I always have a nostalgic feeling driving through this area. When my family first moved to Brisbane in 1986 we lived in the ‘suburb’ or Rosalie, first in Elizabeth Street and then on top of the nearby hill in Howard St. Our landlady used to own the antique store on Latrobe Terrace. As children we used to walk at night with Dad up past the Brewery and Lang Park (its still Lang Park to me and always will be) in Milton to watch the trains and during the day we would ride our bikes around the Governor’s residence and through the back hills of Bardon. We caught yabbies below Slaughter falls before doing the bushwalk up Mount Coot-ha. I played for Bardon Latrobe (soccer) and The Gap Purple (cricket, we only won two games in three years). When we moved in we were shown pictures from 1974 of the shops down at the bottom of the hill (near Milton State School) and we were told “Now Wivenhoe is built… it can’t happen again…”
These suburbs are some of the very oldest settled areas in Brisbane, particularly Red Hill. Now the look of these areas is subtly changing, and not always for the better. If council law states that the old Queenslanders are to be preserved, then how are so many ultra-modern houses sneaking in? No suburbs encapsulate better the evolving face of Brisbane.
Very well established, green leafy suburbs like Bardon, Paddington, Red Hill, Milton, Ashgrove and Kelvin Grove will always carry substantial termite populations. The massive tracts of wilderness that surround these areas guarantees as much. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t change a thing and the benefits outweigh the detractors. But it does mean as a resident in these areas that you must be especially vigilant. Particularly when your house is made almost entirely out of timber, as so many are in the area.
If you are lucky enough own one of the classic older homes around here, you would already be aware that maintenance and upkeep are a constant drag on the hip pocket. Regular painting is very important, keeping the weatherboards free of wood rot (which can subsequently attract termites). Don’t neglect your termite inspection either! Some of the timbers and mouldings in these older dwellings had become difficult and expensive to source and a regular check can save you thousands down the road.