There’s more to Ingleside than first meets the eye

There’s more to Ingleside than first meets the eye

Ingleside is one of the leafy and more rural suburbs in the cluster that makes up postcode 2101, including Narrabeen, North Narrabeen, Warriewood and Elanora Heights.

There is more to Ingleside than meets the eye. It’s one of the Northern Beaches’ lesser-known destinations but the suburb has a rich history and many points of interest.

Ingleside’s origins

Originally land falling under the claim of the Awabakal and Guringai People, Ingleside gained its western name from Ingleside House.

This ‘mansion’ was built by a notorious industrial chemist, fraudster and possible spy who went by the name of Baron Von Bierens. Also establishing the powder works that gives Powderworks Road its name, Von Beirens was a somewhat shady character who died in prison after being charged with fraudulent bankruptcy.

Despite the fanciful stories that he and his wife were German spies concocting secret explosive recipes in the hills of Ingleside, the truth is more mundane. Most likely, this Ingleside character simply went bankrupt after the government marked the iron cylinders he used at the powder works as unsafe.

You can explore more history down the hillside of Ingleside and Elanora Heights in a previous article we wrote called History on the hill: exploring postcode 2101’s past.

But let’s continue on with the history of the flatter side of Ingleside.

Famous locals

Over the years, Ingleside grew to become the pleasant home to approx. 1,000 residents that it is today. The suburb has seen two notable residents over that time that have put it on the map; singer Smoky Dawson and Australia’s only Ba’hai temple.

  • Smoky Dawson

Australian country and western singer Smoky Dawson rose to fame in the 1940s and was a believed entertainer until his death in 2008 at 94 years old.

Dawson’s wife, Dot, bought a property in Ingleside for Dawson that became known as Smoky Dawson’s Ranch and Dawson’s Wild West Headquarters.

For many years Dawson and his wife hosted country music events, horse riding and children’s entertainment at the ranch until it was gutted by fire in 1979. Here’s a photo that might bring back memories.

Smoky and Dot also reared horses on the ranch and had particular success with their famous racehorse Flash.

  • The Baháʼí Temple

The Baháʼí faith, an inclusive and unifying modern religion. As it grew in Australia during the early 1950s, a location was sought to build a temple. Land was purchased in Ingleside in 1956, and Australia’s first and only Baháʼí temple was completed and dedicated in 1961.

The Sydney Baháʼí temple was the fourth of its kind built in the world (there are only eight today) and it remains a stunning landmark high on the hilltop of Ingleside. You can see it from many vantage points as you drive around the Northern Beaches, including the intersection of the Wakehurst Parkway and Northern Beaches Hospital.

This place of worship is open to people of all beliefs and many local expats find it a comforting spot to visit when they are thinking of far off family and friends.

Ingleside attractions

  1. Horse riding: considering it is home to the Smoky Dawson’s Ranch, it is no surprise that Ingleside has a thriving equestrian community. For one, Ingleside is home to Akhal Teke Horses Australia. Akhal Teke is an ancient horse breed that originated in Central Asia. Local stables, Timbara Valley, breed and manage this special breed of horses and also run a riding school. Ingleside is also home to the Loane Equestrian Centre, which specialises in dressage training and boards horses owned by local horse riding enthusiasts.
  2. Country club: The Monash Country Club is a world-class golfing green and superb golf course with amazing facilities. It’s in such high demand for memberships that it has a waitlist. If you are one of the lucky ones to become a club member, then you’ll enjoy sweeping views along the Northern Beaches coastline. If you are not a club member you can still book the club to host a wedding, a corporate event or Bar or Bat Mitzvah. It also holds a pro-golf shop.
  3. Scouts & Camps: With Scout groups in surrounding Narrabeen, Collaroy, and Mona Vale, Scouts of NSW have their very own bush camp in Ingleside. Scouting activities are a wonderful way for kids to learn and grow in confidence and life skills, and the Ingleside Scout Camp offers great bush campaign with amenities, and takes kids bushwalking and birdwatching. In addition, there is a Christian center called Camp Kedron that holds adventure holidays, leadership training and even surfing camps for kids to teens.
  4. Galstaun College: Believe it or not we have a lot of Eastern European/Western Asian heritage in the 2101 postcode. And to compliment this we have a 30+ year old school, Galstaun Colleage, that supports families that speak English, but also want to retain their cultural history and speak Armenian. This type of international language school is not alone as we have a German school and Japanese school in the neighbouring suburb of Terrey Hills.
  5. Nurseries: A visit to Ingleside has to include the endearing New Leaf Nursery and Landscaping, especially if you have children. New Leaf specialises in sustainable gardening with a focus on family involvement. Along with all the usual gardening supplies, New Leaf also has a huge array of edible plants and offers landscaping services to help you create your perfect garden. The kids will also love to hang out in the chicken coop. A wonderful petting experience that entertains the kids whilst you look around the nursery.
  6. Monica’s Doggie Rescue: If you are looking for a pet in the Northern Beaches, the best place to go is the Ingleside Doggie Rescue. This shelter has a no kill policy and relies on donations and volunteers to support its endeavours to rehome dogs, cats and other pets. All animals are fully vaccinated and ready to find love. But be aware that there is an application process (and a small fee). Monica and her team are very careful in matching owners to suitable animals, so that it’s a positive experience for all involved. Once you visit the website, and visit a prospective pet, we assure you … you will fall in love!

Well there you have it. There’s lots to learn and plenty to do or be aware of in Ingleside. If we have missed any of your favourite spots around 2101 let us know. Leave us a comment on our Facebook page to spread the word!

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