Wolston House

Summary

Wolston House, built in 1852, is the oldest surviving residential farmhouse in Brisbane.

Date Built / Opened / Sanctified

1852

Address

223 Grindle Road, Wacol, QLD, Australia

Type of Place

Building

Landscape

Opening Hours

1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Sunday of the month: 11am to 4pm. Admission fees apply.

Story

Wolston House is situated on the banks of the Brisbane river halfway between Brisbane and Ipswich. Dr. Stephen Simpson, Moreton Bay's first Crown Commissioner of Lands, bought this desirable site in 1851 when land close to the settlement of Brisbane was opened to free settlers. He established a horse and cattle station on 640 acres (257 hectares).

In 1852 Dr. Simpson built his farmhouse, one day's travel upstream from the Moreton Bay settlement of (then) New South Wales. There have been five owners of Wolston and each has either built or adapted the house and grounds to suit his family's needs. Dr. Simpson built a small brick house together with the station out-buildings. Matthew Goggs added sandstone enclosed rooms and, later, a cedar timber annex with six rooms for his growing family. Both early owners were pastoralists and bred horses and cattle. The Grindles maintained the house and made improvements to both it and its surroundings. That family continued to raise horses early in the 20th century, but also kept sheep and prize-winning cattle. The Hurley family concentrated on developing the property as a diary and became pioneers of pasture improvement. As the last and current owner, the National Trust repaired and weatherproofed the house as part of its restoration program.

Today, Wolston is a house museum, furnished in a way that creates a feeling for and an understanding of the past. Its greatest significance lies in the opportunity it offers to show how Wolston's people lived and worked and how they integrated with and served the community during the past 150 years.

Wolston House is opened the first, second, third and fourth Sunday of the month and an enthusiastic group of volunteers is available to answer all your questions. Authentic Devonshire teas are served in the shade of the 160-year old fig tree in the grounds. From the veranda, you can still see cattle grazing peacefully in the fields. For a taste of Victorian elegance, book in for the high teas on the second Sunday of each month. Email to wolston@nationaltrustqld.org or call 07 3223 6666.

Is this place open to the public?

Yes

Contact Details

Contact Email for This Place

wolston@nationaltrustqld.org

References

Ian Sharp, The Wolston Story. National Trust of Queensland, 1998. ISBN: 0-908009-21-6

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Author

Person

National Trust of Queensland

Last updated: 24/04/2013

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