The Returned & Services League of Australia (RSL) aims to promote and support the wellbeing, compensation and commemoration of serving and ex-serving Defence Force members and their families. The Lidcombe RSL Sub Branch provides welfare, advocacy and assistance to all veterans and ex-service personnel.
The Lidcombe RSL Sub Branch is thought to have originally been formed in 1920 but apparently ceased to operate around 1925 due to a lack of RSL Members. A small group then embarked on a membership drive with the result that a new Sub Branch Charter was granted in 1927. Over the next few years the Sub Branch spent most of its time consolidating and raising funds for the construction of a Memorial Hall.
The Memorial Hall was opened in 1935, the same year that proposals were put on paper to establish the Lidcombe Bowling Club close to the RSL Memorial Hall on the basis that the bowlers would use the RSL facilities to create income for the latter.
In the mid-1950s outdoor lawn bowls was experiencing a boom. The Lidcombe Workmen’s Bowling Club was formed in 1955 on land at the Club and, a few years later, Lidcombe RSL Memorial Club established its own greens (1960) and clubhouse (1964) in nearby Wyatt Park. The Lidcombe Bowling Club in James Street, Lidcombe is still active today but time has seen the demise of other local bowling clubs.
In November 2008, Lidcombe RSL Club had its 6 Taylor Street premises acquired by Auburn City Council. Community consultation workshops were held in June 2009 and the building is now used by council for community facilities.
The Lidcombe RSL Sub Branch was rescued by DOOLEYS Lidcombe Catholic Club in February 2009 and the Sub Branch offices are located on the DOOLEYS Lidcombe property.
The RSL at Lidcombe today
The RSL Sub Branch conducts a number of annual significant events, among them the ANZAC Remembrance Service on the Sunday prior to ANZAC Day and the ANZAC Dawn Service on 25 April, both at Remembrance Park, Lidcombe. The Dawn Service is followed by a breakfast at DOOLEYS Lidcombe Catholic Club where all attendees are welcomed.
For further information, please contact the Lidcombe RSL Sub Branch on 9649 2831.