Nellie Grace Ibbott (1889-1970), was born at Leyton, Essex, England, she was the daughter of John Charles Pugh, printing machine manager, and Ellen Beatrice. She then married Alfred Thomas Ibbott, a piano-maker, in 1914. Nellie and Alfred lived happily together without children. They both moved to Australia in 1923. In 1928 Nellie participated in her first election to fill a vacancy in the Ivanhoe Riding of the Heidelberg Shire Council, she narrowly defeated her male opponent and became the first woman on the council. Nellie also went on to serve as the first woman in Victoria to hold mayoral office in 1943-44 for the city of Heidelberg.

Nellie worked hard to improve conditions in our area; she focused on such matters as unemployment, health, increased police protection, improved railway stations and better bus services. She was also responsible for establishing the Heidelberg Benevolent Society. During her time on the council, more emphasis was placed on community services. Councillor Ibbott also encouraged the arts in the City of Heidelberg. After twenty-two years of service, she was defeated in the elections in 1950. Nellie was known as strong debater in the council chamber and she believed that if men and women worked together they could achieve anything.

Sadly, Nellie passed away in 1970 and fourteen years later a local park in Livingstone Street, Ivanhoe, was named after her due to her influence on the area. In 1991, a room was also named after her in the Civic Centre Precinct.

ennlfrdeit

From The Principal