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Canberra history – The first Canberra Hospital

By johnboy 13 January 2009 26

Riot reader Old Canberran is in the process of scanning in the photos he took back in 1948 and is sending some highlights in for us to gawp at.

This is a more recent photo to kick off the series but of interest for pub trivia purposes coming with the following information:

    “It is the original Canberra Hospital in Balmain Circuit, Acton. Now part of the ANU as the School of Earth Sciences. I was born there at the hands of our next door neighbour, Dr John James after whom the hospital is named.”

We’ll get into the old photos next week.

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26 Responses to
Canberra history – The first Canberra Hospital
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Holden Caulfield 11:22 am 20 Jan 09

Awesome contribution, thank you!

GardeningGirl 11:07 pm 14 Jan 09

I had a feeling there was another building near the old library. So it was the patents office?
One of my earliest memories is of being driven out to gawk at the new Scrivener Dam.

Granny 5:32 pm 14 Jan 09

Wow! I never realised that the lake was so new when we arrived in ’69.

old canberran 5:28 pm 14 Jan 09

Hi wishuwell, you may be thinking of the Westlake Settlement which was a bunch of workers cottages and a tennis court around about where the yacht club now is. Whatever it is that your Mum was talking about must have been way back because the Hospital in my photo was built in 1914.
She could even be referring to “Springbank” which consisted of 3 houses on the flats near the old Acton racecourse. The Kay family lived in one of the cottages and they had dairy cattle there. Someone living there may have been a midwife. They all went under water in 1964.
There were also some workers cottages in Acton not far from the hospital.
Apart from that I can’t help any further.

wishuwell 9:20 am 14 Jan 09

old canberran the hospital I was refering to was in all possibility not called Canberra Hospital I only mention it because my grandmother and my mother (who was born in a tent at Fyshwick) would talk about it. It was among a number of Westlakes early sites now under water.

old canberran 8:48 am 14 Jan 09

I was staggered when I heard they knocked down Cameron Offices. I was working at the NCDC when they were built back in the 70’s. Exposed concrete does get a bit grotty after a while though and they did look grotty. A good clean would have done wonders.

I think I’ve got a pic of the old Library somewhere. I know I’ve got one of the old Patents Office which was next door.

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