Thursday, July 1, 2010


The Ginninderra Public School house and residence is one of the earliest extant (surviving) buildings in the ACT. The school building and attached residence were built between 1883 and 1884 as the districts first substantial stone educational facility. The building was constructed of squared rubble stone with red brick trims, wooden floorboards and a corrugated  iron roof. From the early photographs it appears the school maintained an enrollment of around 25 pupils.

Image Archives ACT (here)

Charles William Thompson (1868-1948) started his teaching career in the Nass Valley school in today's Australian Capital Territory circa 1883 and came to Ginninderra in 1886. By 1895 the school was beginning to decline in attendances and in 1911 the school was operating half-time and was closed following the opening of the new school in the nearby village of Hall, where most of the pupils lived.

Mr Thompson was transferred to the Hall Village Public School and continued to live in the Ginninderra School residence. In 1913 the Ginninderra Post Office transferred into the school building and Mr Thompson operated the facility until 1934 and retired aged 66. He died in 1948 aged 80.

The Canberra Times - 18 December 1948
Clipping National Library of Australia (here

In 1962, with the retirement of the local postmaster, Richard O’Sullivan, the last of the Ginninderra Village buildings, the post office and with it the Ginninderra Public School permanently closed. The Building was then used for storage, later as a museum and, more recently, as a retail outlet associated with the Gold Creek Village tourist complex.

There is an excellent read with old photographs and documents at Archives ACT (here) and some photos and a map below.

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