Acting Judge, Matrimonial Causes Jurisdiction, Supreme Court of NSW, 09/01/1939 - 31/05/1939.
Charles Aubrey Hardwick (known as Roger) was born on 29 July 1885 at Rylstone, New South Wales, the son of George White Hardwick and his wife, Jane nee Harris. He was educated in the state school system and at the University of Sydney (BA 1913, LLB 1915). After leaving school he worked for the Department of Attorney General and of Justice, New South Wales, as a Junior Clerk at the Petty Sessions Office, Mudgee, from 7 March 1902 and as a Clerk, Petty Sessions Office, Redfern, from 1 March 1910 till 1914. When he matriculated to the University of Sydney in March 1909, he continued to work for the Public Service to pay for his tuition while attending university evening classes. In 1912 he was one of those awarded the Pitt Cobbett Prize for Constitutional Law. He was a member of the Committee of the University Law Society from 1913/14 to 1915/16. In 1997 his son Malcolm established the CA Hardwick Prize for Proficiency in Constitutional Law at the University of Sydney in his memory. (1)
Hardwick was admitted to the New South Wales Bar on 2 June 1915. Classified as unfit for military duties during World War I, he assisted at the Red Cross Information Bureau at Sydney, established by Langer Meade Loftus Owen, KC. Organised, staffed and financed by members of the legal profession, the Bureau sought information about sick, wounded and missing soldiers, death and burial details for those killed in action, and made arrangements for food parcels for prisoners of war. The Sydney office operated from September 1915 to April 1919. Hardwick practised in common law, migration and crime, both in Sydney and on the Western Circuit. In 1932 he defended Francis de Groot who had disrupted the Sydney Harbour Bridge opening. Hardwick argued successfully for the release of de Groot who had been deemed insane by the police, although de Groot was later found guilty of offensive behaviour. Other well-known cases were Cofield v Waterloo Case Company Ltd, Bourke v Butterfield and Lewis, and Hocking v Bell. Hardwick retired from practice in 1966.(2)
Hardwick was made a King's Counsel on 23 August 1934. In 1939 he was an Acting Judge of the Supreme Court of New South Wales, in the Matrimonial Causes Jurisdiction, from 9 January to 31 May. (3)
Hardwick had an interest in politics. He was a member of the United Australia Party (UAP) from its foundation year in 1931. He unsuccessfully contested the UAP pre-selection in the North Shore state electorate of Gordon in 1937 and in 1940 was the UAP candidate for the Federal seat of Werriwa but was defeated. After the demise of the UAP following the 1943 election, he played a part in the establishment of the Liberal Party. (4)
Hardwick was active in the community. He was a foundation member of the council of the NSW Institute of Hospital Almoners and Treasurer from 1937 to 1963. He was a member of the executive of the Metropolitan Hospital Contribution Fund and vice-chairman 1938 to 1944. He was a Director of Prince Henry Hospital from 1936 to 1944. He was a Director of the Benevolent Society of New South Wales from 1947, vice-president from 1958 to 1961, president 1961 to 1973 and vice-patron from 1973. On 1 January 1971 he was made a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George 'for service to the community' in New South Wales. (5)
Hardwick died at Sydney on 6 March 1984, survived by his two sons. A third son predeceased him in 1977. His wife Maisie Jean nee Fell, whom he had married on 28 October 1922, died in 1971.
1. Who's Who in Australia, Melbourne, The Herald and Weekly Times Ltd, 1938, p.234; 1941, p.319; 1944, p.404; 1947, p.401; 1950, pp.320-21; 1955, p.348; 1959, p.356; 1962, p.378; 1965, p.380; 1968, p.392; 1971, p.437; 1974, p.471; 1977, p.487; 1980, p.388; 1983, p.384; Australian Law Journal, Vol.58, pp.305-6 (May 1984); Chris Rodney, 'A life in the law: remembering C A Roger Hardwick CMG QC', Sydney Law School Report, 2007, Vol.2, p.12, http://www.law.usyd.edu.au/alumni/slr/slr2007vol2.pdf (cited 17 March 2008); Legislative Assembly New South Wales, Public Service List [as at 30 June], Sydney, NSW Government Printer, 1903, p.97; 1910, p.63; 1911, p.63; 1912, p.65; 1913, p.70, 1914, p.68; University of Sydney Calendars, 1912, p.348; 1913, pp.314, 354; 1914, p.421, 516, 560; 1915, pp.411, 649; 1916, pp.571, 686, http://calendararchive.usyd.edu.au/index.php (cited 12 May 2008).
2. Barristers Admission Board; NRS 13665, Roll of Barristers, 1876-1926; Reel 2147, p. 20; Australian Law Journal, op.cit.; Chris Rodney, op.cit.
3. New South Wales Government Gazette, No.160, 24 August 1934, p.3142; No.1, 6 January 1939, p.3; No.22, 10 February 1939, p.642; No.68, 28 April 1939, p.2445.
4. Chris Rodney, op.cit.
5. Who's Who in Australia, op.cit., 1977, p.487; 1980, p.388; 1983, p.384; It's an honour website http://www.itsanhonour.gov.au (cited 23 January 2008; The London Gazette, Supplement 45262, 1 January 1971, p.4.
6. Chris Rodley, op.cit.; Who's Who in Australia, op.cit.
(Additional information supplied by his family on SR File PERS/191.)