Bulimba is a suburb in the Brisbane, Australia and was originally inhabited by the Yuggara people which have lived in the area for approximately 20,000 years.
Originally when the Bulimba area was settled, the area was used as farming land and called Toogooolawah in the 1820s. Bulimba was officially settled by pastoralist/farmer, David McConnel in 1849-50. He built Bulimba his house (now 34 Kenbury Street) a two-storey sandstone home designed as a traditional English residence. Shortly after the first school and church were built creating a more permanent farming settlement. By the 1880s, suburbs started to develop into a residential area.
The history of Bulimba continues into how its name was formed. The name Bulimba originates from a Yugarapul word meaning ‘place of the magpie-lark.’ The name origination holds true for nearby regions of Bulimba Creek and Bulimba Reach.
After the settlement was established, Bulimba was fast expanding with resources and services opening for residents of the area to enjoy. Some historical openings include Bulimba Brewery in 1882 (now Queensland Brewery Co. Ltd.), vehicular-steam ferry (1886), Newstead horse-tram service (1888) and an open air-cinema (1912-13). These establishments helped to form the settlements into a residential and industrial area for the years to come, as seen today in Bulimba.
Additionally, the history of Bulimba continued over the centuries and Bulimba acquired many heritage spots on the main street, Oxford Street including the Bulimba Ferry Wharf, Bulimba Memorial (129 Oxford Street), St John the Baptist Anglican Church (171 Oxford Street), and Bulimba State School (261 Oxford Street). There are many cool historical and heritage sites in the Bulimba neighbourhood to make this area an attractive place to visit and live. Oxford street today has been transformed into a modern main street with many trendy shops, cafés and restaurants for people to enjoy. Take a look at our Bulimba Heritage Trail article.
Over the 19th century, many more buildings and resources have been developed in Bulimba including Avro Picture Dome, a presently-running cinema from the 1920’s; site of Bulimba Police Station, City Cat river transport opening in 1996; multiple sporting clubs and a public library. These buildings and amenities have helped to frame the current-day Bulimba as the historical suburb many people love calling home.
The history of Bulimba started with one family and continues to grow with thousands of families enjoying a comfortable and laid-back lifestyle of living in Bulimba. There are many historical and traditional styled homes for sale in Bulimba to give any homeowner a taste of tradition and a piece of valuable Queensland history.
If you’re ever visiting Bulimba, we recommend starting with Oxford Street for some shopping, check out the ferry grounds, the Memorial park and some of the delicious food and beverages of local cafés and restaurants on Oxford Street. Bulimba is full of history and energetic in creating new growth in the area making this piece of Queensland a must-see for any history lover.