Mill and Millhouse | NSW Environment, Energy and Science

Culture and heritage


Mill and Millhouse

Item details

Name of item: Mill and Millhouse
Other name/s: Byrnes Mill
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Manufacturing and Processing
Category: Mill (Grain) - Corn
Location: Lat: -35.3509165114 Long: 149.2350975990
Primary address: Morrisett Street, Queanbeyan, NSW 2620
Parish: Queanbeyan
County: Murray
Local govt. area: Queanbeyan
Local Aboriginal Land Council: Ngambri
Property description
Lot/Volume CodeLot/Volume NumberSection NumberPlan/Folio CodePlan/Folio Number
LOT11 DP815597
LOT12 DP815597
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
Morrisett StreetQueanbeyanQueanbeyanQueanbeyanMurrayPrimary Address
49-58 Collett StreetQueanbeyanQueanbeyanQueanbeyanMurrayAlternate Address
Collett StreetQueanbeyan   Alternate Address


Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
 Private26 Mar 99

Statement of significance:

Byrne's Mill is very significant as the sole surviving mill building in the Canberra-Queanbeyan district, at least six other mills having functioned in the area at various times. The building, together with the adjacent millhouse, is also the only substantially intact nineteenth century industrial site in Queanbeyan. The mill and millhouse are significant in demonstrating the adverse effects that the coming of rail services exerted on the majority of manufacturing industries in rural centres. The mill, owing to its massing, general design and the form of its openings, is a good example of a late nineteenth century flour mill. The two buildings form part of an important remnant nineteenth century streetscape in Collett Street, linking with another nineteenth century building, Hibernia Lodge, situated further north along the street
Date significance updated: 06 Aug 07
Note: The State Heritage Inventory provides information about heritage items listed by local and State government agencies. The State Heritage Inventory is continually being updated by local and State agencies as new information becomes available. Read the OEH copyright and disclaimer.


Physical description: The mill was built for Martin Byrne who was a prominent landowner, hotelier and businessman in Queanbeyan. Byrne had nursed the idea of establishing a mill since 1870, but it was not until 1883 that he made a start. He let the building contract to an experienced Sydney mill builder, William Crispin, who in turn subcontracted much of the work to local builders Thomas Jordan and Thomas McCauley. Crispin would have designed the mill and supervised its construction, while Jordan and McCauley carried out the actual building work. The building, constructed of brick laid in English bond, was completed in September 1883 at a cost of 3,500 pounds. It was originally equipped with a fifteen horsepower engine and three pairs of elevators, while a freestanding smokestack 60ft (18.3m) high stood beside the building. Operations began in December 1883, with the mill's two employees soon producing forty bags of flour per day. Martin's son, James, managed the mill, while he and his family lived next door in the two storey mill house which had been built at the same time as the mill. With the arrival of the railway in Queanbeyan in 1887, cheaper Sydney flour became available in the town. Two years later, construction commenced of another mill near the new railway station in Oaks Estate. Realising that he could no longer compete, Byrne closed the mill down in 1889 and put it up for sale. It was subsequently used for many years and by different people as a store for farm produce. At some point, it was bought by J B Young's and used for storage. For the last decade or more, the building has housed a restaurant. James Byrne continued to live in the mill house until his wife's death in August 1902. The mill house was then occupied as a residence by William Hill, by Reginald Tetley in the period 1937-52 and by Archibald Campbell of Lanyon. It then passed to J B Young's and was used by the company as a residence for its employees. The building has housed crafts stores and a bookshop since the early 1980S. Byrne's mill was one of six to have operated in the Canberra-Queanbeyan district at different times. The mill building is a three storey brick structure with a corrugated steel gable roof. Window heads (of brick) are slightly rounded and there is a hoist and door to the top storey. High up in the gable ends of the building are what appear to be attic windows. The mill house or former manager's house is a two storey brick building with a corrugated steel roof. The roof is a gable with a skillion to the rear. Decoration includes rendered quoins and well crafted gothic bargeboards. The front of the building features a cantilevered balcony to the upper floor, complete with filigree work and a convex iron roof. Windows to this front facade are round arched with label moulds and there is a fanlight over the front door. The mill and mill house were identified as places to be kept by all three community workshops organised by the AHC in Queanbeyan in 1990 to investigate social significance, local significance and a community's sense of place.
Current use: Restaurant
Former use: Flour Mill

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Agriculture-Activities relating to the cultivation and rearing of plant and animal species, usually for commercial purposes, can include aquaculture Processing wheat and other grains-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Industry-Activities associated with the manufacture, production and distribution of goods Manufacturing foodstuffs-

Procedures /Exemptions

Section of actDescriptionTitleCommentsAction date
57(2)Exemption to allow workStandard Exemptions SCHEDULE OF STANDARD EXEMPTIONS
Notice of Order Under Section 57 (2) of the Heritage Act 1977

I, the Minister for Planning, pursuant to subsection 57(2) of the Heritage Act 1977, on the recommendation of the Heritage Council of New South Wales, do by this Order:

1. revoke the Schedule of Exemptions to subsection 57(1) of the Heritage Act made under subsection 57(2) and published in the Government Gazette on 22 February 2008; and

2. grant standard exemptions from subsection 57(1) of the Heritage Act 1977, described in the Schedule attached.

Minister for Planning
Sydney, 11 July 2008

To view the schedule click on the Standard Exemptions for Works Requiring Heritage Council Approval link below.
Sep 5 2008

PDF Standard exemptions for works requiring Heritage Council approval


Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Heritage Act - State Heritage Register 0036302 Apr 99 271546
Heritage Act - Permanent Conservation Order - former 0036308 Mar 85 521076
Local Environmental Plan 316 Oct 98 1488341
Local Environmental Plan - Lapsed  30 Aug 91   

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
Tourism 2007Mill and Millhouse View detail
TourismAttraction Homepage2007Mill and Millhouse View detail

Note: internet links may be to web pages, documents or images.

(Click on thumbnail for full size image and image details)

Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: Heritage Office
Database number: 5045727
File number: S90/05128 & HC 32931

Every effort has been made to ensure that information contained in the State Heritage Inventory is correct. If you find any errors or omissions please send your comments to the Database Manager.

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