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A creation of two women

The Forrest Centre could directly be classed as a creation of two women; The Venerable Mary Potter, who in England founded the religious congregation of the Little Company of Mary (LCM), and Miss Ethel Forrest, a resident of Wagga Wagga.

Ethel Forrest was considered by many to be an eccentric recluse. When she died in June 1977 having lived much of her life in frugal simplicity, she left the bulk of her large estate to the Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn. Her request was that the money be used to establish a hospital “like St Lukes”. St Lukes is a hospital in Sydney which looked after members of Miss Forrest’s family many years earlier.

As there was no need for another hospital in Wagga Wagga, the then Regional Director of Health facilitated negotiations between the Anglican Bishop of Canberra and Goulburn and the Little Company of Mary.

The Sisters had expressed an intention to construct a nursing home to be operated in conjunction with Calvary Hospital in Wagga Wagga. However, the implementation of that vision had been delayed due to the need to undertake urgent and costly works at Calvary Hospital.

The Anglican Diocese had a long involvement in aged care in Wagga Wagga, operating a Day Care Centre from St Johns Parish Hall in conjunction with the Riverina Regional Health authority and in other coordinated welfare works in the city.

It was decided to apply to the Supreme Court to vary the terms of the will. It was considered that the construction of a 60 bed nursing home in combination with an assessment and rehabilitation and day care centre would be in keeping with the wishes of Miss Forrest.

Extensive renovations have recently been carried out providing residents with single room accommodation and shared ensuites.


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Lewisham Avenue,
Wagga Wagga
NSW 2650
Phone: (02) 6932 3011
Fax: (02) 6925 1830
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