Blogging the Bookshelf

Blogging my bookshelf – one book at a time

Blogging the Bookshelf header image 2

The Wedding Cake – “Inside the Canberra Press Gallery: Life in the Wedding Cake of Old Parliament House” – Rob Chalmers

May 22nd, 2012 · No Comments · Architecture, Australiana, History, Politics

The ‘provisional’ Parliament House in Canberra was nothing like the NSW Parliament House I was familiar with in Macquarie Street, Sydney, which dated back to the mid-1800s. Canberra’s Parliament House stood alone, south of the Molonglo, fronting on to lawns to its north; not far beyond, sheep grazed. A market garden alongside the river was on the site where the High Court and National Gallery now stand. The Treasury building and the National Library were yet to be constructed. To the north-east, across the rose garden, the Administrative Building was the only major office in sight. The long, gleaming white parliamentary building of three storeys was flanked on either side by extensive lawns and garden areas enclosed by a high hedge. It was later referred to as ‘the wedding cake’ because, when viewed from the northern bank of the Molonglo, that is certainly what it resembled. Behind the building was a lane that provided service access for the kitchen, dining rooms and bars. On the other side of the lane running parallel with the parliament building and almost as long was a dense ground-hugging hedge—the habitat of feral cats.

Tags: ····

No Comments so far ↓

Like gas stations in rural Texas after 10 pm, comments are closed.