People Australia

  • searches all National Centre of Biography websites
  • searches all National Centre of Biography websites
  • searches all National Centre of Biography websites

Browse Lists:

Cultural Advice

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this website contains names, images, and voices of deceased persons.

In addition, some articles contain terms or views that were acceptable within mainstream Australian culture in the period in which they were written, but may no longer be considered appropriate.

These articles do not necessarily reflect the views of The Australian National University.

Older articles are being reviewed with a view to bringing them into line with contemporary values but the original text will remain available for historical context.

Grace Teresa Lightfoot (1894–1962)

This article was published:

Grace Teresa Lightfoot, née Quirk (1894-1962) political activist and mayoress

Birth: 29 September 1894 at Tocumwal, New South Wales, daughter of Frederick Grace Quirk (1848-1931), a farmer, born at Plymouth, Devon, England, and Elizabeth Victoria, née Cossey (1861-1932), born at Ballarat, Victoria.  Marriage: 1921 at Northcote, Victoria, to native-born Richard Henry Lightfoot (1889-1954), a saddler and sometime Labor mayor of Richmond, born at Mackay, Queensland, who was a widower with two children. They had one daughter and two sons. Death: 13 July 1962 in her residence at 166 Elizabeth Street, Richmond, Melbourne, Victoria. 

  • Her father was convicted at Moama, New South Wales, of larceny and gaoled in September 1901. He had further run ins with the law in the following years.
  • Her brother, Private John Quirk (1897-1918), a labourer, enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force on 20 July 1916. He served with the 58th Battalion in France and was killed in action on 13 March 1918.
  • Grace Lightfoot was an Australian Labor Party member for forty years. She was an active campaigner in Richmond (Victoria).
  • Twice mayoress of Richmond (1929-30 and 1939-40).
  • Helped to re-form Richmond North ALP branch after the 1955 split.
  • Founding member Richmond/Hawthorn Women's Organising Committee and delegate to ALP Women's Organising Committee.
  • Active member of New Zealand Congress for World Peace and Disarmament. At her death she was vice-president of Richmond Ladies Benovolent Society, president Richmond Baby Health Centre.
  • Cause of death: coronary occlusion, coronary arteriosclerosis, hypertension and bronchitis.

Sources
ALP Victoria branch Central Executive Report 1962/63; Fact, 2 August 1962; Merrifield papers, State Library of Victoria.

Citation details

'Lightfoot, Grace Teresa (1894–1962)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, https://peopleaustralia.anu.edu.au/biography/lightfoot-grace-teresa-34271/text42996, accessed 23 April 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Quirk, Grace Teresa
Birth

29 September, 1894
Tocumwal, New South Wales, Australia

Death

13 July, 1962 (aged 67)
Richmond, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Cause of Death

heart disease

Cultural Heritage

Includes subject's nationality; their parents' nationality; the countries in which they spent a significant part of their childhood, and their self-identity.

Occupation
Key Organisations
Political Activism