Roma Street Railway Station | Environment, land and water | Queensland Government

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Roma Street Railway Station

  • 601208
  • 15 Countess Street, Brisbane City

General

Also known as
Brisbane Terminus; Brisbane Terminal Station; Brisbane Passenger Station
Classification
State Heritage
Register status
Entered
Date entered
24 March 2000
Type
Transport—rail: Railway station
Themes
3.12 Developing secondary and tertiary industries: Catering for tourists
5.3 Moving goods, people and information: Using rail
6.3 Building settlements, towns, cities and dwellings: Developing urban services and amenities
Architect
Stanley, Francis Drummond Greville
Builder
Petrie, John
Construction period
1873–1940, Roma Street Railway Station (1873 - 1940s circa)
Historical period
1870s–1890s Late 19th century
Style
Classicism

Location

Address
15 Countess Street, Brisbane City
LGA
Brisbane City Council
Coordinates
-27.46559469, 153.01914692

Map

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Significance

Criterion AThe place is important in demonstrating the evolution or pattern of Queensland’s history.

Roma Street Railway Station, opened in 1875 as the Brisbane Terminal Station, is important in demonstrating the development of Queensland railways. Built as an extension to the Southern and Western railway, at the terminus of Brisbane’s first railway line, it is one of the earliest surviving station buildings in Queensland, and reflects the extension of the Queensland railway network in the 1870s.

The station, which includes the two-storey passenger and administration building, northern platform and southern platform with awning (1939, associated with the Country Station), provides physical evidence of the social and economic importance of rail as a passenger and goods transport link throughout Queensland, as well as suburban commuter and recreational traffic. Its extensive original and early fabric demonstrate its role as a major city passenger station (1873-1940), goods station (1873-1991), and railway administration offices (1873-1974).

As the oldest surviving railway station in Brisbane, and one of the oldest surviving in Queensland, the station has a degree of rarity. The building is one of Queensland’s few grand masonry 19th century railway stations, including Toowoomba (1874; QHR 600872), South Brisbane (1891; QHR 600307), and Central (1899; QHR 600073).

Criterion DThe place is important in demonstrating the principal characteristics of a particular class of cultural places.

Roma Street Railway Station is an excellent, highly intact example of a major 19th century Queensland railway station. Designed to accommodate ground floor station facilities and first floor offices, the building in its form, layout and fabric, provides legible evidence of this former use. It is important in demonstrating the principal characteristics of its type, including: elongated, symmetrical two-storey form fronting a platform to the rear; well-composed principal elevation incorporating classically-influenced stylistic features; prominent centred entrance; booking offices, waiting rooms and associated facilities; and hierarchical layering of spaces and finishes, which distinguish public and non-public areas, passenger class divisions, and roles within railway operations. It demonstrates the use of stylistic features of the era, which determined its roof form, joinery and decorative treatment, as well as climatic adaptations to enhance passenger comfort and provide abundant natural light and ventilation for offices.

The original booking office with ticket window divisions for different classes of passengers is a unique example of its type in Queensland.

The station building is a substantial, early example of the public work of prolific and prominent Queensland Colonial Architect, FDG Stanley, illustrating his skilful deployment of eclectic styles, consideration of climate, and use of materials, to achieve both elegance and economy.

Criterion EThe place is important because of its aesthetic significance.

Roma Street Railway Station is important for the beautiful attributes of its composition and fine architectural quality. The symmetrical front (south) façade is a well-proportioned composition of formal and decorative elements including an arcade and centred projecting carriage porch, which create an impressive entrance sequence. The skilled design approach and workmanship is further evidenced by the decorative stone mouldings that contrast with the tuck-pointed red face brick and articulate the classical and gothic-influenced detailing. The interior retains extensive original and early fabric, including lath and plaster walls and ceilings, timber joinery, an ornate cast-iron staircase and evidence of early decorative treatments.

Designed to address Roma Street to the south, the substantial station building has landmark qualities. Its elegant composition, incorporating classical and gothic-influenced stylistic elements well-executed in high quality materials, expresses the optimism and importance associated with the establishment of the first railway terminal in Queensland’s capital.

The distinctive 19th century station building can be appreciated from a range of viewing points spanning an east-north-west arc. Views can be obtained from Wickham Park and Albert Street, Countess Street and Roma Street Parklands.

Criterion GThe place has a strong or special association with a particular community or cultural group for social, cultural or spiritual reasons.

Roma Street Railway Station has a special association with generations of railway passengers as the Brisbane terminal station (1873-1889) and major Brisbane city station (1889-1940). The station has played a part in the cultural and social life of Brisbane people as a city and suburban railway station. The station was the departure and arrival point for recreational venues, commuter transport, and as the site of public displays and entertainments. It has been a significant greeting point for notable figures visiting Brisbane and Queensland, and a mobilisation point for soldiers on war service. It was also the terminus of the inter-colonial/interstate Sydney Mail Train from 1888 until 1931.

The station building also has a special association with the Queensland Railway Department (later Queensland Railways, later Queensland Rail), its staff and railway workers, as offices built and used for administrative, management, design and traffic operations from 1873 until the late 20th century.

History

The Roma Street Railway Station was opened in 1875 as the first Brisbane Terminal Station for use on the Brisbane end of the Southern and Western Railway Line from Ipswich. The two-storey station building was designed by Francis Drummond Greville (FDG) Stanley, the Colonial Architect and Superintendent of Public Buildings, in 1873 and built over the next two years by Brisbane builder, John Petrie. The station operated as the Brisbane terminal station until 1889, as a major passenger and administration station until 1940, and Brisbane’s primary railway goods facility until 1991. It served as offices for the Queensland Railway Department (later Queensland Railways, later Queensland Rail) staff for over 100 years, and is the one of the oldest surviving railway buildings in Queensland.

In the Australian colonies, governments fostered the development of railways as a means of developing the country and encouraging settlement. It was argued that rail would reduce freight costs and save travel time for passengers.[1] Queensland’s first railway survey was undertaken by the New South Wales Government in 1856,[2] and following separation,[3] Queensland Parliament passed the Railway Act in 1863, enabling railways to be constructed in the colony. The railway network developed along decentralised lines extending from ports to pastoral and mining centres. The first line, between Ipswich and Bigge's Camp, 34km west of Ipswich (later Grandchester, QHR600729), was opened in 1865. This was the first stage of the four-stage Southern and Western Railway project which linked Ipswich to Toowoomba in 1867, Warwick in 1871, and Dalby in 1878. New railways opened west from Rockhampton in 1867 (the Northern Line, later renamed the Central Railway), west from Townsville in 1880 (the Great Northern Line), Cairns in 1887, and south from Normanton in 1891.

The Southern and Western Railway served the pastoralists and industrialists of Ipswich and the Darling Downs, and was primarily for goods, rather than passengers. With the railhead at Ipswich, a railway to Brisbane was not initially considered essential, as goods could be shipped from Ipswich to Brisbane’s port for export. However, the Bremer and upper Brisbane rivers could not cope with large shipping, and lobbying began for an extension to Brisbane. A preliminary survey of possible lines was completed in 1865,[4] but concerns over the extension’s financial viability put work on hold. A Royal Commission on Railway Construction was called in the 1870s, and recommended the extension: the business generated by it was likely to be profitable, and the colony’s economy, which had collapsed in the mid-1860s, had been bolstered by the Gympie gold rush and was better able to afford new infrastructure.[5]

The extension between Ipswich and Oxley was approved in August 1872,[6] and, the first sod on the extension was turned at Goodna in January 1873. From Oxley, two lines had been surveyed, terminating either at North or South Brisbane. After extensive debate, the route to North Brisbane, via a bridge at Oxley Point (Indooroopilly), was chosen as more cost-effective.[7] The terminus of this route, selected by Railway Department Chief Engineer HC Stanley, was located within the Grammar School reserve at the base of the ‘Green Hills’ (Petrie Terrace). The site was unused by the school and was large enough for a major passenger station and goods yard.[8]

The section between Oxley and Brisbane was approved in October 1873,[9] and the Government called for tenders for the construction of the railway terminus station in Brisbane.[10] FDG Stanley, the recently-appointed Colonial Architect and Superintendent of Buildings within the Public Works Department, was the designer of the building.[11] Stanley had commenced with the Public Works Department in 1863, serving as Superintendent of Buildings after Charles Tiffin vacated the Colonial Architect’s position. He was the official Colonial Architect from 1873-1883, when the colony, recovering from the economic collapse of the 1860s, began to invest in public buildings. Stanley’s designs, balancing classical styles and stylistic features with climate-appropriate adaptations and economic restraint, helped define public architecture in Queensland.[12] Extant examples of major works, designed while he was Colonial Architect, include the original State Library (1876-9, QHR600177); Toowoomba Court House (1876-8, QHR600848); Townsville Magistrates Court (1876-7, QHR600929); Townsville Gaol (now part of Townsville Central State School, 1877, QHR601162); Brisbane’s Port Office (1880, QHR600088); Toowoomba Hospital (surviving kitchen wing 1880, QHR601296); post offices at Gympie (1878-80, QHR600534), South Brisbane (1881, QHR600302) and Toowoomba (1880, QHR600847); as well as the Brisbane Supreme Court (no longer extant). As Superintendent of Buildings he designed the Toowoomba Railway Station (1874, QHR600872), Government Printing Office (1873, QHR600114) and Lady Elliott Island Lighthouse (1872-3).

The Brisbane Courier provided a detailed description of the proposed Terminus Passenger Station in October 1873:

The general style of the building will be that known as the Italian Gothic order of architecture. The material used...will be pressed brick with cut stone facings, this being chosen on account of its durability and as also affording the greatest consonant with economy. The station will consist of a main building, two storeys high, flanked at each end by a single storey wing.[13]

The building was designed to house both a passenger station and railway administrative offices. Passengers would access the station from Roma Street via a carriageway, disembarking at the station’s central carriage porch. The porch fronted a 10ft (3m) wide arcade running the length of the main building. From the arcade, passengers would enter either the first-class booking office on the east or the second-class booking office on the west, both served by a semi-circular ticket office on the rear (northern) wall. Female passengers travelling on second-class tickets could wait in a small room located along a western passage, while separate waiting rooms for first-class male and female passengers were east of the first-class booking office. Doorways in the rear wall of the booking offices and waiting rooms led directly onto the 190-foot (58m) long departure platform. Arriving passengers exited the station via a second platform across the rail line.[14] Luggage was loaded onto trains via the luggage passage, on the eastern end of the building. The guards and porters room, staff facilities, a lamp room and stairs to the upper floor were situated in the eastern wing. The western side of the building held public services, including the telegraph office, station master’s office, and parcel and book office, accessible via a public lobby at the end of the arcade. A private staircase to the traffic managers’ office, a staircase to the traffic department, and toilet facilities were located in the western wing. An office or book stall space, in the northwestern side of the building, was accessible from the platform.[15]

Upstairs, the offices of the traffic department, clerks, accountant, draughtsmen, Railways Engineer, Resident Engineer and contractors were accessed from a central passageway which ran almost the length of the building; with a small S-bend in the western end. An arch in the centre of the corridor marked the separation of the traffic department from the Chief Engineer’s office. Both wings hosted staircases.[16]

The building included adaptations for the climate. The arcade sheltered the ground floor rooms from the sun, while skylights in the ceiling and a ventilated lantern provided light and ventilation to the upper floor. All public rooms and most of the offices were fitted with fireplaces. A platform shade, installed on the northern wall of the building over the platform, sheltered passengers from the weather, and was composed of material from an iron station building imported from England for use at Toowoomba.[17] It was supported by brick buttresses at both ends of the building (extant) and on the arrivals platform (no longer extant).[18]

Commensurate with Stanley’s design approach, materials used for the station reflected elegance but economy. Apart from the recycled iron roof trusses and columns, the building was constructed of machine-pressed bricks made from locally-sourced clay, more affordable than stone, and praised as ‘cleaner, sharper [and] finer’[19] than Brisbane bricks used in earlier buildings.[20] Freestone for the building dressings and columns was sourced from Murphy’s Creek.[21]

Construction work took place over two years, after contractor John Petrie’s tender of £11,845 was accepted in December 1873.[22] Progress was slow, with the stonework foundations underway in June 1874,[23] and the building only ten foot above the ground by September.[24] The line from Ipswich to Brisbane was opened without ceremony on 14 June 1875. The platform at Brisbane Terminus Passenger Station was half-paved, the rooms and corridors incomplete, the roofing over the platform in progress and there was no permanent lighting. Nonetheless, an interested crowd gathered to watch the first outbound services leave the station.[25] The building was sufficiently complete by August 1875 for the Brisbane Courier to describe it as ‘in all respects convenient, handsome, and well-designed’.[26] The station’s arcade was later highlighted as one of Brisbane’s valued architectural features.[27]

The Brisbane to Ipswich route quickly became the busiest section of line in Queensland.[28] Merchandise and imported goods from the ports were despatched along the line, while produce from the Darling Downs and surrounds – including coal, flour, wool, hay, maize, livestock, vegetable and dairy produce – was brought to Brisbane.[29] A central goods handling facility was opened at the Terminal Station, including a large (64m long) goods shed[30] and two sidings, erected in 1875-6 (no longer extant), while railway produce markets opened outside the station, along George and Roma streets. A maintenance yard also operated at Roma Street, including locomotive and carriage sheds. By 1882 the Terminal Station platforms had been extended to cope with the traffic and trade.[31] Traffic reduced slightly after some export goods were diverted to South Brisbane in 1884,[32] but expanded again.[33] Cattle yards, produce sheds, carriage sheds, gas works, goods sheds, coal stages, cold stores, additional locomotive sheds and siding extensions were all added to Roma Street’s goods yard. None of these structures survive in 2020.[34]

Passengers also used the line. Residential occupation of Toowong and Indooroopilly boomed as middle-class city workers took advantage of the four daily train services. In 1882 rail lines were opened from the Terminal Station to Sandgate and the Racecourse, taking day-trippers to the seaside and races, and bringing northern suburbs passengers into Brisbane.[35] In January 1888, the first through-service to Sydney departed from the Terminal Station. However, travellers criticised the lack of direct access from the Terminal Station to the central business district, and in 1889, the Brisbane Central Railway Station was opened. Central Railway Station (QHR 600073) – located closer to the General Post Office and city office buildings – became Brisbane’s main passenger station, and the original Terminal Station was renamed Roma Street Railway Station.[36]

Despite its diminished status, Roma Street remained a major centre for passengers and travellers. Through the 19th and early 20th centuries, guards of honour lined Roma Street to greet and farewell significant visitors and figures, including premiers Morehead and Griffith,[37] governors Norman and Lamington;[38] Governor-General Munro-Ferguson;[39] the late politician JM Macrossan, who had died in Sydney;[40] singer Nellie Melba;[41] Lord Kitchener;[42] and Salvation Army General Booth.[43] Roma Street continued to operate as the Sydney Mail terminus until 1931, when the service shifted to South Brisbane.[44] Crowds thronged to Roma Street Station as soldiers departed for the South African War[45] and World War I.[46] Travelling circuses performed in the Roma Street yards,[47] and an historic parade in 1936 included a ‘Puffing Billy’ locomotive,[48] which was displayed at the yards until 1959. Roma Street also continued as the city’s primary goods terminus.[49]

The station building played an important role as office accommodation for Queensland railway staff. Internal rearrangements were made to the building to accommodate growing staff numbers, and improve their working conditions. It was one of the first buildings in Queensland to feature electric light, installed in 1884.[50] The Chief Engineer vacated the building in 1901 and was replaced by the general traffic manager’s department, with a telephonic system of communication installed the same year.[51] Bunker, lumber and message rooms were added to the wings by 1907; a traffic collector’s office and new strongroom were installed in 1911;[52] and parcels, printing offices and machine rooms replaced the first-class waiting rooms, guards’ room and lamp room by 1920.[53] In 1915, an additional storey was constructed atop the central carriage porch, providing more accommodation for the Traffic Branch on the first floor.[54] A traffic control system, coordinating trains between Brisbane and Gympie, was installed and operated from the additional storey in 1927.[55]

Queensland’s railway network extended dramatically in the 20th century. The North Coast line connected Brisbane to Gladstone in 1898, Rockhampton in 1904, and Cairns in 1924, providing a direct rail link between Brisbane and Mackay, Townsville, Winton, Forsayth, Cloncurry and Blackall. Southern and western trains reached Dirranbandi, Surat, Cunnamulla and Quilpie.[56] Central Station initially hosted ‘country’ services, but it lacked room for expansion, and Roma Street’s larger site was earmarked for a new country station. Roma Street’s locomotive, carriage and marshalling yard facilities were transferred to the Mayne Rail Yards between 1911 and 1927,[57] and work began on the new station.[58] A 350ft (106m) reinforced concrete, tiled passenger subway was constructed from Roma Street to the platforms in 1936-7, replacing an overhead walkway.[59] A new steel awning was installed above the southern platform (Platform 3 in 2020), in approximately 1939.[60] It was used in conjunction with two platforms at the new country station (no longer extant) for country and other passenger services.[61]

On 30 November 1940 the Country Station was opened at Roma Street Station. This low-lying face brick building and its additional platform sat directly between the 1873-5 building and Roma Street. The new passenger station relieved congestion at Brisbane Central Station and made Roma Street the chief station for long distance travel north. The original station was refurbished, its roof re-clad with corrugated fibrous sheeting; and its brick walls painted red and lined in cream to match the new station building. The southwest pediment was removed and replaced by a new storey on the western end of the building.[62] A covered area was added east of the building where the subway stairs emerged.[63] The original station building was turned over to the General Manager, with offices for clerks, traffic-, livestock-, coach- and wagon staff, maintenance and locomotive staff, telephone and telegraph exchanges, and the train control section.[64]

Further plans to upgrade and alter the building were postponed by World War II, during which time troop trains departed from Roma Street,[65] and the pedestrian subway served as an air-raid shelter.[66] In 1945, plans were drawn to alter doors, windows and stairs in the wings, and partitions on the first floor.[67] A second storey was added over the west wing in 1953 (later removed),[68] and the General Manager’s staircase was repositioned in 1961.[69] Externally, the iron carriage shed platform shade over the northern platform was removed in 1959.[70]

Extensive change was undertaken at Roma Street around the original station building in the late 20th century. The southern and northern Brisbane railway systems were directly connected in the 1970s, with the opening of the Merivale Bridge in 1978. In 1985, the country railway station (1940 building) was demolished and replaced by a multi-storey centre incorporating new railway and bus facilities, a hotel, offices and function centre. The original station building was left intact, and two new interstate platforms with standard gauge rails were built on its southern side.[71] The pedestrian subway was refurbished in 1986, with a broom finish concrete and expansion joints, and grated drains were laid on the floor, and a ceramic tile finish on the wall faces to match the subway tiles at Central Station.[72] Roma Street’s rail freight facility was moved to Acacia Ridge in 1991.[73] During the mid-1990s the platforms north and south of the early station building were re-arranged and extended. A bricked waiting area and new roof were added east of the station.[74] Underground, a new concourse was constructed to replace the pedestrian subway, and a 19m section of the original subway converted to a storage room.[75]

The station building remained the General Manager’s Office until 1974.[76] The station master, staff workers and archive storage occupied the building in the 1990s.[77] By 1993, Roma Street was acknowledged as the oldest surviving railway station building in an Australian capital city, and one of the oldest surviving railway buildings in Queensland.[78] A new office fitout was installed on the ground floor for Queensland Rail and the Queensland Police Rail Squad in 1999.[79] Stabilisation, waterproofing and reconstruction works commenced in 2012, including restoration of the brick, plaster, lead flashings, window joinery and stone works.[80] Replacement bricks were custom made in England; Welsh slate was imported from the UK; replacement stone came from Helidon; and rolled lead from England was installed. In 2015, a new steel beams and suspension system was installed between the two storeys, to lift a 65mm bow in the timber floor beams fit amongst the existing timber structures.[81] The second storey of the west wing was removed and the roofline reconstructed to its original configuration.[82] The restoration received an Australian Institute of Architects Queensland award in 2015.[83]

In 2020 the building is vacant, pending further repairs.

Description

Roma Street Railway Station occupies a 0.55ha site within the extensive Roma Street Station transit complex, located on the western side of the Brisbane central business district. The substantial masonry station building (1875) is set back from and faces Roma Street (although partially obscured by later development), and has a prominent centred entrance to the front (south) and a platform along the rear (north).  A later platform and awning to the south is associated with the former Country Station development (1939/40).

Features of Roma Street Railway Station of state-level cultural heritage significance are:

  • Station building (1875)
  • Platform (1875)
  • Country Station platform and awning (1939)
  • Views

The state-level periods of significance of the place are layered and relate to its origins and use as a passenger station (1875-1940) and railway design, traffic and management offices (1875-1974), and the establishment of the former Country Station (1939/40).

A large iron-roofed shelter (c1980) to the east of the station, small buildings to the west, and a lift, stairs and escalators accessing the modern subway below, are not of state-level cultural heritage significance.

Station building (1875)

Designed in a Victorian-era style, the station building features classically-influenced design elements based around symmetrical massing and floor plan geometry. The long, narrow building is constructed of face brick with a stone plinth, and comprises a central two-storey three-bay core flanked by single-storey wings at the east and west ends. The well-composed front (south) elevation has a prominent centred entrance bay with a projecting two-storey porte cochere (carriage porch, upper storey added 1915) and a ground floor arcade running the length of the core.

The slate-clad roof is hipped over the range, with separate hips over the wings and carriage porch. Tall masonry chimneys punctuate the roofline. A ventilated lantern, clerestories and skylights provide natural light and ventilation to the first floor interior. Pedimented dormer windows fronting the wings strengthen the building’s symmetry.

Decorative stone mouldings contrast with the red face brick and articulate the extensive classically-influenced elements and ornamentation. Windows openings (front and side elevations) have face brick round arch heads with stone hoods, and are separated by pilasters with stone capitals. The ground floor window hoods and arcade openings are differentiated from the first floor fenestration by their gothic-influenced depressed pointed arches.

Designed to support the former platform shade (removed 1959), the rear (north) elevation has a parapet and substantial buttresses at the east and west ends. Regularly spaced pilasters separate the paired first floor windows, and bring order to the irregularly-spaced ground floor windows and door openings.

The layout and design of the building interior reflects its original and continued uses – ground floor passenger station and first floor railway administration offices. Evidence remains of the functional and hierarchical layering of spaces, circulation patterns and finishes that distinguished former public and non-public areas, passenger class divisions, and evolving railway operations. Substantial masonry walls outlining the three-bay core extend through both levels and contain fireplaces in public areas and offices. Ground floor rooms are accessed via openings directly from the arcade or platform, or via internal passageways, depending on their former function. The end wings contain stairwells (two west, one east) accessing the first floor, each with separate external entrances.

The core ground floor layout comprises: (central bay) a large former booking hall, divided in two and with separate entrances for first (east) and second (west) class passengers, with a curve-walled ticket office centred on the northern wall, and an early strong room (1911) in the southwest corner; (east bay) former first class waiting rooms (originally separate ladies and gents rooms, combined c1920s for a parcels office), and a luggage passage at the eastern end of the arcade; (west bay) former Station Master’s office, second class waiting room and parcels office (1911 Traffic Collector’s office, west wall removed), arranged along an east-west passageway, and a former telegraph office also accessed via a lobby (openings altered and enclosed) at the western end of the arcade.

In addition to stairwells, the west wing also contains a former book stall office (c1920s Traffic Collector’s office), toilet facilities and access passages. The east wing layout was partly reconfigured in c1920s for a printing office but retains evidence of a former guards and porters room (openings in north wall altered), lamp room (south wall removed), and passage (divided to form gas meter rooms).

The first floor contains offices and associated rooms accessed via a central passageway that runs the length of the building, with an S-bend at the junction of the central and west core bays. A former messenger room and lumber rooms (by 1907) are located in the east wing. The rendered masonry bay walls are articulated by moulded archways where they traverse the passageway, and an elaborate central doorway separates the former Office of Engineer and Railways (east), and the Traffic Managers Department offices (west,). The offices are ventilated and well-lit by skylights and clerestories that supplement the natural lighting from the windows lining the building. Built-in office joinery, redundant communication systems and other services, along with wall-mounted ephemera, illustrate the former functions of the place.

Stabilisation and conservation works undertaken in recent years have included the restoration and reconstruction of some original and early features in accordance with Burra Charter principles and practice.

Features of the station building also of state-level cultural heritage significance are:

Exterior

  • Long, narrow symmetrically composed building with a prominent centred front entrance and a platform to the rear
  • Two-storey form with hipped roof, and separately hipped two-storey carriage porch and single-storey end wings
  • Timber-framed roof, clad in Welsh slate (west wing roof reconstructed)
  • Face brick chimneys with stone-dressed bases and arched caps, and lead flashings
  • Ventilated lantern running the length of the core roof ridge, with hipped roof, louvred sides, and two internal skylights over the first floor passageway
  • Skylights, including:
    • three rectangular glazed skylights on core roof – two centred on the northern side of the ridge ventilator (c1918), and one to the northwest possible former clerestory)
    • rectangular glazed skylights on each wing roof (east c1918, west reconstructed)
  • Clerestories, including:
    • skillion-roofed clerestory on north side of core roof (by c1890)
    • curve-roofed clerestory centred on southern side of core roof (c1954)
  • Metal ogee profile gutters with acroteria
  • Eaves lined with timber boards
  • Carriage porch, including: ground floor arcade with stone-dressed depressed pointed arches to south side, and wide segmental arches to east and west sides; stone-dressed rusticated corner columns and round intermediary columns, with ornate bases, capitals and mouldings; and upper storey (added c1915)
  • Arcade (divided into three bays, spanning southern side of core), including: stone-dressed depressed pointed arches, and round columns with ornate bases, capitals and mouldings (east and west bays); face brick depressed pointed arches, and square columns with stone-dressed bases and capitals (central bay); and vertical-jointed (VJ) timber-boarded ceilings
  • Dormer windows (east original, west reconstructed), including: gabled pediments with rendered mouldings, topped with finials;  face brick segmental arch head window openings, flanked by pilasters with rendered capitals and bases;  rendered window surrounds; and casement windows flanking horizontal pivots, with stop-chamfered mullions.
  • Buttresses, including: substantial rusticated columns, with ornate capitals at stringcourse and parapet levels; upper-storey features panels with evidence of fixtures from the former platform shade (removed 1959)
  • Face brick exterior walls with pale tuck-pointing
  • Stone-dressed elements and mouldings, including: cornices; consoles; stringcourses; imposts; column and pilaster capitals and bases; depressed pointed arch window hoods (ground floor); round arched window hoods (first floor); and sills
  • Stone plinth with moulded capping and rough-cut base (extends below current ground level and may include evidence of former steps fronting arcade)
  • Stone and brick foundations, and timber-framed subfloor
  • Original and early face brick window openings and timber joinery, including:
    • ground and first floor windows in south walls of core, carriage porch and end wings: round arch heads to openings; and two-light casement windows, with stop-chamfered transoms and mullions, and round arch fanlights
    • ground floor windows in east and west walls of wings: round arch heads to openings; and two-light casement windows above panelled spandrels
    • ground floor windows in north walls of ticket office, station master’s office and book stall: segmental arch heads to openings; and two- and four-light casement windows, with perforated metal mesh fanlights and stop-chamfered transoms
    • first floor windows in north wall of core: paired openings with segmental arch heads; and two-light double hung sash windows
  • Hierarchy of entrances and evidence of original and early circulation patterns to and from the building and railway platform
  • Original and early face brick door openings and timber joinery, including:
    • twin front entrance doors in south wall of core, accessing first and second class booking offices from arcade: segmental arch heads to openings; and pairs of painted, timber-boarded cavity sliding doors, with arched metal transom panel
    • French doors in south wall of core, accessing east bay (c1920s) from arcade: flat arch heads to openings; and pairs of panelled and part-glazed doors, with glazed four-pane transom light and fanlight over
    • wide door openings with French doors in north wall of core, accessing first and second class booking offices and waiting rooms from platform: segmental arch heads to openings; fanlights and sidelights (waiting rooms) with perforated metal mesh panels; stop-chamfered transom and mullions; pairs of doors, part-glazed with diagonal-boarded lower panels (first class waiting room doors replaced with timber boarded infill and windows; wide-leaf booking office doors replaced with timber boarded infills, windows and a modern door)
    • French doors in north wall of wings, accessing lamp room and book stall from platform: segmental arch heads to openings; fanlights with perforated metal mesh panels; stop-chamfered transom; pairs of doors, part-glazed with diagonal-boarded lower panels (metal grille fixed to exterior of book stall opening)
    • panelled doors in north wall of wings, accessing traffic manager’s stair and passage to former east toilets from platform: round arch heads to openings; stop-chamfered transoms with fanlights; pairs of panelled doors
    • boarded door in north wall of core, accessing luggage passage from platform: segmental arch head to opening; pair of diagonal-boarded doors, with external hooks
    • side entrance doors in east and west walls of wings, accessing stairwells (west door reconstructed): round arch heads to openings; and pairs of panelled, painted doors, with round arch fanlights
  • Original and early window and door hardware
  • Original and early platform seats

Interior – ground floor

  • Layered ground floor layout and fabric relating to original and evolving use as a passenger station (1875-1940)
  • Functional and hierarchical planning arrangement, comprising large divided central booking hall with first and second class passenger facilities and offices in the core, passageways for internal circulation, and service areas and stairwells in the wings
  • Internal spatial qualities of rooms, including original ceiling heights
  • Ceilings, including:
    • lathe and plaster ceiling with moulded cornices in first and second class booking offices
    • timber boarded ceilings in 1920s printing office (former lamp room and toilets)
    • lathe and plaster ceilings elsewhere (where extant)
  • Walls and partitions, including:
    • original and early tinted / coloured set plaster rendered masonry walls in public and office areas
    • part-height rendered masonry walls and concrete-lined interior to strong room (1911)
    • brick walls, rendered to dado height, in the toilet area, with high-level openings and mid-level bricked-in arches to the back of each cubicle in central passage walls, evidencing need to access and empty pans
    • brick walls in service areas, with simple rendered skirting
  • Stairwells, including:
    • Northwest stairwell: original cast iron staircase featuring decorative open arch tread design with moulded balustrade incorporating tulip motif and timber handrail; underside of staircase lined with beaded timber boards; evidence of original set plaster render and paint colour scheme with decorative dado design; and moulded timber skirtings
    • Southwest stairwell (staircase removed): use of location as circulation; evidence of coloured plaster on masonry walls, with original staircase configuration and redundant services boxes outlined on north wall; and timber floor
    • Southeast stairwell (staircase reconfigured c1961): use of location as circulation; c1961 timber staircase with metal balustrade and plastic handrail; lathe and plaster ceiling; evidence of coloured plaster on masonry walls; and timber floor
  • Fireplaces in passenger booking and waiting areas, and telegraph and station manager offices, including: rendered chimney breasts, outlines of removed mantles and surrounds, arched brick firebox recesses, and stone hearths; and timber mantle, surround and wall-mounted timber-framed mirror retained in the second class waiting room
  • Original and early timber joinery, including:
    • low-waisted, four-panel doors, some with fanlights
    • moulded timber architraves to door and window openings
    • openings demonstrating ticket office functions and hierarchy: second class (west) ticket window and doorway; centred c1920s ticket and telegrams window; and first class (east) ticket window frame (later door inserted)
    • timber cupboards containing shelves and pigeon holes, with lower panelled doors and boarded upper doors, flanking fireplace in station master’s office
    • timber shelves in strong room and gas meter room
    • remnant skirtings with moulded tops in passenger areas
  • Metal doors, including:
    • metal safe door with makers mark “CHUBB’S 128 QUEEN VICTORIA’S LONDON PATENT” to strong room (1911)
    • riveted metal door to gas meter room(c1920s)
  • Arched openings, including:
    • round headed arch with moulded architrave along west bay passageway
    • wide segmental headed archway in telegraph office
  • Evidence of redundant gas light fixtures, ventilation openings and grilles, and pipework, including in the northeast stairwell and gas meter room
  • Evidence of original and early decorative schemes
  • Flooring, including:
    • concrete slab floor with moulded plaster skirting in booking offices
    • concrete slab floor with simple rendered skirting in service areas and toilets
    • timber frame and floorboards elsewhere (where extant)

 Interior – first floor

  • Layered first floor layout and fabric relating to original and evolving use as railway offices (1875-1974)
  • Circulation pattern comprising a central passageway accessing offices and stairwells in the end wings
  • Internal spatial qualities of rooms, including generous office sizes, original ceiling heights, and natural light and ventilation
  • Skylights and clerestories, including:
    • large rectangular clerestory with exposed beams, lined with VJ boards, positioned over the offices on the northern side of the east bay
    • small rectangular clerestory (c1954) with exposed beams, lined with flat sheets, with wall-mounted fixture and ropes connected to operable windows, positioned over the office on the southern side of the central bay (c1954 Trains Room) 
    • timber-framed skylight ceiling openings, with moulded surrounds and timber-framed and glazed sashes, two positioned over the central passageway and three over the offices on the northern side of the central and west bays (one sash in-situ and others intact in the roof space)
    • timber and metal-framed skylights above passageway in wings
  • Ceilings, including:
    • lathe and plaster ceilings (where extant)
    • timber boarded ceiling in room over carriage porch (c1954 Train Control Room), retaining outlines of previous partitions
    • unlined with exposed timber roof framing in wings
  • Walls, partitions and linings, including:
    • original and early tinted / coloured set plaster rendered masonry walls
    • face brick walls in lumber room and roof space of wings
    • timber stud framed lathe and plaster walls
    • timber-framed and VJ-boarded partitions (dividing partition with high-level picture rail and door-height panelled frieze), in office and washroom on northern side of east bay (c1901 General Managers office and washroom)
    • timber-framed and VJ-boarded part-height partition (c1950-60s) dividing office on southern side of west bay (c1954 wagons and livestock (west) and trains clerk (east))
    • timber-framed and boarded walls on north and east sides of messenger room
    • exposed timber stud frame walls (with underside of lathe and plaster visible) in north and south lumber rooms
    • unpainted timber boarded wall linings in south lumber room
    • timber boarded infill in opening formed in masonry wall (c1915) accessing room over carriage porch (c1954 Train Control Room)
  • Fireplaces in offices, including:
    • rendered chimney breasts, outlines of removed mantles and surrounds, arched brick firebox recesses, and stone hearths
    • moulded timber mantles and surrounds retained in offices in the northeast corner of the central bay (original Resident Engineer’s), and in the southwest corner of the east bay (original drafting office
  • Original and early timber joinery, including:
    • elaborate central passageway doors: low-waisted glazed over panelled timber framed doors, with an arched fanlight and sidelights that features a decorative metal grille (matching pattern on ceiling vents in other rooms)
    • original low-waisted, four-panel doors, with fanlights (accessing rooms along central passageway) and without fanlights (between rooms)
    • c1954 four-light glazed and rectangular panel timber panel doors in office on southern side of west bay
    • c1915 four-panel door with upper panels glazed, with fanlights and sidelight, set into former round arch headed window opening accessing upper storey of carriage porch
    • moulded timber architraves to door and window openings
    • c1920s-40s picture rails
    • wide moulded skirting boards to offices and passageway
    • internal pivot window in passageway wall of General Manager’s washroom
    • small sliding window with moulded timber architrave, positioned in messenger room wall over adjacent stairwell (possible messenger function)
    • small timber-framed opening with boarded door (possible communications window) in west wall of office on southern side of central bay (original Accountant – Traffic Department, c1954 Trains Room) 
    • row of two low-level windows, timber-framed with rectangular architrave outline frame on wall between passageway and office on southern side of west bay (original clerks office, c1954 wagons and livestock)
    • row of four high-level windows, central window multi-pane and end windows boarded, with simple timber architrave (possible 1930s) on wall between passageway office on southern side of west bay (original clerks office, c1954 and trains clerk)
    • timber awning over fanlight to messenger room door
  • Round arched openings defining bay walls along passageway, with set plaster rendered masonry columns and moulded plaster capitals
  • Evidence of redundant internal communication systems, including:
    • Lamson pneumatic tube system: holes and portions of conduits within the floor space, from system that connected the offices on the southern side of the central and west bays (original Accountant – Traffic Department and Chief Clerk, c1954 Trains Room; and original clerks office; c1954 trains clerk) with the ground floor telegraph room
    • remnant bell pulley system within the floor space of the western passageway and offices to the south
  • Evidence of redundant services, including:
    • remnant gas light fixtures, ventilation openings with decorative metal grilles, and pipework
    • early distribution board / switchboard in central passageway
  • Evidence of fixtures, fittings and ephemera relating to former room functions, including:
    • extant 1969 NSW Railway calendar and a chart describing the universal telegraph code, mounted on the chimney breast of the office on the southern side of the central bay (c1954 Trains Room)
    • mesh ventilation grilles, hand basin (in storage) and penetrations for service paperwork in internal VJ boarded walls, in General Manager’s washroom
    • outlines of former pigeon holes and shelves on the walls of the northwest and southeast offices
    • painted sign “PRIVATE” on General Manager’s office door
  • Evidence of original and early decorative schemes
  • Flooring, including timber frame and floorboards (where extant)

Features of the station building not of state-level cultural heritage significance are:

  • Alterations to original and early exterior doors in north wall, including: doors and/or sidelights replaced with timber board cladding, multi-pane double hung sash windows and flush-finish modern doors; fanlight metal mesh replaced with glazing and metal louvres; and fixed metal security grilles
  • Lead capping to buttresses (added c2014-15)
  • Fabric associated with post-1940 exterior and ground floor interior alterations, and post-1974 first floor interior alterations (excluding recent evidence-based reconstructions)
  • Opening formed in southern end of booking office dividing wall
  • Doorway inserted in east ticket office window opening
  • Modern roof void access hatches
  • Modern steel beam and rod structure installed in roof space and upper floor
  • Temporary structural supports including metal beams and posts
  • Temporary plywood infills to skylights, windows and doors
  • Modern glazed doors to southern end of former luggage passage
  • Modern glazed infill to western doorway of former guards and porters room
  • Modern timber studwork in west wing
  • Modern window and door hardware
  • Modern paint colour schemes
  • Modern lighting, plumbing and electrical services, including switchboard and cabling in toilet area
  • Modern signage to platforms
  • Temporary timber balustrade to first floor landing of northwest staircase
  • Temporary plywood sheet flooring and voids in first floor

Platform (1875)

The straight, narrow concrete platform along the northern side of the station building illustrates the original and continued use of the place as a passenger station.

Features of the northern platform also of state-level cultural heritage significance are:

  • Platform location, alignment and access to and from the station building via original doorways, demonstrating functional relationship with the station building

Features of the northern platform not of state-level cultural heritage significance are:

  • Modern platform fabric (platform has been previously scraped, excavated and reworked)

Country Station platform and awning (1939)

The long, slightly curved platform and awning extending to the west on the southern side of station building, are remnants of the Country Station (1939/40-1985) that was built between the station building and Roma Street.

Features of the Country Station platform and awning also of state-level cultural heritage significance are:

  • Bull-nosed platform awning and steel lattice framework (1939), with corrugated metal-clad roof and open sides
  • Long, narrow curved platform and awning alignment, to accommodate long distance trains

Features of the southern platform and awning not of state-level cultural heritage significance are:

  • Modern platform fabric
  • Raised ground level around station building (obscuring full extent of stone plinth and front steps, and contributing to damp issues)
  • Attachment of awning to carriage porch and associated damage to fabric

Views

The station building was designed by FDG Stanley to be a landmark seen from Roma Street so views of its southern elevation are of state-level cultural heritage significance. These views are partially obscured by later development including the Country Station platform awning, Busway Station and Brisbane Transit Centre.

Other views have been available over the life of the station building from a range of vantage points, including:

  • From and across the railway platforms to the north, and from the busway platform to the south.
  • From arriving and departing passenger trains from the northwest and northeast, and buses from the southwest and southeast.
  • From a wide arc spanning east-north-west, including from:
    • Countess Street to the west
    • Roma Street Parklands to the north
    • Albert Street and Wickham Park to the northeast.

References

[1] Entry on the Queensland Heritage Register, Charleville Railway Station [602368].
[2] John Kerr, Brunswick Street, Bowen Hills and Beyond: The Railways of the Northern Suburbs of Brisbane, Brisbane: Australian Railway Historical Society – Queensland Division, 1988, p9. This route followed the south banks of the Brisbane River, avoiding the cost of bridges, but so low-lying as to be flood prone.
[3] Railways were initially viewed by some as non–viable: as Rockhampton’s Northern Argus wrote in 1866: ‘To most thinkers on the subject the policy of borrowing immense sums of money for the construction of railways through a country so sparsely populated as Queensland would, a priori, appear of doubtful success, and this opinion has received ample confirmation from the embarrassments attending railway projects in the neighbouring colonies.’ (Northern Argus 19 December 1866 p2).
[4] Kerr, Brunswick Street, Bowen Hills and Beyond, p9; Brisbane Courier 8 August 1865 p4. The Ipswich-Brisbane section covered by river travel ‘satisfied all parties who were interested in cheap and speedy carriage of goods from and to the interior’ (Queensland Times, Ipswich Herald and General Advertiser, 26 September 1868 p3). By 1868, however, ‘It was plain to the meanest capacity that no railways could possibly pay without a terminus on the sea board, and the idea of rivers so tortuous as the Brisbane and the Bremer competing with a line of rail, was of course not worthy of a moment’s consideration.’ (Northern Argus 19 December 1868 p2). Goods traffic significantly out-earned passenger traffic: in 1871, for example, railway fares for the Southern and Western railway (Ipswich – Toowoomba – Dalby and Warwick) for the year totalled £16,995 19s 1d, while goods traffic was £57,538 8s 4d; in 1872 fares increased to £23,798 17s 3d and goods to £63,384 17s 7d. Queensland Government Gazette Vol 14 No 4, 16 January 1873, p97.
[5] In accordance with the rest of the network, a narrow gauge of 3ft 6in was adopted. Queensland’s use of the narrow gauge, rather than the wider gauge adopted in other colonies, reflected the government’s contemporary attitude of providing adequate railway line and station facilities economically. John Kerr, Triumph of Narrow Gauge: A history of Queensland Railways, Bowen Hills: Boolarong Publications, 1990, pp28-30; Rockhampton Bulletin 4 May 1872 p3.
[6] Rockhampton Bulletin 17 August 1872 p2.
[7] Queensland Government Gazette, Vol 14 No 47, 28 May 1873 p1; Kerr, Brunswick Street, Bowen Hills and Beyond, pp9-10.
[8] The site was not connected to the wharves, so tramway lines were proposed to carry goods through the city to Petrie’s Bight for intercolonial and international shipping. Telegraph 6 June 1873 p3; Brisbane Courier 7 June 1873 p6; Telegraph 17 October 1873 p2; Survey Plans B339 (1863) and N2518 (1870); Kerr, Brunswick Street, Bowen Hills and Beyond, p10.
[9] Queensland Government Gazette, Vol 14 No 96, 18 October 1873, p1717.
[10] Queensland Government Gazette, Vol 14 No 93, 11 October 1873, p1669.
[11] Francis Drummond Greville (FDG) Stanley was also the brother of Chief Engineer Henry Charles (HC) Stanley. FDG Stanley had also designed the Toowoomba Railway Station, built in 1874 (QHR 600872). Watson and Mackay, Queensland Architects of the 19th century, South Brisbane: Queensland Museum, 1994, p166-7.
[12] Stuart King, ‘Eclecticism in the work of Queensland Colonial Architect FDG Stanley 1871-1881’, Fabrications Vol 21 No 2, 2012, pp37-60, at pp50-1, 54.
[13] Brisbane Courier 30 October 1873 p2.
[14] The first and second platforms were originally accessed via a transverse platform, which also hosted a refreshment room. The transverse platform was removed in 1889 when Roma Street became a through station (connected to Central Station), and replaced by an overhead footbridge. This, in turn, was replaced by a subway in 1937. Allom Lovell Marquis-Kyle, Roma Street Railway Station Conservation Study: A report for Queensland Rail, 1993, pp11, 15-16.
[15] Roma Street Railway Station, Ground Floor and Upper Floor Plan, December 1873, via Tanner Kibble Denton Architects, Conservation Management Plan: Roma Street Station, 15 Countess Street, Brisbane, 2016, Appendix E.
[16] Brisbane Courier 16 August 1875 p2.
[17] Brisbane Courier 30 October 1873 p2 and 16 August 1875 p2; Queenslander, 17 January 1874 p7. The Toowoomba station had initially been designed by Sir Charles Fox and Son of England, and material imported, but the downturn in Queensland’s economy in the late 1860s resulted in a smaller station being built. The order for the iron building was cancelled, but not before certain elements were in transit from London; consequently a large iron carriage shed arrived and was dismantled for use on a number of projects, including the new Brisbane Terminal Station. Brisbane Courier 30 October 1873 p2; Queenslander, 17 January 1874 p7; Entry on the Queensland Heritage Register, Toowoomba Railway Station, Honour Board and Railway Yard Structures [600872].
[18] Buchanan Architects, Roma Street Railway Station: A Conservation Management Plan, 2004, p9 (image circa 1900) and p30; ‘Queensland 1898: Roma Street Railway Station, Brisbane’, image, John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland, negative number 85602; Frederick Wills and Henry Mobsby, ‘Brisbane 1899: Roma Street Station’, video, via National Film and Sound Archive of Australia, ID 43690.
[19] Telegraph 31 March 1875 p2. The brick was ‘of the same which is found at intervals in a line from Bowen Bridge Road eastward’. The stone for the non-ornamental parts of the building were sourced from Breakfast Creek.
[20] The brick was ‘chosen both on account of its durability and also as affording the greatest effect consonant with economy’: Brisbane Courier 18 October 1873 p5.
[21] The Murphy’s Creek stone was ‘admirably suited’ for ornamentation, ‘being a light-grey close-grained sandstone, easily worked, and unaffected in colour or otherwise by exposure to the weather.’ Telegraph 29 June 1874 p2.
[22] Queensland Government Gazette, Vol 14 No 114, 6 December 1873, p2060; Brisbane Courier 24 December 1873 p2.
[23] Rockhampton Bulletin 20 December 1873 p5; Telegraph 29 June 1874 p2.
[24] Queenslander 5 September 1874 p2
[25] Brisbane Courier 15 June 1875 p3.
[26] Brisbane Courier 16 August 1875 p2.
[27] Brisbane Courier 6 December 1907 p10 and 13 August 1924 p8 (referred to in both articles as the ‘portico’).
[28] The central line ran west from Rockhampton, the northern line John Kerr, Triumph of Narrow Gauge: A history of Queensland Railways, Bowen Hills: Boolarong Publications, 1990, p31.
[29]Telegraph 18 July 1877 p2.
[30] In 1876 Parliament voted £19,600 for construction of this and other improvements at the station. The cost of the goods shed was £7446. The Week, 27 November 1880 p7.
[31] Charles Whiting’s tender to extend the platform was accepted in June 1878, but it is not clear if the work was completed then or later: Brisbane Courier 10 June 1878 p3; Queenslander 6 October 1883 p562.
[32] An extension was opened to the South Brisbane coal wharves, departing the Southern and Western line and running through Woolloongabba. Entry on the Queensland Heritage Register, South Brisbane Railway Easement [600293]. Traffic to Roma Street also reduced from 1893-5, following the collapse of the Indooroopilly bridge. Entry on the Queensland Heritage Register, Albert Bridge [600232].
[33] The produce markets were removed to Rocklea in 1964, leaving only a single produce facility at Roma Street to receive chaff and hay. Thom Blake, ‘Roma Street Parkland Precinct: Historical Overview’, Brisbane: Queensland Department of Public Works, 2004, pp13-14; Kerr, Brunswick Street, Bowen Hills and Beyond, p20.
[34] Rockhampton Bulletin 20 February 1877 p2; Brisbane Courier 9 July 1878 p3; Kerr, Brunswick Street, Bowen Hills and Beyond, pp17-18.
[35] Both lines ran through Normanby, diverting around the central business district. Kerr, Brunswick Street, Bowen Hills and Beyond, pp17-18.
[36] Allom Lovell Marquis-Kyle, Roma Street Railway Station Conservation Study: A report for Queensland Rail, 1993, pp15, 17.
[37] Queenslander 15 January 1887 p105 (BD Morehead); Queensland Times, Ipswich Herald and General Advertiser 27 January 1887 p5 (Sir Griffith).
[38] Brisbane Courier 15 November 1895 p6 and 27 April 1900 p5.
[39] Telegraph 12 November 1915 p7.
[40] Brisbane Courier 3 April 1891 p5.
[41] Queensland Times, Ipswich Herald and General Advertiser 28 October 1902 p2.
[42] The Week 7 January 1910 p17; Buchanan Architects, Roma Street Railway Station: A Conservation Management Plan, 2004, p24.
[43] Queenslander 22 April 1899 p757.
[44] Entries on the Queensland Heritage Register, South Brisbane Railway Station [600307], Wallangarra Railway Station and Complex [601242].
[45] Brisbane Courier 13 December 1900 p7; The Week 14 December 1900 p10.
[46] Queensland Times 31 May 1915 p6.
[47] Telegraph 6 August 1934 p6; Daily Standard 24 August 1935 p8; Courier Mail 10 August 1937 p10; Sunday Mail 28 July 1940 p8. Other circuses were marshalled at Roma Street Railway Station, regularly drawing crowds: in 1907 around 2,000 people assembled at the station to watch the circus detrain; and in 1949 and 1951 over 5,000 people were reported to have flocked to the station to see circuses arrive (Telegraph 20 May 1907 p9; Courier Mail 1 August 1949 p5 and 23 July 1951 p3).
[48] Cairns Post 12 May 1936 p10.
[49] In 1902, for example, the Brisbane Courier described Roma Street as ‘the great receptive and digestive organ of the railway system of Southern and Western Queensland’: Brisbane Courier 10 February 1902 p5. Central Station lacked room for a goods yard and remained primarily a passenger station.
[50] The electric light was operated from a machine shed in the yard. John Kerr, Triumph of Narrow Gauge: A history of Queensland Railways, Bowen Hills: Boolarong Publications, 1990, p31; Queensland Government Gazette, Vol 34 No 14, 19 January 1884, p193; Buchanan Architects, Roma Street Railway Station: A Conservation Management Plan, 2004, p8.
[51] Telegraph 2 October 1901 p5, 12 October 1901 p2; Brisbane Courier 21 November 1901 p7.
[52] The strongroom encroached into the second-class booking office; the divisions between the booking offices had been abolished, and the offices operated as an entrance hall. Queensland Rail, ‘Roma Street Station Building’, November 1907 (QR Barcode 17969094); ‘Roma Street Passenger Station, Alterations to Accommodate Traffic Controller’, January 1911 and ‘Roma Street Station: Alterations for Traffic Collector & Inspectors’, April 1911 (QR Barcode 16384225); Queensland Railways, ‘Passenger Station: Roma Street’, 1920s (QR Barcode 16967137).
[53] Queensland Railway, ‘Passenger Station. Roma St’, plans 775 (1916), in Buchanan Architects, Roma Street Railway Station, 2004, p75; Tanner Kibble Denton Architects, Conservation Management Plan: Roma Street Station, 15 Countess Street, Brisbane, 2016, Appendix E; Queensland Railways, ‘Passenger Station Roma St’, 1920s (QR Barcode 16967137).
[54] Queensland Rail, ‘Additions Roma Street, Proposed Re-arrangement’, February 1915 (Plan K1453; QR Barcode `7723211). A clerestory was added to the porte cochère roof in 1954. Queensland Railways, Drawing M78, ‘Roma Street Station GM’s Office, Alterations Etc for New Train Control Rooms’, 1954, via Tanner Kibble Denton Architects, Conservation Management Plan: Roma Street Station, 15 Countess Street, Brisbane, 2016, Appendix E. Additional buildings were also constructed around the Roma Street Railway site for staff overflow, but none are extant.
[55] Brisbane Courier 24 December 1927 p10; 14 December 1928 p20
[56] Map, ‘Extent of the Queensland Railway network in 1925’, via Queensland Historical Atlas, https://www.qhatlas.com.au/railway-refreshment-rooms, accessed January 2020.
[57] Brisbane Courier 1 January 1921 p4.
[58] Central Station lacked space for expansion, while Roma Street had room for additional platforms. Toowoomba Chronicle and Darling Downs Gazette 9 July 1927 p7
[59] Worker 3 November 1936 p5; Courier Mail 12 November 1936 p15; Telegraph 28 April 1937 p22; Northern Herald 3 September 1938 p13.
[60] Telegraph 13 September 1939 p10; Allom Lovell Marquis-Kyle, Roma Street Railway Station Conservation Study: A report for Queensland Rail, 1993, pp16, 23, 39.
[61] Roma Street station had expanded from three to six platforms with the opening of the country station in 1940. Allom Lovell Marquis-Kyle, Roma Street Railway Station Conservation Study, 1993, pp15-16; Brisbane Telegraph 11 May 1954 p1; Nambour Chronicle and North Coast Advertiser 22 September 1950 p7.
[62] Architectus, ‘Queensland Rail Roma Street Heritage Building’, http://www.architectus.com.au/en/projects/queensland-rail-roma-st-heritage-building, accessed 4 December 2017.
[63] Allom Lovell Marquis-Kyle, Roma Street Railway Station Conservation Study, 1993, p22.
[64] Queensland Rail, ‘Roma Street Re-arrangement Sewerage Plan, Proposed New Station Building’, December 1939; GC Singleton, ‘Sketch Plan, Roma Street Station’, 1941; Queensland Railways Chief Engineer’s Branch, ‘Roma Street Old Station Building: Existing Floor Plans’, Drawing No 1981, December 1962.
[65] Courier Mail 11 October 1940 p3 and 27 September 1941 p5; Images: ‘Trainee soldiers at Roma Street Station, Brisbane, waiting to embark on a train to Caloundra Camp during World War II, 1940’, John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland, negative number 73715, and ‘Troops boarding train at Roma Street Station, 1944’, Brisbane City Council Archives, BCC-B120-30519.
[66] Telegraph 18 March 1942 p8.
[67] Queensland Rail, Drawing No 1370, Sheets 1 -3, Roma Street Old Station Building Alterations and Additions, March 1945.
[68] Queensland Railways, Drawing M5, Roma St Station GM’s Office, Proposed Alterations Etc for New Control Rooms – Sketch Plan, August 1953; and M78, June 1954; Allom Lovell Marquis-Kyle, Roma Street Railway Station Conservation Study: A report for Queensland Rail, 1993, p23; ‘Tracking history: Roma Street Railway Station by Architectus with Michael Kennedy, http://www.architectureanddesign.com.au/projects/small-commercial/tracking-history-roma-street-railway-station-by-ar, accessed 4 December 2017.
[69] Queensland Rail Chief Engineer’s Branch, Drawing M418, Roma St Station Platform 4, General Manager’s Entrance, Steps to 1st Floor Offices, February 1961.
[70] Allom Lovell Marquis-Kyle, Roma Street Railway Station Conservation Study: A report for Queensland Rail, 1993, p18. A new booking office and bus station were also constructed on the street frontage, but removed in the 1980s. Kerr, Brunswick Street, Bowen Hills and Beyond, p20.
[71] Allom Lovell Marquis-Kyle, Roma Street Railway Station Conservation Study, 1993, p1; Kerr, Brunswick Street, Bowen Hills and Beyond, p20.
[72] Queensland Railways Chief Civil Engineer’s Branch, Drawing L2670/1, Roma Street Refurbishing of Existing Subway, January 1986.
[73] Brisbane Marketing, ‘Parkland History’, Visit Brisbane, https://www.visitbrisbane.com.au/roma-street-parkland-and-spring-hill/news-and-features/parkland-history?sc_lang=en-au, 2018, accessed 2 December 2019.
[74] Aerial images, QAP5121189 (1992); QAP52761164 (1996); QAP5484095 (1997).
[75] Queensland Rail, ‘Roma Street Station Reconstruction – Addendum No 3 – Revised Architectural Drawings’, September 1994, QSA, Item ID 992133; site visit, January 2020.
[76] Tanner Kibble Denton Architects, Conservation Management Plan: Roma Street Station, 15 Countess Street, Brisbane, 2016, p97.
[77] Queensland Railways, Plan E/R 96, Roma Street Station Arrival/Departure Train Arrangements, January 1985; Allom Lovell Marquis-Kyle, Roma Street Railway Station Conservation Study, 1993, p22.
[78] While Sydney and Melbourne’s railway systems are older than Brisbane’s, their major railway stations (Central and Flinders Street) are both 20th century buildings. Older surviving railway buildings in Queensland include Grandchester (an 1865 timber station) and Toowoomba’s 1874 masonry station building. Allom Lovell Marquis-Kyle, Roma Street Railway Station Conservation Study, 1993, pp3, 29-31.
[79] Buchanan Architects, Roma Street Railway Station, 2004, p22.
[80] The work was undertaken by Architectus, Michael Kennedy, Kane Constructions and specialist tradespeople. Architectus, ‘Queensland Rail Roma Street Heritage Building’, http://www.architectus.com.au/en/projects/queensland-rail-roma-st-heritage-building, accessed 4 December 2017.
[81] Watkins Steel, ‘Roma Street Heritage Building’, http://www.watkinssteel.com.au/project/roma-street-heritage-building/, accessed 4 December 2017.
[82] ‘Tracking history: Roma Street Railway Station by Architectus with Michael Kennedy’, Architecture and Design, http://www.architectureanddesign.com.au/projects/small-commercial/tracking-history-roma-street-railway-station-by-ar, August 2015, accessed February 2020.
[83] Tanner Kibble Denton Architects, Conservation Management Plan: Roma Street Station, 15 Countess Street, Brisbane, 2016, p8.

Image gallery

Location

Location of Roma Street Railway Station within Queensland
Licence
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
Last updated
20 January 2016
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