Parramatta Female Factory Precinct is Australia's earliest convict institutional site associated with women and children where you will find the historic Female Factory and later Lunatic Asylum and the Roman Catholic Orphan(age) School later occupied as the Parramatta Girls Industrial Training School (Home).

Located in Fleet St Nth Parramatta the Parramatta Female Factory Precinct is about a 10 minute walk from Parramatta CBDand is one of the most significant sites associated with convict women and Forgotten Australians.



Parramatta Female Factory Australia's first purpose built institution for female convicts operated from 1821 until 1847.


In 1847 the Female Factory was re-purposed as an Invalid & Lunatic Asylum, now operating as Cumberland Hospital. 

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Roman Catholic Orphan School RCOS - Australia's first purpose built orphanage for Catholic children operated from 1844 until 1886.

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In 1887 RCOS was re-purposed as Parramatta Girls Industrial School - the principal child welfare institution for girls in NSW from 1886 until 1974.

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Memory to Action

PFFP Memory Project is a social history and contemporary art project centered on the historic institutions of the Parramatta Female Factory Precinct.

We aim to capture and interpret the history, experience and legacy of institutional confinement at this site, to promote awareness about the impact of institutionalisation and childhood detention and to activate the precinct as Australia's first Site of Conscience.

Memory Project Living Traces workshop 2016
Living Traces

At the stroke of a pen my life changed forever.....

Living Traces is a distinctive printmaking project where former residents of the Parramatta Girls Home retrieve remaining traces of their time as teenagers in the Home, more than 50 years ago. 

Living Traces

An exhibition of limited edition prints and artists books designed and produced by former residents of Parramatta Girls Home in collaboration with artists Gwen Harrison and Sue Anderson curated by Lily Hibberd.

Where: Kamballa, 1 Fleet St~ Parramatta North ~NSW
When: 2-6pm~ 25 & 30 September ~1 & 2 October 2016


Parragirls is a support network and contact register established in 2006 for Forgotten Australians and Stolen Generations of the Parramatta Girls Home. We provide information on how to obtain your welfare files and records, support services, open days and social activities, the Royal Commission into institutional responses to child sexual abuse, and consultations with the NSW Government on the Parramatta Girls Home Memorial.

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Precinct NEWS

Parramatta North Urban Transformation

In 2014 the NSW Government announced plans for Parramatta North Urban Transformation which would see new hi rise residential and commercial development at the precinct, the preservation of the 19th century Female Factory - Asylum and Roman Catholic Orphan School - Girls Training School and the demolition of most 20th century institutional buildings and structures.

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National Heritage Listing

The Australian Government is pleased to announce the Parramatta Female Factory Precinct in Western Sydney will be assessed for possible inclusion on the National Heritage List. Written comments on whether the Parramatta Female Factory Precinct should be included on the National Heritage List are now being sought. Written comments must be lodged by 23 September 2016.

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Written comments to:

Australian Heritage Council

GPO Box 787

Canberra ACT 2601


Parramatta Girls Home Memorial

In November 2014, the Minister for Family and Community Services (FACS) announced that a memorial would be built at the Parramatta Girls’ Home site to acknowledge the women who experienced abuse as children at the home. FACS is committed to building a place of remembrance and reflection for former residents, their families, as well as the wider community.

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Public Transport:

A free shuttle bus leaves from Parramatta Station or Rivercat Wharf every 10 minutes. Alight at Parramatta Leagues Club and then proceed to Fennel  and Fleet Streets. 

ADvice for visitors

The historic buildings of the Precinct are not open for public access and there are no public facilities for visitors. Most of the historic buildings can be seen from Fleet St.

Download a site map here:

 Historic records for Parramatta Female Factory, Lunatic Asylum, Roman Catholic Orphan School and Parramatta Girls Home. 

 National Heritage listing of the Parramatta Female Factory Precinct, significance, values, criteria and State Heritage List information.

Parramatta Female Factory Precinct holds a fascinating maze of stories and questions; here are some of those stories......