The Redcliffe Jetty History

Published 12:00pm 4 December 2018

The Redcliffe Jetty History
Words by Melissa McMahon

The Redcliffe Jetty has been considered the heart of the Redcliffe peninsula ever since boats carrying holidaymakers started arriving in the late 1800s. In those days, Brisbane residents who wanted to visit the popular seaside resort either had to embark on a four-hour coach ride or a two to three-hour journey by sea.

The Redcliffe Jetty History

1881 Reverend John Sutton and other landowners requested Assistant Marine Surveyor FDG Stanley to survey for a jetty at Redcliffe Point

1881 (May 19) The survey report was submitted to the Government. It suggested a jetty be built at Redcliffe Point - north of the reefs projecting from the point. The site had been used by steamers landing timber and was considered the most sheltered and accessible part of the coast. The estimated cost was £1050

1883 (July 18) The ratepayers of Humpybong signed a petition which was presented to the Caboolture Divisional Board. The Board decided to refer the subject to a special committee to further investigate the project. It was felt a Redcliffe Jetty was needed to stop residents having to travel to the Woody Point Jetty and to provide better deep water access to the peninsula.

1884 (July) The Caboolture Divisional Board invited tenders for the Redcliffe Jetty. No suitable tenders were received from outside companies, so the work was carried out by day labour. S Walters was appointed supervisor and was expected to take approximately three months

1884 (August 27) Work began on the Redcliffe jetty. Approximately 10,000 feet of timber was on site and ironwork was supplied by Messers JW Sutton and Co

1885 The Jetty Construction Committee of the Caboolture Divisional Board reported that the construction of the Redcliffe Jetty was finished. The final cost was £1357.5.2

1888 The Redcliffe Divisional Board was proclaimed

The Redcliffe Jetty History

1889 (May 7) The Redcliffe Divisional Board was presented with a petition from the residents of the district requesting an extension to the Redcliffe Jetty. The Board agreed and appointed Messers E MacDonnell and JC Ham to make preliminary arrangements

1889 (May 29) The government nautical surveyor Mr Cullen surveyed the waters

1889 (July 15) Mr Stannix appointed as engineer for the extension project

1889 (August 6) Mr Stannix was authorised to prepare plans to extend the Jetty by 290 feet - bringing the total length to 700 feet. Tenders were called shortly after and a tender was accepted from Edward Clarke of Toowong at a cost of £588. Works were to be completed within 12 weeks. The existing diamond head was to remain and be roofed. A local hotel keeper did the plumbing required on the roof of the new pavilion and Mr Thomas Watson did the timber work, both free of charge. Work was finished December 3

1892 (January 13) JE Macgregor was appointed caretaker of the Redcliffe Jetty for £15 a year, payable monthly

1904 (February 2) A tender was accepted from E Richardson to erect gates at the entrance of the Redcliffe jetty to prevent dangerous crowding that sometimes occurred when boats came in

1906 (November 6) JE MacGregor resigned as caretaker of the Redcliffe Jetty. George Corscadden was appointed as his replacement

1917 (October 1) Plans for the construction of a sea wall were drawn up by Harding Frew and accepted by the Board. Mr Frew was appointed engineer of the project

1918 (June 10) Tenders for the sea wall construction were considered. Christie and Blondell were the successful tenderers at a cost of £3,209.13.4 for a wall 900 feet long. Another £300 covered administrative costs

1919 (July 7) The seawall at Redcliffe was officially finished

The Redcliffe Jetty History

1919 (November 3) After several reports indicating that it would be more economical to build the new jetty than to repair the deteriorating old one, Mr JRW Hyde, a civil engineer, was authorised to prepare plans and specifications for a new structure. After several tests, it was decided to build the new Jetty 66 feet north of the old jetty and to extend it a further a further 200

1920 (February 2) A tender was accepted for the new Redcliffe Jetty from Taylor Bros at a cost of £14,279.17.6

1921 (July 1) Redcliffe was proclaimed a town

1921 (February 1) The Marine Department declares the old Redcliffe Jetty unsafe and it is closed to the public

1922 (January 23) The second Redcliffe Jetty officially accepted by the Redcliffe Town Council

1923 (December) The wooden Jetty pavilion was completed

1924 (November 14) The Council imposes a toll of one penny per person going onto the jetty

1925 (February 2) The toll is abolished - only to be reinstated exactly nine months later

1928 Electric power was switched on in Redcliffe

1930 The Electrical Installing Company was contracted to provide six lights on the Redcliffe Jetty

1935 The Hornibrook Highway opened

The Redcliffe Jetty History

1937 The Jetty pavilion was replaced with a brick structure

1938 An entertainment parlour opened in the Halfway House on the Jetty

1959 Redcliffe was proclaimed a city

1961 Hayles Cruises Pty Ltd - the only remaining commercial boat users of the Redcliffe Jetty - produced a report on the deteriorating condition of the jetty. The results of the report meant the end of the Miramar mooring on the jetty unless the structure was repaired or replaced

1973 (December) The Halfway House demolished

1976 The Jetty was severely battered by Cyclone David

1979 The Houghton Highway opened

1983 Jetty decking was repaired

1995 The Department of Transport undertook a condition assessment and risk analysis of the jetty - recommending that the mooring and berthing of vessels be banned and a gate be installed to prevent pedestrian access during unfavourable weather

1995 (September) Redcliffe City Council calls for expressions of interest for the design and construction of a new Redcliffe Jetty. Plans went on display two years later

1998 (April) New plans that were placed on display included a breakwater facility

1998 (September 2) The Council approves the tender submitted by McMasters Queensland Pty Ltd

1998 (October) Demolition work began on the old Redcliffe Jetty

1999 (January) Construction work began on the new Redcliffe Jetty

1999 (November 27) The third Redcliffe Jetty opened

The current Redcliffe Jetty features heritage lights, seats and drinking fountains in recognition of the two previous structures. Its concrete deck also has a railway track motif along its length. Railway tracks were an important feature of the first two jetties and were used to move cargo between the head of the jetty and Redcliffe’s main street.

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