WHEN Canberra was declared the new capital of Australia, the enterprising real estate agent who also founded Seaforth and Warriewood in Sydney, Henry Ferdinand Halloran, bought up the nearest freehold land in the Queanbeyan area, on which he planned to build future city to be called “Environa.”A new exhibition in The Q Exhibition Space in Queanbeyan Performing Arts Centre will tell the story of this extraordinary man through his original photographs, plans and maps, curated by Bridget Sant.
Presented by Queanbeyan & District Historical Museum Society with Queanbeyan City Council & The Lady Denman Museum in Huskisson, “Halloran’s Way – A Capital Idea,” helps mark both the centenary of Canberra and the 175th anniversary of Queanbeyan.
Halloran’s grand plan included space for offices, shops, a hospital, theatres and streets bearing names like Rue de Paris and Piazza di Roma. On the southern part of the estate, Halloran built stone monuments, including an arch and a statue of Henry Parkes on a column. Bandstands were built with iron roofs supported by tree trunks. The main top-mast off HMAS Sydney was erected, but after collapsing, it was moved to Jervis Bay.
No blocks were ever sold and the planned development never went ahead with the Great Depression intervening. Queanbeyan Council resumed the land to the north, because of unpaid rates, and it later became part of South Queanbeyan. Henry Halloran died in 1953 aged 84.
“Halloran’s Way – A Capital Idea,” at The Q Exhibition Space, off Lowe Street, Queanbeyan, September 6 – 28Monday – Friday 10am – 4pm, Saturdays 10am – 3pm, Sundays – closed.
Opening, 6-7.30pm, Thursday, September 5, all welcome.
Curator Bridget Sant will be presenting a floor talk at 11am this Friday, September 6 in The Q Exhibition Space, all welcome.