A Walk Through
H i s to ry
Welcome to Brighton! This walk has been
designed to give you an insight into the
history and heritage of this special area. You
will probably take about 1 to 2 hours,
depending on whether you are a brisk walker
or a leisurely stroller! There is an optional
tour included, and we have even suggested a
break time so you can enjoy all that Jetty Road
has to offer. We hope you enjoy your walk.
START: 24 Jetty Road, Brighton
FINISH: 1 Commercial Road, Brighton
APPROX DISTANCE: 2.7km + 1km for
the optional tour
APPROX TIME: 1 to 2 hours
Please respect the privacy of residents.
This brochure has been compiled by the City of
Holdfast Bay in consultation with the Brighton
Brighton Historical Society, PO Box 544
Brighton SA 5048
City of Holdfast Bay, 24 Jetty Road,
Brighton SA 5048.
Tel.: (08) 8229 9999.
Holdfast Bay History Centre
Ringwood Community Centre
14 Jetty Road
Brighton SA 5048
Tel/Fax: (08) 8296 7500
Holt, Averil G 1991, The Vanishing Sands
Holt, Averil G, & Dallwitz, John 1989,
Brighton Heritage Study
McDougall & Vines 1998,
Brighton Heritage Review
Special thanks to Jill Golley, President,
1 Brighton Historical Society. Printed May 2001
A WALK THROUGH HISTORY
Originally dominated by huge sandhills and long
sandy beaches, the Brighton area was occupied
in the summers by the Kaurna people of the
In 1838, Brighton District was surveyed by Colonel
William Light. Wheat and vines became the main
produce and the area developed a rural character.
It also became a place of retreat - holiday houses
were built by wealthy professionals and many
prominent citizens of the day.
With the advent of the railway and the car,
settlement grew quickly and Brighton became a
popular day trip destination as people flocked to
the beach. The growing number of visitors brought
prosperity to the region. Hotels and guesthouses
opened up to accommodate them, and the
commercial strip of shops and cafes along Jetty
Road was very popular in the Roaring 20s.
In the past few years we have seen a resurgence
of visitors to the area. Curio shops and cafes
have been revamped and reopened. The new Jetty
has been given a modern look. The area is now
the focus for the annual Brighton Jetty Festival,
held in March.
1. CITY OF HOLDFAST BAY
CIVIC CENTRE, Municipal Offices
& Council Chambers 24 Jetty Road, Brighton
This Art Deco building was completed in 1937
and is considered to be one of the best pieces
of its period in the state. Apart from the
entrance, there have been few changes to the
original design. Notice the Art Deco styled
ironwork at the former entrance, balcony and
in the windows at the corner of Jetty Road and
Torr Avenue. The eastern wing, the former City
Hall, was added in 1959 and complements the
2. THE SPIRIT OF PEACE
As you walk past the Civic Centre towards
Brighton Road, you'll notice the Rose
Garden, a gift from the Lions Club.
Planted in 1995, the garden showcases
the new Spirit of Peace Rose and
commemorates the 50th Anniversary
of the end of World War II.
HOLDFAST BAY HISTORY
CENTRE, 14 Jetty Road
Next to the Library is a large bungalow
built for Dr Goode in 1924. At the
grand cost of £4000 it was one of the
most expensive houses built in Brighton
at the time. After World War II, it was
used as a hospital. In 1975, Ringwood was
purchased by the Council and today houses the
history centre and is used by many community
groups, including the Brighton Historical Society.
4. HOUSE 4 Jetty Road
Circa 1910, this residence is constructed of red
brick with distinctive gable and verandah elements
and terracotta roof tiles.
5. UNITING CHURCH MANSE
2 Jetty Road
This manse was built in 1913 by William John
Collyer as a rectory for the Methodist
ministers, and is still in use today. Note the
6. UNITING CHURCH & HALL
Turn left at the traffic lights and head towards
the Uniting Church. Opened in 1864, it was then
the largest building in the district. The attached
school room was added in 1871. As you stroll
down the side, you'll see the local limestone,
corniced windows and buttresses which helped
the church survive the 1954 earthquake.
Notice the 2 plaques. Walk down the other
side and back towards the porch. This porch
was added to the church in 1966. A more
recent addition is the lovely stained glass
window, designed to commemorate the 150th
anniversary of Methodism in Brighton. Included
in the design is an upturned boat - apparently
the first Brighton Methodist meetings were
held in a dugout with an upturned boat placed
over it for shelter. On the road side of the
porch is a wooden cross made of pylons from
the old Brighton Jetty, wrecked in the
7. BRIGHTON PUBLIC SCHOOL
Cross Brighton Road at the crossing,
turn right and you'll see the Brighton
Public School and the bluestone School
Master's residence, built in 1880.
8. ANGLICAN CHURCH
COMPLEX Brighton Road
Wander down alongside the new church building.
The back section was the original church, St
Judes, opened in 1855 after funds were raised
by many local businessmen. The 1954 earthquake
caused major damage and after some demolition,
the new Church was added at the front. Bishop
Short opened the original St Judes but was never
able to consecrate the building because £100
was still owed to the contractors! Consecration
eventually took place 122 years later in 1977.
The church bell on the other side was donated
by William Voules Brown. In the years before
Brighton Road traffic became so heavy, this bell
could be heard as far away as O'Halloran Hill.
9. ST JUDES CEMETERY
Rear of St Judes Church
The Brighton Historical Society conducts a
separate walk of the State Heritage listed
Cemetery for those interested, however, if you
just walk into the area and veer right (to the back
of the netball court) you can find the grave
of Sir Douglas Mawson, the famous Antarctic
explorer who was given a Commonwealth
State Funeral in 1958.
The cemetery was established in 1854 and was
the second burial ground in Brighton after North
Brighton. It was purchased and run by William
Voules Brown, who was curator and gravedigger.
The cemetery was not handed over to the
church until 1923. Members of many pioneering
families are buried here, including some from
the HMS Buffalo, which landed at Holdfast
Bay in 1836. Others include members of well-
known South Australian families such as the
Bickfords, Cudmores, Rymills and Hardys.
Lady Caroline Daly, widow of a former
Governor, and the eccentric Lucy May
Kingston, widow of former Premier
Charles Kingston, also rest here.
Catherine Helen Spence, who
championed the causes of women and
children, lies buried here alongside her
brother. As you walk back out to the
left, notice the quaint hall. Named
after Archdeacon French, this was the
site of Hopetoun School (1922 -1962,
see plaque). Keep going towards
Brighton Road, past Grundy Hall
(1932) and around the other side of
the church until you reach a small park.
10. MORETON BAY FIG TREES
The Moreton Bay Fig Trees were planted on this land
owned by William Voules Brown and are a significant
landmark along Brighton Road. Notice the Brighton
Senior Citizens Club memorial plaque - in memory
of the 19 people who died in the 1973 Snowy
Mountains bus tragedy.
11. BRIGHTON METRO
Henry Highet opened the original hotel in 1846 as
the Thatched House Cottage. Since then, many
changes have been made to the hotel. Despite a
recent upgrade, you can still see some features of
an Art Deco facade. Proceed to the corner (note
plaque on Hotel wall) and cross Brighton Road at the
12. OLD BEACH ROAD
Although many of the historic homes have been
demolished, quite a few interesting examples remain.
As you walk down Old Beach Road, notice the cottage
at No. 4, the bungalow at No. 7, the villa at No. 9
and the Tudor home at No. 13.
At No. 14, you'll find the first rectory for St Judes
Church, constructed in 1913 by local builders, Highet
No. 15 was built in 1913. It was originally a doctor's
residence and surgery - note the side entrance for
the practice. In 1954, it was purchased by the
Catholic Church as accommodation for the parish
priests, and is now used as the parish office.
13. EARLY COTTAGE
21 Old Beach Road
This cottage was built in 1849 by Henry Highet.
Mr Highet was a well known pioneering local
identity and builder of several of the earliest
buildings in Brighton including the first inn,
now the site of the Brighton Metro. This surviving
cottage (originally one of three) showcases the
vernacular architecture of the 1840s, which is
rare in this area.
Cross over the railway line to Beach Road.
14. ORIGINAL ADELAIDE
TO WILLUNGA LINE
The first train arrived in Brighton in
1913 with just 9 passengers. However,
on New Year's Day in 1915 about 6,500
people travelled by rail to Brighton -
outnumbering the local residents 20
to 1! The original Brighton station was
weatherboard, with a ladies waiting
room and a ticket office with an open
fireplace. The station's fine service was well
noted by former elderly patrons who dried their
wet stockings near the engine during the trip, or
their shoes by the open fire upon arrival.
15. ATTACHED SHOP
& RESIDENCE 20 Cedar Avenue
This is a typical corner shop and cafe of the 1920s
- notice the facade with its typical stepped
parapet. Built to catch passing trade from the
original station and subway (now both demolished)
the shop and cafe were very popular with the
original day trippers to the beach.
Turn into Beach Road, then take the first turn
right (no street sign), then left.
2 Elm Street
As you walk up, notice the little laneway, used
by the nightcarts on their rounds. The house at
No. 2 was built in 1920 for Charles Reade,
although he never actually lived here. Reade was
a world-renowned proponent of the Garden Cities
and Town Planning Movement, and in 1916
became South Australia's first Town Planner.
17. HOUSES ON BINDARRA ROAD
As you walk toward Bindarra Reserve, you will
see quite a few different styles of architecture -
Art Deco at No. 5, 1920s country homestead at
No. 6, Tudor at No. 11 and a villa at No. 14.
Are you ready for a break?
You might like to use the rest rooms at Bindarra
Reserve, and then head towards the Jetty.
Alternatively, a coffee or lunch break at one of
the cafes on Jetty Road might be just the thing
before you continue.
(about 15 minutes, along the Esplanade)
Turn left at Bindarra Reserve.
154 Esplanade - Built in 1913 by the father
of noted Solicitor Dorothy C. Somerville, the
3rd South Australian woman to be called to
the Bar. She established the first female law
partnership in 1923 and went on to become
the State's oldest practicing solicitor. Miss
Somerville died in 1992, aged 95.
156 Esplanade - Built about 1900 by Dr
H. Swift, father of famous gynaecologist
Sir Brian Swift. Note the original timber
shutters, timber verandah detailing and
158 Esplanade - This property was
bequeathed to the Anglican Diocese
as a holiday home for the clergy
161 Esplanade (corner Marlborough
Street) - This is an extremely interesting
building of western red cedar, which
came from Canada in kit form around
1912. It was built as a holiday home
for Dr Charles Todd, Secretary of the South
Australian Medical Board. Charles Todd was the
son of Sir Charles Todd, famous for the Overland
Telegraph. The Todd River in the Northern Territory
is named after Sir Charles, and Alice Springs is
named after his wife.
As you head back towards the Brighton Jetty,
note the memorial seats.
18. BRIGHTON JETTY
& ARCH OF REMEMBRANCE
The first Brighton Jetty was built in 1886. Extremely
popular with fishermen and day trippers, it
weathered the sea and storms for over 100 years.
Over that time, its original T-shape was reduced
to an L-shape, until finally it was badly damaged
in 1994. The new concrete Jetty was opened in
1996 and has become quite a landmark. Telstra's
telecommunications tower at the end is 25 metres
tall and was designed to resemble a ship's mast.
Local artists have recently added their touch to
the Jetty with 3 modern pieces of work, based on
the elements of light, wind and water.
An older landmark is the Arch of Remembrance,
standing in front of the Jetty. The original Arch
was unveiled in a dedication service in 1926.
It was damaged by storms in 1963 and rebuilt
in 1964. On the Arch you'll see the 114 names
of those from the Brighton area who served
in World War I, and the 22 names of those
who died. The bronze laurel wreaths were
added to the Arch after World War II. Note
the memorial pavers - money raised from
their sale funded the modern artworks
on the Jetty.
19. DRINKING FOUNTAIN
This fountain was erected in 1926 by the Women
of Brighton in memory of Kathleen Duncan Whyte,
nee Macully. 'Kitty' was the daughter of Rev.
Macully (see No. 22, Dunluce) and taught swimming
at Brighton for many years. In 1919, Kitty saved
a swimmer from drowning and was awarded a
Grand Diploma by the Royal Lifesaving Society.
Sadly, in 1926, while swimming at Brighton, Kitty
was attacked by a shark and died. She lies buried
in St Judes Cemetery.
20. PIER BUILDING 136 Esplanade
Straight across the road from the Jetty, you'll see
the unique 3 storey Pier Building. Originally built
in 1922 as shops and offices with flats above, it
was the first major structure along the
Esplanade. Today it survives as an important
reminder of the 1920s holiday activities
21. JETTY ROAD, BRIGHTON
A stretch of interesting curio shops and
cafes, this street is rapidly gaining popularity
once again. Note the typical building style
of the 1920s - single storey shops with
shaped parapets, two storeyed shops
with balconies and verandahs.
Turn left into the first street (Gurrs
Road), then take the pathway at the
end of the street to the 'Castle'.
12 Yester Avenue
This grand design was based on a wing
of Dunluce Castle in Northern Ireland.
It was built in 1912 for Reverend
Alexander Macully who was rector of
St Judes Church and obviously a man of considerable
private means. The original grounds of twelve acres
housed stables and a coach house.
Walk to your right down Yester Avenue. Take one last
look back at the Castle before turning left onto
23. ATHELNEY 2 Athelney Avenue
Built in the 1880s, this was the beach residence of Dr
Alexander Stewart Paterson, Colonial Surgeon and
Resident Medical Officer of Parkside Lunatic Asylum.
Athelney is set in a perfect example of the typical
early seaside garden.
24. ROW OF FOREST RED GUMS
& MANNA GUMS Alfreda Street
Now walk down to Alfreda Street, where you'll notice
the forest red gums and manna gums, planted by Dr
Paterson. In the next street (King Street) once stood
the home of Sir Douglas Mawson, which he planned
while on one of his Antarctic expeditions.
Sir Douglas Mawson
with members of his
Sir Douglas Mawson
(original in the
25. HOUSE 3 Dunluce Avenue
Built in the early 1850s, this small
residence was originally the coach
house for 'The Olives', which used to
stand next door. Olive trees were
grown in the district to act as wind
breaks for the orchards and vineyards,
and as you can see, some of them still
remain. Rumour has it that a
smugglers' tunnel ran near this property
in the 1840s.
26. HOUSE 34 The Crescent (Corner)
This was a part of the 1913 subdivision around
Dunluce House. This home was built in 1914
for Ernest Anthoney who was Mayor of Brighton
in 1923-24, and went on to serve as a Member
of Parliament for 30 years. The house is well
maintained and retains its typical hedging and
garden layout from the 1920s. Also note the
interesting gate posts.
Cross the train line with care and turn right,
along Torr Avenue.
27. WINDSOR THEATRE
& FREEMASONS LODGE
1 Commercial Road
Constructed in 1925 as a lodge and community
hall by the Order of Freemasons, this building is
a true indication of the amazing growth of
Brighton during the 1920s and 30s. The front
section of the building was leased as a picture
theatre, which is still in use and shows 2 films
We hope you have
enjoyed your Walk
through History at Brighton. If you would
like some information on other walks in the
area, please visit the Glenelg Visitor Information
Centre, Foreshore, Glenelg, SA 5045 or contact
by phone on (08) 8294 5833.
Brighton Road as it used to be
HOLDFAST BAY HISTORY CENTRE
The Holdfast Bay History Centre is situated in the
1920s historic home of Dr Goode, Ringwood, at 14
Jetty Road Brighton.
The Centre collects, protects, and provides
information pertaining to the history of the City of
Holdfast Bay. It also houses a small reference library
as well as an extensive microfiche holding of
relevance to those researching their
The Centre is staffed with a part-time historian
Become a volunteer!
If you have a
passion for the
history of the
area, the Centre
needs you as a
In return, you will be provided with the congenial
company of like-minded people and the satisfaction
of a job worth doing.
Where: Ringwood Community Centre
14 Jetty Road Brighton 5048
When: Tues – Thurs: 8.30am – 4.30pm
Fri: 9.00am – 12.00 noon
Phone/Fax: (08) 8296 7500
VISIT HISTORIC KINGSTON HOUSE
Built in 1840 as Marino Inn, Kingston House is the
oldest building in Brighton.
Cameron Avenue, Kingston Park.
Open Sundays 2.30 - 4.30pm, March - November
Enquiries: 8296 4128
7. 8. 10. RESER
TH E VEN
KING GEORGE AVENUE 1. 27. C
INDRA TERRACE 20.
OLD BEACH ROAD
RAILWAY 14. LINE
ESERVE N S
* SIR DOUGLAS MAWSONS
HOME ONCE STOOD
FOLD OUT FOR LOCATION MAP
YOUR NOTES & OBSERVATIONS
24 Jetty Road, Brighton
PO Box 19, Brighton SA 5048
Tel: (08) 8229 9999