Off the busy Hume Highway about 20km west of Sydney’s CBD, Birrong today is a densely-populated, multicultural place - fairly typical of Sydney’s cosmopolitan western suburbs. Basking in a name the local Aboriginals used to identify a star, Birrong's pattern of development has been typical of a Bankstown suburb.
It remained a semi-rural district from the time Joseph Hyde Potts was granted a farming holding in the area in 1835 until 1928 when the arrival of the railway sparked a mini land boom.
The most significant surge in population came with the post-World War II migrant influx which has made the Bankstown population one of the most dense and ethnically rich in Australia.
Birrong hosts a couple of Sydney’s biggest drinking water reservoirs, storing water piped from the Warragamba Dam - out in the foothills of the Blue Mountains - through the huge Prospect Reservoir. Close by Birrong is the historic Rookwood Cemetery, where more than one million people have been buried.