Woodridge

The area where Woodridge now stands was set aside as a timber reserve when the first selections were being taken up in the early 1870s. The township of Booran was surveyed in 1888 following the construction of the railway. The current streets of Victoria, Smith and Bruce, Edward, Douglas, Plunkett and North Street indicate the location of that township.

Woodridge became known as Grahams' Siding in 1913 after timber getter Dugald Graham, received permission to erect a siding. Initially he wanted the siding called Grahamvale or Grahams' siding. He then suggested Devar. He sold to Octavius Stubbs in June 1913. Stubbs had a poor impression of Graham and objected to the locality being named after him. Unofficially Stubbs named his property Woodridge, although the Railways Department called it 15 Mile Siding at that time. The Railway Department officially accepted the name Woodridge when the platform was made accessible to the travelling public in January 1917. The post office recognised the name in November 1917 and the first Woodridge name plate was erected on 19 January 1918. Local progress associations were an integral part of life in these developing areas. In Woodridge, the association under Secretary S McDonald built its first public hall in 1917.

In 1916 Stubbs began subdividing his land. Initially some ten acre lots were created along Wembley Road and into Bardon Road. Stubbs built simple timber homes on six of these lots and sold them for £340. By 1918 Garfield Road was surveyed, with further subdivisions in that area. On the other side of the railway line, Arthur Blackwood began subdividing land between North and Ewing Roads, including Blackwood, Defiance and Croydon Roads. This was marketed as Dorothy Park Estate and subdivisional approval was given in November 1918. Land parcels were generally quarter acre lots. He also subdivided Mabel Park Estate, beginning in 1915. Land along Garfield Road was further subdivided by Stubbs in 1924. The site of the current progress association hall was held in trust by William Seeleither and John Thomas in 1918 and, in June 1927, was further held in trust by Seeleither and Edward Miller. Seeleither later ran the local sawmill.

A Provisional School operated from the Progress Hall from 1924 to 1932. A new school on the corner of Wembley Road and Railway Parade opened in 1932. Mr Boyle who operated a sawmill in Railway Parade donated one acre of the two-acre site. During the 1930s about 30 farming families lived in Woodridge and as well as growing fruit vegetables and fodder crops, they also started up a poultry industry.

The establishment of government services to Woodridge began with the appointment of a receiving officer for the mail in May 1923. She was Mrs J. Towning. Townings had been residents from at least 1917. Mr John Towning was to run the local store for many years from his property at 34 Railway Parade near the corner of Charles Avenue. The telephone exchange opened in 1928 with Lloyd Barden, a retire grazier, the only subscriber until Mr H. Newmann installed the second telephone in 1938. Electricity came to Woodridge in 1939.

Land for housing was in demand and in 1943 the Tingalpa Shire Council was offering allotments in the old town of Booran (Woodridge) for £5 ($10). Further growth occurred in the 1950s with subdivisions undertaken by R.G. Oates, of George Street Brisbane and Arthur Trinder. R.G. Oates subdivision was approved in May 1951 and included Oates Park. At that time the park was reserved as the Woodridge Sports Ground. Trinder had purchased most of what was originally George Cannon's property including Karawatha Forest and land along the railway line. Arthur Trinder began his subdivisions in 1952, and he built houses on many of his allotments. In 1959, Trinder gave 222 acres to the Lutheran Church. By August 1966, plans were underway for construction to begin on the Trinder Park Rest Home which opened in 1969.

Woodridge telephone services continued to expand. In October 1953, there were five telephone subscribers in Woodridge and by 1958 there were 58. From 8 June 1945 the post office was run by George Livingston from his home at 22 Railway Parade. The office remained in this locality until 1 July 1953 when it was relocated to Station Street in a new office run by Thomas Tonkin.

Reticulated water was installed in Woodridge in 1963. Much of the development in the 1960s was the result of the developers buying up large parcels of land in the area. The Queensland Housing Commission began building homes in Woodridge once the water had been connected. Eight homes were constructed in Woodridge between June 1963 and June 1964, making a total of 13 constructed in the area since 1945. The housing boom continued and by the end of the 1968-69 financial year, 472 Housing Commission houses had been built in Woodridge, since 1945, with that number rising to 1,547 by mid 1977.

The post war growth in Woodridge saw four churches built in Railway Parade. The Methodist Church operated from 1951. St Catherine's Catholic Church opened in August 1954 followed by St James' Anglican Church in October 1955. In 1959, the Trinder family donated 230 acres to the Lutheran Church and ten years later the Trinder Park home for the aged was opened. A Lutheran Sunday School operated in the Progress Hall from 1961 and an Air Force Hut was later erected on the Railway Parade site donated by Pop Trinder. The Sunday School Hall was dedicated in March 1964.

The Ambulance service began in 1964 in Railway Parade with the building completed in 1967. A fire station opened in Garfield Road in 1965.

A new automatic telephone exchange opened in Kingston Road, opposite Paradise Road in April 1961. It superseded manual services in Woodridge, Slacks Creek and Kingston. During 1967, demand for telephone services in the Woodridge/Kingston area led to calls for an upgrade to the exchange. An unofficial post office was located in the Argonaut Shopping Centre from 1970.

The Woodridge post office changed hands in March 1968, with Mrs Ngaire Horner purchasing the post office and residence from Mrs Truran. In 1969, Mrs Horner, built a block of twelve shops in Station Road, which were known as Horner's Court. The post office then relocated to Shop 41 and a TAB was built on the old post office site. The post office remained at that locality until a new building was constructed at 36 Blackwood Road. It opened for business on 2 August 1976, with Woodridge now the district mail centre.

A new Ambulance station was opened near the Parklands Shopping Centre in 1970, and a library was established in the old Ambulance Station at that time. It was relocated to the Parklands Shopping Centre in 1972. A temporary Police office was established in a relocated home in Station Street in 1971, with a permanent site procured in Railway Parade later that year. The new station opened in 1972, and is now the home of Radio FM101. In 1975 the Woodridge Civic Centre opened with a shire office, community hall and Library. The shire office and library are now occupied by the Logan Art Gallery.

In 1969 a new Catholic School opened in Woodridge and a state school was established in Woodridge North. Woodridge State High School opened in January 1972 and the Woodridge Opportunity School opened in November 1972. Enrolments at Woodridge State School continued to rise rapidly in the early 1970s following an influx of British migrants. In January 1974, enrolments totalled one thousand six hundred and eighty-nine students, making it the largest in Queensland at that time. Other schools were quickly built to take the pressure off Woodridge, including Mabel Park State School in 1974, Harris Fields School in Smith Road, in January 1975, and Berrinba East School in 1977. Woodridge High School built its community hall in 1986.

The Woodridge Tavern opened in 1973 followed by the K-Mart shopping centre in 1978. Woodridge Centrepoint shopping centre was under construction in 1981.

The new Logan Shire Council began operations in July 1979, with some officers based in the Woodridge office of Albert Shire. Logan was declared a city on 1 January 1981. The new administration centre was almost complete at the time and was formally opened by the Governor of Queensland, Sir James Ramsay on 21 February 1981.

A new Catholic Church was under construction at St Pauls in Woodridge during 1980-81. It was formally opened in October 1981. Mabel Park State High School opened in January 1984.

The growing population in Woodridge led to the construction of a new police station in 1992. A revision of the structure of the organisation also led to the new building becoming the head office of the Logan Police District. The official opening occurred on 10 October 1992.

The Booran Park Neighbourhood Centre was formally opened in October 1995. In 2004, Community Renewal funding provided a new multi-purpose community hall located on the site which was completed in November 2004 at a cost of $340,000.