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Rooney Building

241 - 245 Flinders Street, Townsville

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Rooney Building (2016); Heritage Branch Staff

Rooney Building (2016)

Rooney Building (2016); Heritage Branch Staff

Rooney Building (2016)

Rooney Building (1930s) State Library of Queensland; State Library of Queensland

Rooney Building (1930s) State Library of Queensland

This structure was originally built as a pair of buildings, designed by Brisbane architect Richard Gailey and constructed in 1883 for Charters Towers mine director Edmund Harris Thornburgh Plant. After construction they were reputedly occupied by Pollard's Music Store and by the Royal Bank of Queensland from 1890. In 1892 Rooney & Co., the leading builders of the region, took out a lease and traded here for the next 46 years. Tragedy struck the family in March 1911, when Matthew Rooney, his wife and daughter were lost in the sinking of the ship ‘Yongala’, off the coast near Ayr. In 1917 Rooneys Ltd purchased the building and modernised the ground floor as a large furniture showroom in 1928. Rooney’s went into voluntary liquidation in 1936 and the property was sold to Brisbane electrical retailers Chandlers in 1938. They promptly opened a new electrical showroom on site. Chandlers merged with another local electrical company, Stephensons, in 1954 and relocated, after selling out to Samuel Allen and Sons who also ran an electrical goods showroom. In 1979 the ground floor facade was altered to accommodate shops or restaurants.

Coordinates: -19.257634, 146.81850764

Full details of this heritage-registered place are in the Heritage register.

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
Last reviewed
1 July 2022
Last updated
28 February 2023