On the Passing of Greg Hirst

It is with a heavy heart and deep sorrow we remember Greg’s unexpected death on Tuesday, 6 June 2017, following complications from surgery. He was surrounded by his wife Colleen and his children, Joel, Sarah, Jemma, Naomi and Nathan.

He was very much beloved by all who knew him – his legacy will live on forever. We miss him greatly.

[img] Greg Hirst tribute

Greg Hirst (Hirsty)
2/12/1952 – 6/6/2017

Greg was a husband, a father, a motorcyclist, and a man of God. His love for his family and his dedication and love for the motorcycling community were driven by his unwavering belief in a God who sees value and worth in every human being.

He was happily married to Colleen for 37 years. They had 6 children (one now deceased).

He was a founding member of Brotherhood Christian Motorcycle Club (CMC) and rode with them for 40 years. Greg has pastored a house church in the Parramatta area for over 35 years, with today’s Street Level Christian Community born out of Brotherhood CMC in 1981.

In 2003 he opened Street Level’s ‘Caring and Ministry Centre’ on Pitt St Parramatta, which has also been his family home. He provided the core for this place of contact and drop in – for the church and for those on the edges of society.

During the early 1980’s he assisted with Christian Scripture for high schools in Parramatta, under the auspices of St. John’s Anglican Church.

In Greg’s motorcycling ministry, he was a founding member of the Christian Motorcyclists Association of Australia and the force behind the Australian Conferences of Christian Motorcycling Clubs.

He organised the Silverwater Motor Festival, which hosted Brotherhood’s annual Street and Custom Motorcycle Show for 23 years. He also established the Bathurst Bike Show, which has run for 7 years.

He was an avid journalist, writing columns for several newspapers and magazines. He also wrote 2 books – My Motorcycling Life (Parts I & II) and hosted a community radio program on motorcycling.

In 2008 he began working on his television series, Temporary Australians, now in its 5th series.

Greg has worked with the homelessness community for 40 years. He established Parramatta Street Youth Project, and was most recently supporting the street work of Parramatta Mission. He has been involved in organising Homeless Person’s Week events in Parramatta for many years, linking the Blanket Run by Bikers Australia. Greg has organised rock concerts to raise money for the homeless with support from bands such as Midnight Oil.

He was a political activist and lobbyist, who worked tirelessly to secure better and safer conditions for bikers – a Labor Party member with political aspirations. He was also an active member of the NSW Motorcycle Council and Bikers Australia.

He was a key figure in organising annual politicians’ rides in Canberra and Sydney as well as numerous Australia-wide protest and celebration rides. He also presented at several international conferences on bikers’ rights.

He was a Christian biker who was equally at ease with politicians, media personalities, the rich and famous and the homeless. He would visit gaols and churches. He conducted weddings and funerals, including for his own children.

Above all, Greg was a genuine and honest man who made time for every one he met. He tried to live in a way that honoured Christ, without imposing his beliefs and morals on anyone.