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Collier, Alice ( - 1950)

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia


The Collier sisters - Annette, Alice and Edith - came to public notice in 1954 with the endowment of the £1.25 million Collier Charitable Fund. By 2007, the corpus of the fund was worth $88 million.


Alice, Annette and Edith Collier were daughters of Jenkin Collier, who arrived in Melbourne from Wales in 1852 at the age of 23. Jenkin Collier worked in the building trade, constructing railway lines from Melbourne to Echuca and Deniliquin to Moama, and became involved in the pastoral development of Queensland.

The Colliers lived at Werndew, a mansion on Toorak Road. The three sisters were educated at Melbourne's Presbyterian Ladies' College, while their brother Herbert attended Melbourne Grammar School. Jenkin Collier died at the age of 91, leaving his estate to his family. His daughters were devoted to one another, and never married. They travelled extensively but lived an otherwise unpretentious existence, attending St. John's Church regularly and spending very little of the substantial annual income that they received from the Collier estate. They gave generously to charity, but always insisted on anonymity.

The wills of Annette, Alice and Edith Collier - who died in 1947, 1950 and 1954 respectively - held that two-fourteenths of the Collier Charitable Fund's annual income be given to the Lord Mayor's Fund. By 2006, the Lord Mayor's Fund alone had distributed over $30 million to various hospitals and charities using its share of the Collier money.

Sources used to compile this entry: Hone, J. Ann, 'Collier, Jenkin (1829 - 1921)', in Australian Dictionary of Biography Online, Australian National University, 2006,; Lord Mayor's Fund, Lord Mayor's Fund News Report, Contains article 'Our Thanks to the Colliers', Melbourne, 1995.

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