William Townley Pinhey

Pharmacist And Coroner

Terms served on Council

Title Council From To
Alderman Glebe 1861 1870
Alderman Glebe 1873 1875

Family background

William Townley Pinhey was born on 26 March 1820 at Shoreham, Sussex, England, son of naval doctor William Townley Pinhey and Mary. On 18 March 1843 at Sydney he married Mary Bell Thomas, who died on 2 November 1872. On 11 September 1875 he married for a second time to Mary Elizabeth Bingle at Newcastle. He died at 128 Glebe Road Glebe on 27 October 1895, aged 75 years. Mary Pinhey died on 22 June 1897, aged 72 years.

Occupation & interests

Educated at Christ’s Hospital, London, Pinhey was apprenticed to a London pharmacist, and employed in Sydney by druggist Ambrose Foss, and as clerk for solicitor George Allen. Pinhey did not complete an apprenticeship in either pharmacy or law. He added drugs to William Lipscomb’s grocery, W Maitland from 1845 to 1849, and then conducted operated on his own account as chemist and druggist in Sydney from 1850 and remained in business until 1877. Pinhey was founder of the Pharmaceutical Society of NSW, and its secretary. He left an estate of 1,503 pounds sworn for probate purposes.

Community activity

Pinhey took an active part in the affairs of Anglican churches where he worshipped. He was a churchwarden of St Marys Maitland 1845-47, a churchwarden of Christ Church St Laurence 1856-59, and a City Coroner in the 1870s. Pinhey was a Justice of the Peace (JP).

Local government service

William Pinhey was an alderman on Glebe Council in 1861-70 and 1873-75. He developed contacts in medicine, law, industry and commerce, and was called upon on a number of occasions to be chairman of public meetings in Glebe on important issues. In 1867 Pinhey argued the ‘effluvia which arose from the Swamp (Blackwattle) was at times intolerable giving rise to miasmatic and other fevers and placing Glebe in an unenviable position in mortality tables of the Statistical register’. He urged the government to reclaim the swamp.


Haines, Gregory & Pharmaceutical Society of New South Wales 1976, The grains and threepennorths of pharmacy: pharmacy in NSW 1788-1976, Lowden Pub, Kilmore, Vic

NSW Legislative Assembly V & P 1885-86, 8. p. 955: 1887-88, 2, p. 1025

Sydney Morning Herald, 14 February 1861, p. 4

Sydney Mail, 26 October 1867, p. 5, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article166802221

Sydney Morning Herald, 28 October 1895, p. 1

‘Death of Mr W T Pinhey’, The Daily Telegraph, 28 October 1895, p. 5, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article238537850

‘Death of Mr. Pinhey, JP’, Australian Town and Country Journal, 2 November 1895, p. 38, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article71217922

Sydney Mail, 9 November 1895 p. 961, https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/162670262


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