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George Tibbits

(William)

(b London, 1796; d Sydney, March 9, 1879).

Australian architect of English birth. His early experience was in London as a military surveyor and draughtsman in government service and then in private practice. He arrived in Sydney in March 1840 as an assistant surveyor in the office of the Surveyor-General of New South Wales, Thomas L. Mitchell. Under Mitchell he was appointed town surveyor in Sydney, becoming Colonial Architect of New South Wales in 1835. He is particularly admired for his designs for government buildings in the Greek Revival idiom, of which one is extant, though extended, the Darlinghurst Court House (1837). Another surviving government building is the Maitland Gaol (1847–50), New South Wales. As Colonial Architect he is credited as the chief designer of government buildings, although evidence suggests that capable subordinate clerks of works such as James Rattenbury (fl 1839–45) and Henry Ginn (fl 1846–51) also had that duty for projects remote from Sydney. Other surviving designs attributed to Lewis are the Berrima Court House and the Hartley Court House, both in rural New South Wales. He also supervised the construction of the Tudor Gothic Government House in Sydney (begun ...