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Memorable Tenth Anniversary Concert

Memorable Tenth Anniversary Concert

Well over three hundred patrons enjoyed an afternoon of fine band music under a sunny sky at the re-scheduled 'Twilight' concert. The Bands, under the direction of Adam Power (Victoria Street Brass and... more »

'Two Villages' launched

'Two Villages' launched

Labor Member for Yerrabi, Michael Pettersson, launched 'A tale of two villages' at the Centre yesterday. The exhibition is a contribution to the Canberra and Region Heritage Festival, which has dozens... more »

Student invasion

Student invasion

The Centre was delighted to again host a large (thirty four) group of student from the University of Canberra for their Filed Work day. Students were required to select and object from our collection,... more »

'The little spinster'

'The little spinster'

The old Hall school became a film set on 12th January. Annie, the film director, has given us this information about the project. The project is a low-budget feature film written and directed by local... more »

Southwell clan members visit

Southwell clan members visit

A small Southwell family group visited the Centre by special arrangement on Saturday 23rd December. Lesley Southwell is a great grandson of Samson Southwell who made his home at 'Wattle Park' Bedellick... more »

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A Tale of Two Villages - Exhibition

The two villages are of course Ginninderra and Hall. Ginninderra had its heyday in the 1890’s and early years of the new century when there was a church, school, post and telegraph office, blacksmith shop, police station, store, a nursery, and a boot-maker, Farmers Union, School of Arts, cricket club, and the large Ginninderra Estate.

When Canberra was selected as the site for the capital and the new Federal government began resuming the land, Ginninderra’s days were numbered. A site for a new village nearby had been selected in 1882, and Hall was set to grow into the kind of village that Ginninderra never quite became.

‘A tale of two villages’ throws light on Ginninderra’s origins and how it was gradually shaded by Hall, but its starting point is much earlier, with insights into the indigenous was of life in the district.

Support by the Village of Hall and District Progress Association is gratefully acknowledged.

Where : Former Hall Primary School, Victoria Street, Hall. Easy parking; disability access.

Cost: Free - but your donations very much appreciated

Hall Market days 10.00 - 4.00pm. Thursday mornings 10.00 -12.30 pm; groups by appointment -

'Rediscovering Ginninderra'

This exhibition is now being incorporated into 'A tale of two villages', telling part of a much larger story. Where was it? How and when did it begin? Who were the movers and shakers? When and why did Hall take over?

'Ginin-ginin-derry' was an aboriginal locality first traversed by Europeans in the early 1820's and first settled by them around 1826, at ‘Palmerville’. From the 1860's for half a century Ginninderra flourished.

A very productive agricultural area, Ginninderra supplied grain to the Araluen and Majors Creek goldfields, then wool to the Sydney markets. William Davis, then Tom Gribble, Edmund Rolfe, 'Babe' Curran and others helped build a fine reputation for agriculture. But by 1915 Ginninderra was fading away. What happened? What is left?

See some well-known buildings in miniature, family profiles for the entire ‘class of 1905’ at Ginninderra School, and the story of George Harcourt’s home ‘Deasland’, now under threat as a ‘Mr Fluffy’ building. Other subjects are 'Palmerville', the Cricketers Arms Hotel, the Ginninderra blacksmith shop and the Ginninderra Farmers Union.

We hope that recent arrivals to the ACT, descendants of settler families, and everyone else curious about what was here 'B.C.' (Before Canberra), will take the opportunity to 'rediscover Ginninderra'.

['Rediscovering Ginninderra' was supported with funding from the ACT Government's Heritage Grants Program].

Our ANZAC Exhibition: 'When Hall Answered the Call'- still open.

This 2015 Exhibition has been extremely well received, and remains open for the time being. Here is some of the Visitor feedback:

Andrew Leigh, Member for Fraser : "It was a treat. You’ve done an extraordinary job on the exhibition, and it was a real honour to be there to acknowledge the efforts of you and the team".

"The real stories of real people. Wonderful variety and displays"
"Evidence of a huge amount of careful research and preparation"
"Such lovely work! You've all worked very hard and it shows"
"Had a most enjoyable time. Very friendly group"
"Wish to say that this exhibition is awesome! I do believe that the smaller the exhibition, such as this, the higher the quality"
"Thank you for all your hard work. I feel you have done all the men proud"
"You are an amazing group. I have so enjoyed the display and all your efforts. Came to Canberra to visit the War Memorial. I think this will be the highlight"
"Your festival events and open days are going from strength to strength - keep up the good work!"
"Wonderful. Twelve months of dedication. Congratulations."
"Truly excellent in every respect"
"What a fantastic job the volunteers have done! This is a truly unique exhibition and deserves more public recognition"
"Pleased I came. I am in awe of the display and those who put it together".

View a selection of photos of the exhibition here

There is also now a fine publication derived from the exhibition - authored and edited by the exhibition's curator Allen Mawer. 'When Hall Answered the Call' is available from the Centre.

[Mawer G.A., When Hall Answered the Call, Friends of the Hall School Museum and Heritage Centre, 2015. 40 pp. 45 illustrations. Price $10]

Exhibition Opening times

Every Thursday Morning, 10.00 am - 12.30 pm
1st Sunday of the month (Hall Market Day), 10.00 am - 4.00 pm
Group visits by appointment. Email:

Entry is Free. Your donations will assist the Friends of the Hall School Museum. Easy parking and disability access.

When Hall Answered the Call

‘When Hall Answered the Call’ is the title of the Hall School Museum’s special exhibition to commemorate the centenary of Anzac. The exhibition was officially opened by Andrew Leigh MP on 11th April 2015 as part of the ACT Heritage Festival.

There is an excellent review of the exhibition by Dr David Stephens at Honest History. The exhibition was previewed by Canberra times writer Ian Warden, who was particularly enchanted by the 'incredible inedible banquet'

Museum volunteers were busy for a year, researching local soldiers’ histories and fitting them into the context of the Great War. Their stories are displayed together with photographs and memorabilia. A special feature of the exhibition is a re-created setting of a Welcome Home ceremony that was held in the local Kinlyside Hall at the end of the war.

The exhibition pays special attention to the district’s several Rolls of Honour, all unofficial local initiatives by civic, school, church and sporting groups. These Rolls all date from the first few years after the war, long before those at the Australian War Memorial and state equivalents such as the Shrine in Melbourne.

The exhibition features stories from the Hall home front where families gathered together for mutual support in the absence of their menfolk. A local Red Cross Branch was formed where comfort parcels were assembled and socks hand-knitted and sent to the troops.

For further information:
email :

On this site

The Centre is actively seeking to make more of its material accessible on-line. This site now has two significant displays - on-line exhibitions. The first tells the stories of more than fifty one-teacher bush schools of the Canberra district, which were been the subject of exhibitions in 2012 and 2013. A second display, deriving from our 2016 exhibition 'Rediscovering Ginninderra', has just been added. Both displays are designed to be added to and contributions from viewers are welcomed.

On this site you can also learn about the origins and development of the Centre, find out about the Friends of Hall School Museum and Heritage Centre and how to join, and see the latest news and photographs about our activities.

You will also find a selection of links to other sites that may be of interest to you, and a 'document register' from where you can download various documents concerning the Museum. You can return to the main Hall community website at any time by selecting the 'Hall Website' icon.

Centre Opening Times:

Entry is Free. Donations will assist the Friends of the Hall School Museum. Easy parking and disability access.