Sydney Blythe

Ogilvie High School, about 1940 (AOT, PH30/1/554)

Sydney Wallace Thomas Blythe (190585), architect and town planner. Blythe began his architectural education in England before moving to Tasmania in 1921, completing his studies at the Hobart Technical College. After employment with the Public Works Department, he travelled back to London to work during the Depression, returning to become the PWD's main design architect.

Over the next fifteen years Blythe was responsible for most of the state's projects, including extensions to Parliament House, technical colleges, schools and public buildings. His early-modern AG Ogilvie High School in Hobart (1936) is nationally recognised. From 1949 he was the first full-time head of the School of Architecture at the Technical College, continued a private practice, was joint master planner for the new University of Tasmania, and became a strong advocate for town planning.

Further reading: R Blythe, 'Sydney Wallace Thomas Blythe: architect and educator', MA thesis, University of Melbourne, 1998; B McNeill & L Woolley, Architecture from the edge, Hobart, 2002.

Barry McNeill and Eric Ratcliff