 1901
23 November 1903
Previously held the New South Wales Legislative Assembly seat of Inverell. Retired
  William Webster.jpg William Webster
Labor 16 December 1903
14 November 1916
Previously held the New South Wales Legislative Assembly seat of Moree. Served as minister under Hughes. Lost seat
  National Labor 14 November 1916
17 February 1917
  Nationalist 17 February 1917 –
13 December 1919
  Lucien Lawrence Cunningham 01 (cropped).jpg Lou Cunningham
Labor 13 December 1919
14 November 1925
Lost seat
  Aubrey Abbott.jpg Aubrey Abbott
Country 14 November 1925
12 October 1929
Served as minister under Bruce. Lost seat
  Lucien Lawrence Cunningham 02 (cropped).jpg Lou Cunningham
Labor 12 October 1929
19 December 1931
Lost seat. Later elected to the New South Wales Legislative Assembly seat of Coogee in 1941
  Aubrey Abbott.jpg Aubrey Abbott
Country 19 December 1931
28 March 1937
Resigned in order to become Administrator of the Northern Territory
  William Scully.jpg William Scully
Labor 8 May 1937
10 December 1949
Previously held the New South Wales Legislative Assembly seat of Namoi. Served as minister under Curtin, Forde and Chifley. Lost seat
  Thomas Treloar.jpg Thomas Treloar
Country 10 December 1949
15 November 1953
Died in office
  Ian Allan.jpg Ian Allan
Country 19 December 1953
30 April 1969
Resigned in order to retire from politics
  No image.svg Ralph Hunt
Country 7 June 1969
2 May 1975
Served as minister under Gorton, McMahon and Fraser. Resigned in order to retire from politics
  National Country 2 May 1975 –
16 October 1982
  Nationals 16 October 1982 –
24 February 1989
  John Anderson 2001 (cropped).jpg John Anderson
Nationals 15 April 1989
17 October 2007
Served as minister and Deputy Prime Minister under Howard. Retired after Gwydir was abolished in 2007

Election results


  • Psephos: Adam Carr's Election Archive
  • The Poll Bludger
  • ABC Elections
  • Australian Electoral Commission