Hon. Sir Kenneth Whistler Street K.C.M.G.

State Records Authority of New South Wales
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Kenneth Whistler Street was born on 28 January 1890, to Belinda and Phillip Whistler Street . He attended Homebush Grammar, and Sydney Grammar School (1903 - 1908). He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Sydney University in 1911, and subsequently completed a Law degree with Second Class honours in 1914. Whilst at University he won the Harris and Wigram Allen Scholarship and the Pitt Corbett prize. During the First World War he served in the 6th Duke of Cornwall's Light infantry in France. He was discharged as unfit for active service due to aggravation of an old football injury, and subsequently served in the Home services in Australia . (1) Kenneth Street was admitted to the Bar on 12 March 1915. He began lecturing at the Law School of the University of Sydney from 1921 to 1927. The Subjects he taught included Legal Interpretation, Contracts, Mercantile Law and Torts and Legal Ethics. On 16 December 1927 he was appointed to serve on the reconstituted Industrial Commission. In 1931 he was appointed to the Supreme Court bench on retirement of Sir David Ferguson. Kenneth Street became Acting Chief Justice and then Chief Justice from 1950. He retired from the post upon his 70 th Birthday in 1960. (2) In 1952 he became a Knight of St John of Jerusalem. In 1956 he was appointed K.C.M.G. The University of Sydney conferred the Degree of Doctor of Laws (Honoris Causa.). Kenneth Street was appointed Lieutenant Governor from 1951 to 1969. Due to increase litigation after the War he expanded the number of judges in the Supreme Court, and improved faculties in the court. (3) In 1916 he married Jessie Lillington, a leading social activist and feminist. Their four children were born between 1918 and 1926. (4) Their youngest Son Laurence (Registered Person No. 36) was born in 1926. He also entered the bar, and was appointed as a Chief Justice. When Hon. Sir Philip Whistler (See Reg No. 35) and Hon. Sir Kenneth Whistler Street were Judges of the Supreme Court of New South Wales, it was believed to be the only instance in Britain or Australia, up to that time, where father and son had sat as members of the same Bench at the same time. (5) Kenneth Whistler Street died on 19 February 1972. Footnotes (1) p.1 (Website accessed 10/12/2001) (2) Ibid p. 1 (3) The NSW Law Almanac, 2000 LBC Information Services, Sydney, 2000 p.48 (4)The Life of Jessie Street, (Website accessed 10/12/2001) (5) Who's Who in Australia", 1971, Melbourne, Herald and Weekly Times, 1935 - 1988. p. 871

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