Irene Longman

Irene Maud Longman (née Bayley) (24 April 1877 – 29 July 1964) was a politician in Queensland, Australia. She was the first woman to stand and be elected as a Member of the Queensland Legislative Assembly.[1]

Irene Longman
Irene Longman.jpg
Member of the Queensland Legislative Assembly
for Bulimba
In office
11 May 1929 – 11 June 1932
Preceded byAlbert Wright
Succeeded byWilliam Copley
Personal details
Irene Maud Bayley

(1877-04-24)24 April 1877
Franklin, Tasmania, Australia
Died29 July 1964(1964-07-29) (aged 87)
Brisbane, Australia
Political partyCountry and Progressive National Party
Spouse(s)Albert Heber Longman (m.1904 d.1954)
RelationsPercy Bayley (brother),
James Bayley (brother)
OccupationNewspaper proprietor

Early lifeEdit

Irene Bailey was born in Franklin, Tasmania, and educated in Sydney. She trained as a kindergarten teacher and taught at Sydney Girls' Grammar School and Rockhampton Girls' Grammar School. In 1904, she married Heber Longman and the couple chose to live in Queensland. She served as president of the National Council of Women of Queensland from 1920 to 1924.


Irene Longman's parliamentary career began in the 1929 election. Representing the Country and Progressive National Party, she was elected to the Queensland Legislative Assembly in the electorate of Bulimba, a safe ALP seat, which she held for one term. While in Parliament, she was responsible for the first appointment of a Queensland woman police officer, and spoke about the welfare of children. Being a woman, she was never allowed to use the parliamentary dining room and had to eat her meals on the verandah. As well, there were no female toilets in the parliament building. Longman lost her seat in the 1932 election and did not re-contest it.

Longman had two brothers who were also members of the Queensland Parliament: Percy Bayley represented Pittsworth from 1915 to 1920, and James Bayley was the member for Wynnum from 1933 to 1935.[2]

The federal electorate of Longman, created in 1996, is named after Irene,[3] as is Longman Street in the Canberra suburb of Chisholm.[4]

Later lifeEdit

Irene Longman died on 29 July 1964 in St. Andrew's Hospital in Brisbane and was privately cremated.[5]


  1. ^ "MRS. IRENE LONGMAN". Queensland Times. LXIX (13, 455). Queensland, Australia. 13 May 1929. p. 8 (DAILY.). Retrieved 20 January 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  2. ^ O'Keeffe, Mary. "Longman, Irene Maud (1877–1964)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Australian National University. Retrieved 4 January 2019.
  3. ^ "Profile of the electoral division of Longman (Qld". Australian Electoral Commission. Australian Government. 26 September 2013. Archived from the original on 19 June 2016. Retrieved 16 June 2016.
  4. ^ "Schedule 'B' National Memorials Ordinance 1928–1972 Street Nomenclature List of Additional Names with Reference to Origin". Commonwealth Of Australia Gazette. Special. Australia, Australia. 8 February 1978. p. 13. Retrieved 2 May 2020 – via Trove.
  5. ^ "First Woman Elected to the Queensland Parliament" (PDF). Queensland Parliament. Archived (PDF) from the original on 31 March 2015. Retrieved 5 February 2015.

Further readingEdit

External linksEdit

Parliament of Queensland
Preceded by
Albert Wright
Member for Bulimba
Succeeded by
William Copley