Villawood, is 25 kilometres west of the Sydney central business district. Villawood is home to Villawood Immigration Detention Centre, a detention facility used in the processing of asylum seekers and illegal immigrants.
The Aboriginal tribe of Gandangara once lived in the area. European settlement began in the early 1840s. During the 1860s, Villawood was used as pastoral land, but it was overrun with wild dogs. Woodville Road, which runs through Villawood, was once named Dog Trap Road because many farmers set dog traps for these wild dogs. A train station opened in 1922 to service the area was originally known as Woodville Road. Unfortunately, there was confusion with another place called Woodville in the Hunter Valley and thus the name was transposed into 'Villawood'.
There are also day and community centres, two schools, and several Christian churches. Recently, new buildings have been built for the Sacred Heart Primary School. a Mosque conducts Islamic services in the old post office building on Woodville rd at the shopping centre.
Villawood Place was once a major shopping centre, serving the surrounding areas. After nearby Bass Hill Plaza opened, many Villawood businesses went into decline, leaving a legacy of abandoned shop fronts and buildings, including the abandoned Franklins supermarket and Australia Post office. There has been rejuvenation and renovation of Woodville (Villawood) Place since with construction of the new Aldi supermarket, a bakery, chemists, grocers and other shops. It is located in proximity to Villawood railway station. A business park in Villawood holds enterprises concerning hardware products, furniture, auto parts and second-hand goods.
Vilawood now houses a variety of youth recreational and entertainment venues including AMF Bowling, Wiggles World, M9 Laser Skirmish, Sydney Indoor Climbing Gym, and Kartatak go-karting, and further recreational and food attractions are planned. These are all part of a complex called The Woods Action Centre, which is located on the northern side of the railway line, directly across the road from the station on the Villawood station exit which is opposite the shopping centre. And for fast food, Villawood has KFC, McDonald's, Domino's, and Hungry Jack's.
Apart from the Woods Action centre which includes Indoor Climbing, Ten-pin bowling, Go-karting and the Wiggles indoor play centre, Villawood is home to three other major sport and recreation areas: The Wran Leisure Centre, Thurina Park and Villawood Skatepark.
The Wran Leisure Centre (named after Neville Wran) houses a swimming pool, tennis courts, a gymnasium and squash courts. Thurina Park houses two multi purpose sporting fields that cater for soccer, cricket and baseball. Thurina Park is also home to the Villawood United Soccer Club.