The Rodd family of Barnstaple Manor
Brent Clements Rodd (1809-1898) arrived in Australia in 1822 with his father and two brothers after the death of his mother. The young Rodd secured employment with Thomas Icely an enterprising merchant and shipping agent in Sydney.
In 1833 Rodd became a solicitor and by 1838 was prosperous enough to purchase two lots of the subdivided Five Dock Estate (previously known as Five Dock Farm) from Samuel Lyons. One piece of land was at the head of Five Dock Bay in present-day Chiswick. The other was at the head of Iron Cove, where Rodd built a house which he named Barnstaple Manor, after his birthplace in Devon.
In 1839 he married Sarah Jane Robertson and they had eight sons and four daughters. In 1859 Rodd put a deposit down to buy the island in Iron Cove known variously as Snake, Robbit or Rhode island. While the deal did not go through, Rodd nonetheless renamed the island in his own name.
The remains of Barnstaple Manor were still visible until the 1920s when it was demolished and the property subdivided. Many Five Dock streets bear the names of Sarah and Brent Rodd’s children including Brent, Burnell, Clements, Janet, Lenore, Trevanion and Undine streets. While, Barnstaple Road, Rodd Island, Rodd Point and Rodd Park also recall the family’s association with the area.