The History of Wright

Phillip Arundell Wright, Australian pastoralist and philanthropist was the second Chancellor of the University of New England from 1960-1970.

Wright College, named in honour of P.A Wright, began in 1956 and consisted of distinct two-storey weatherboard blocks, giving the college a unique presence within the residential system. Each block developed its own identity which encouraged a strong sense of pastoral care, as well as a spirited inter block rivalry. Whether a student’s talents were academic, sporting, organising, being musical or theatrical, looking out for others, or just being a good citizen, there was a valued place for them at Wright College.

The original Wright College was closed and later demolished in the 1990’s, with the name being transferred to the Claude Street Flats. The Claude Street Flats were commissioned in 1975 and consisted of 32 flats clustered in blocks of either 6 or 8 bedroom. The 4 bedroom flat were later added to expand the housing. In 1989, the Claude Street Flats were renamed as Wright Village.

In 2013, construction began on the ‘new’ Wright College on the original site of the ‘old’ Wright College. The Wright College Alumni approached the Council for naming rights and a new era began, with the inclusion of Wright Village to form the amalgamated Wright College & Village. The building complex was finished in late 2014 and the official Grand Opening was held on the 30th April 2015.

Today, more than 500 students reside within Wright College & Village. With support from the Alumni, some of the old traditions have returned. A strong sense of pastoral care and respect for individual talents have a remained a constant.

Wright is proud to be, now and always, first in New England.


The College crest contains the coat of arms of the family with which the Australian Wright family is connected to. The martlet is a heraldic bird which appears on the coat.


Our motto is “Let your light shine through”, a translated form of the ancient Greek phrase διαλάμπει τὸ καλόν. This was selected in 1960 from Aristotle’s Nichomachean Ethics as he discussed the idea of how men should best live. It relates to how, even though external advantages such as wealth and high social standing can lead to a happier life, even in adversity “a noble character shines through”.

Wright Village History

The 'Claude Street Flats' commenced operations in 1975 as 32 flats, clustered in blocks of 4 configured with either 6 or 8 bedrooms. By 1985, the 4 bedroom flats were added to address the village's growing popularity and expanding number of residents.concept drawing of Wright Village with annotation saying view from Claude Street

Phillip Arundell Wright, Australian pastoralist and philanthropist, was the second Chancellor of the University of New England from 1960 until 1970. Wright was one of the leading figures in the establishment of the New England University College in 1938, and a great philanthropist to the university, donating property, resources, prizes and a mace over the years of his association with the institution. In his honour, the Claude Street Flats were renamed as Wright Village in 1989.

An image of the original Wright College blocks, taken in the 1960s before they were demolished in 1990.