A new Post Office and telephone exchange building was erected in Wynnum by the Commonwealth government circa 1923-24. The single building incorporated a public space, mail room, telephone exchange and staff rooms. The telephone exchange operated until 1955, and the Post Office until 1995. It has since been used for commercial purposes.
The first Post Office in Wynnum was established in 1901.The local federal member of the House of Representatives, Mr J H Bayley agitated for the erection of a new Post Office and telephone exchange at Wynnum from at least 1921. Early in 1923 Bayley informed the Wynnum Town Council that the Commonwealth Minister for Works had approved the work and plans were being prepared. The drawings were produced by the Commonwealth Department of Works & Railways in Brisbane, and by July 1923 it was reported that construction work would commence shortly.
The single storey Post and Telegraph Office at Wynnum was elevated on low brick piers. Largely of timber construction with a concrete and timber façade, the Post Office was divided into various functional rooms. The public space, office counters, and a public telephone cabinet were at the centre front of the building and accessible from an eastern and western porch. The mail room, the largest in the building, was located behind the counter and stretched to the eastern side of the building. In the front north-western room was the Telephone Exchange with a 400-line manual telephone system. Behind the exchange were separate ‘retiring rooms’ for female and male employees. A mail veranda for the initial receipt or despatch of mail bags, and the entry for staff was behind the mail room. Letter carriers had a room on the south-eastern corner of the building.
In the south east corner of the block of land a timber shed was erected for the linemen, with workshop, men’s room and toilets for male staff.
The manual telephone exchange remained in operation until replaced in 1955 by an automatic exchange erected in Edith St.
Statement of significance
Relevant assessment criteria
This is a place of local heritage significance and meets one or more of the local heritage criteria under the Heritage planning scheme policy of the Brisbane City Plan 2014. It is significant because:
The place is important in demonstrating the evolution or pattern of the city's or local area’s history
as an essential civic building constructed in Wynnum during the 1920s.
The place has a special association with the life or work of a particular person, group or organization of importance in the city’s or local area’s history
Operating as Wynnum's post office and the centre of postal, telegraph and telephone services from 1923 to 1995.
Brisbane Courier, 1922-23
Mervyn N Beitz, From Mangroves to Moorings
NAA Plan, barcode 1708709
Citation prepared by — Brisbane City Council (page revised June 2022)