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Lucy Margaret Grounds

Tasmanian Honour Roll of Women logo
Lucy Grounds

Awarded for service to Government, service to the Community

Born: 1908

Died: 1987

Entered on roll: 2005

Lucy Grounds was born in Glenorchy and educated at the Hobart Ladies’ College. She married Dr Arthur Grounds in 1928, raising three children, two sons and a daughter. She lived at Waratah, Deloraine and Launceston before commencing her Parliamentary career. During World War II, Lucy was the Secretary of the Northern District Council of the Women’s Auxiliary National Service. In 1951, she stood for election to the Legislative Council following the death of her husband, who had been the sitting member for Launceston. Lucy's election slogan read ‘Chivalry is not dead: we need a lady to represent us in Parliament’ and she won easily with 51 per cent of the vote.

Lucy gave her maiden speech on 2 October 1951, and in the following month became the first woman to introduce a Bill in the Legislative Council. The Bill authorised the Launceston Marine Board to raise money for port works on the River Tamar. Her input into subsequent bills was reported in more detail when it related to matters of specific concern to women, such as Saturday shop trading, the issuing of receipts to shoppers and female jury service. In May 1952 Lucy was re-elected with 44 per cent of the vote (in a contest with four other candidates). She lost her seat in the 1958 election.

Lucy sustained an active life beyond her parliamentary role, serving as Secretary of the ALP's Launceston Central branch, Secretary of its Launceston Women's branch and on a variety of boards and committees at community level. She was Chair of the Student Teachers’ College Board, and a member of the Tasmanian Advisory Committee to the ABC, the Police and Citizens Boys Club Committee, the Launceston Committee of the YWCA and the Queen Victoria Hospital Board. Lucy was active in a range of women’s organisations including the National Council of Women, Soroptimists International, the Penguin Club, and the Business and Professional Women’s Club.

In 1960, Lucy moved to Victoria and worked at the Hermitage School (Geelong) and Methodist Ladies’ College (Kew). She returned to Hobart in 1972 and married W O Jennings in 1976. Lucy died in Melbourne in 1987.

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