The Queen's Hall at Parliament House

Christine Smith

Grovedale, Australia

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FEATURED in Australian Capital Cities 25-01-2012
FEATURED in Melbourne Victoria 03-06-2017

Camera: Canon EOS 400D, Lens @ 17mm, ISO: 200, Aperture: f4, Shutter: 1/20

The Queen’s Hall can bee seen at Parliament House, which sits facing the intersection of Spring and Bourke Streets in Melbourne and has been the seat of the Parliament of Victoria, Australia, since 1855 (except for the years 1901 to 1927, when it was occupied by the Parliament of Australia). It was between 1877 and 1879 that construction of The Grand Hall, now named The Queens Hall, and the Vestibule took place. These were built to fill up the space between the Chamber of Legislative Assembly and the Chamber of Legislative Council. A competition was held for a design for the building, and John Knight’s design won the first prize of £500,[citation needed] but was not used. The government architect, Charles Pasley, subsequently came up with a design of his own. Subsequent observers have suggested that he borrowed heavily from Leeds Town Hall, which even today is widely considered to be among the finest civic buildings in the world. The design was later modified by an architect in his office, Peter Kerr. Construction of the project was managed by John Knight who was also on Casley’s staff. The building is an example of Roman Revival architecture. In December 1855 construction began on the site in Spring Street, and the building was completed in stages between 1856 and 1929. The chambers for the Victorian Legislative Assembly and the Victorian Legislative Council were finished in 1856, at which time Bourke Street ran between the two chambers. The library was completed in 1860, and the Great Hall (now Queen’s Hall) and the vestibule in 1879. In the 1880s, at the height of the great boom fuelled by the Victorian Gold Rush, it was decided to add a classical colonnade and portico facing Spring St, which today gives the building its monumental character. This was completed in 1892. The north wing was completed in 1893 and refreshment rooms at the back of the building were added in 1929.

Artwork Comments

  • Tom Gomez
  • Christine Smith
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  • Christine Smith
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  • Christine Smith
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