In Don Watson’s “THE BUSH”, he tells us that the red cedar (Toona Ciliata) is hard to find outside of a half a dozen public gardens. However, he says, dead ones abound. In Sydney town Hall, for example: the interior of this mid-nineteenth century monster, by turns French Second Empire, Italian Renaissance, Jacobean and English Aesthetic in style, swallowed an unknown number of red cedars from the Hawksbury River stands. As the material of choice among mid-Victorian designers of public buildings, unpainted red cedar turns up in the walls or furnishings of town halls, parliaments, post offices, churches, libraries, courthouses and railway stations built on the eastern seaboard before 1880. being strong, light and durable, easily carved and turned, it was put to use in house frames and picture frames, interior panelling in trams and rail carriages, staircases, doors, floors, ceilings, shutters, window frames, skirting boards, mantelpieces, veneers, boats, cigar boxes,fine furniture and coffins.
From Don Watson.
Tag Archives: Sydney town Hall