Wednesday 24 July 2013

The Queensland House...

...A Roof Over Our Heads

I was sitting in the Townsville Library in the CBD the other day in my favourite study spot, and they recently rearranged the entire library space so that by coincidence or chance (or deliberate sabotage), they placed all the cool books on architecture and landscape design right in my peripheral vision; see what I mean...

Anyway, one of the books that jumped out at me (on a scheduled study break of course) is about the history and heritage of Queenslander Houses, aptly titled "The Queensland House: A Roof Over Our Heads" published by the Queensland Museum and edited by Rod Fisher and Brian Crozier.

The book covers what is unique about Queenslander Houses through a selection of chapters: Lifestyle, House Management, Identity, Design Plates, Furniture, Decoration, Gardens and Restoration. It also reminded me of the Heritage Information Kit I picked up 10 years ago when we first lived in Townsville, called (again quite aptly) The Townsville House", which I subsequently dug out of my house files when I got home. It includes a number of pamphlets covering The History of Your House, Conserving the Townsville House, Townsville Fences, Townsville Gardens, Townsville Verandahs and Alterations to Your House. (You can download a electronic copy of the Townsville House information pack if you are interested in reading it).

So apologies for the photos in advance (same ol' same ol') but here's some snapshots from the book...

The Book Cover

Design Plates
Moving your house down the Brisbane River, as you do in 1934...
By the way for our American friends this still happens over here - not necessarily on the river but Queenslander Houses still get relocated on the back of trucks and moved to new blocks or subdivisions. We have another Queenslander in Townsville and it came all the way from Charters Towers, which is about 1.5 hrs drive away! Here's an example from Atlas House Removers...)
 But I digress, back to the book !!
Nothing better than reading the Financial Review on a Saturday morning
 on the verandah, as I'm sure they did back in 1871 !!
A classic workers cottage in Petrie Terrace...
Which instantly made me think of the West End Cottage - can't wait to see Caroline's finished renovation - check out the progress here.
Or if you want to see the transformation of a Queenslander already well on the way to being brought back to life, check out funandvjs (including Jason's never ending painting quest - a sort of 'Neverendingstory' involving a paint brush ;-)

 Queenslander Houses, yes they are a labour of love - but you've also got to love how these little homes endure so many years as they get passed from owner to owner over the decades. I wonder if there will be a similar book on 'McMansions' sitting in the library in 100 years time...
Cheers, Col


  1. Hi Col, (and thanks for the plug!) There is a wealth of information out there, and it can become a bit of an addiction for hard-core renovators. We are currently living in a new/modern apartment and I can honestly say that I can't wait to be living back in a house that has a bit of history and character. xx

  2. No worries Caroline. Enjoy the apartment, though it can never compete with a house. And remember "It's not a house it's a home" (Daryl Kerrigan - The Castle ;-)

    Cheers, Col

  3. Good book and great for research! And thanks for the shout-out too...bit quiet on the renovating front at the moment but we have a few projects coming up. xx

  4. It can be quite nice when it is quiet on the renovating front - nice to have a 'normal' weekend occasionally ! lol

    Cheers, Col

  5. This blog deals with the Queensland houses for those who want an improved standard of living. You have made this topic easy and interesting to read and understand. Thanks for sharing such a good post.

    1. Glad you enjoyed it and stay tuned for more posts from the land of Sunshine and Paint Pots!

      Regards, Col