Byrne Terrace: Wickham Terrace, Brisbane (demolished)

Byrne Terrace was a row of five double storey terraces on Wickham Terrace in Brisbane. It was completed in 1886 by developer George Byrne, just before the subdivision act which effectively stopped further terrace development, this row of houses overlooked the growing city and its river.  Byrne terrace was built for the wealthy and was occupied by businessmen, doctors and medical professionals some of who used the houses as consulting rooms.

Byrne Terrace.  Wickham Terrace, Brisbane.  Photo from the State Library of Queensland

Byrne Terrace. Wickham Terrace, Brisbane. Photo from the State Library of Queensland

Before the construction of terraces houses, Wickham Terrace was noted for its handsome Victorian villas, some of which still exist.  However over the next couple of decades Brisbane’s wealthy moved to new estates in suburbs such as Ascot, Hamilton and Indooroopilly.

For a time up until the 1930s some of the houses in the terrace also operated as private school.

The terrace was not unlike many of the wider grander terraces built in Melbourne and Sydney at the time.  A high parapet covering its roof lined with balustrade.  Triangular pediments marked each house and gave them symmetry, upon which the terraces were also numbered.   The mid terrace (3) had a larger pediment and temple motif topped by urns with the name of the terrace emblazoned on it.   A cornice was propped up by decorative brackets below which appeared a decorative frieze.  Each compartment had two columns which divided the bays into three, each dressed in the standard iron lacework with fringes, brackets and balustrade at the second storey.  The first storey had a frieze of iron lacework and a deeper fringe with pendants for additional screening.   The party wall had some decoration and extended to the street, meeting the solid gateposts and fence topped by cast iron palisade to separate the courtyards and set the houses back from the busy street.

Little information is on offer for the exact address, architect, for who it was named or when it was demolished.  Presumably the terraces were demolished in the 1960s or 1970s when much of Wickham terrace was redeveloped for accommodation, hospital buildings and offices.  If anyone knows anything or even lived in these terrace, I’d love to hear from you.

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