Our Past

Sir Charles Lilley’s vision to provide girls with the same educational opportunities as their brothers was far ahead of its time. The opening of Brisbane Girls Grammar School in March 1875 laid the foundations for its development as a leading academic secondary school for girls. This was six years before women were admitted to universities in Sydney and Melbourne and before similar schools appeared elsewhere in the country.

The School opened as a branch of Brisbane Grammar School with fifty students who were under the direction of Lady Principal, Mrs Janet O’Connor, in premises on George Street, Brisbane. Within six months the School outgrew these premises and moved to Wickham Terrace.

By July 1882, the School was well established and the decision was made to separate from Brisbane Grammar School and to operate independently under the Grammar Schools Act . Plans were also made to move the School to its present site on Gregory Terrace and in 1884, the Main Building, designed by architect Richard Gailey, was opened to one hundred students.

Equality of opportunity has become an accepted part of our culture and Girls Grammar is proud of the role it has played in the development of education for girls in Australia.

School Prospectus – 1917


Click here to view a piece of Girls Grammar history from our archives.
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The archives collect the permanent School records and related materials which document the history of Brisbane Girls Grammar School from its inception in 1875. We invite alumni and friends of the School to donate or make available on permanent loan materials relating to the School’s history.

To donate materials to the Brisbane Girls Grammar School Archives, please contact the archivist on (T) 3332 1300   or (E) archives@bggs.qld.edu.au