Walk Around Reid

Mildenhall’s Row of two story semi detached houses, under construction, Booroondara Street, Reid Collection – National Library of Australia A3560,5864

Are you someone who has strolled around Reid as a break from the office, someone who has driven through on your way to Anzac Day celebrations, or someone who is simply curious about this foundation suburb.

On Sunday 22 November the Reid Residents’ Association is offering a Walk Around Reid to those who are interested to learn more about Reid – its history and architecture and residents.   The walk begins at 2pm from the Reid Tennis Club and costs $10. Bookings can be made by emailing: info@reid.northcanberra.org.au. Numbers are limited.

Reid is one of Canberra’s oldest suburbs and its largest heritage housing precinct. Named after Sir George Houston Reid, Australia’s 4th Prime Minister, it was gazetted as a suburb on 20 September 1928.  Much of the construction occurred before then in 1926 and 1927.

The Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia had been meeting in Melbourne, Victoria. With Parliament relocating to the new national capital, Canberra, there was an urgent need for accommodation for public servants. The construction of the suburbs of Braddon, Barton, Forrest, Yarralumla, Ainslie and Reid began in earnest. Reid was designed to house middle level public servants, Ainslie those who could afford slightly less and Forrest for those who were more senior.  The majority of the suburb had been built by the time the Provisional Parliament House was opened by the Duke and Duchess of York in 1927.

For those interested in urban design, Reid is a good example of the English garden city movement and American Beautiful principles that promoted quality houses, generous space for private gardens, and parks for community recreation. The suburb’s houses were limited to range of designs, influenced by related styles of the period – Georgian Revival, Mediterranean and Spanish Mission.  Its landscaping was integral to the design and was based on street plantings by Charles Weston with evergreen cedars lining the main streets and deciduous plane trees lining the minor streets.

Copies of The Heritage of Reid will be available for $5. Come along and find out more. You are most welcome.