Last updated 16Dec23
Bushfold Flats Shed site (Russ and Muriel Read’s 1957 Hut site)
Bushfold Flats Shed site (Russ and Muriel Read’s 1957 Hut site) is situated in the northern part of Bushfold Flats in the Namadgi National Park.
Location: GR 55H FA 83568-65325 (MGA94), Williamsdale 8726-4N 1:25000
• KHA web site: Also known as McMahons, Russell Reads Hut or Bushfold 2. This area of Bushfold was originally selected by the McMahons but later came part of Booroomba Station until it was sold to Russell Read. The first hut built here in 1955 by Russell Read, was damaged by a strong wind storm two years later. It was built by Russell Read with help from Cav Lalor, for his personal use to support grazing activities. It was used by Russell and his wife Muriel as casual accommodation, and included some home comforts such as a very nice Kooka stove. It was damaged badly in the 2003 fires and finally pulled apart by the ACT Conservation service in July 2003. NPA volunteers cleared the site and the materials were eventually removed. About 400m to the south-east stands the remains of the original shearing shed built by Russell in 1964. The exotic trees were planted by the Pearson family.
• KHA Namadgi database (private source). Site 859. Within 100 metres are 3 different hut sites. Martin McMahon’s (GR 835654) was built after 1902 and is marked by remnant chimney stones and timbers. Russell Read’s 1955 hut (GR 835653) was wind damaged and its materials were used in 1957 for the hut stil …
• Gudgenby: A register of archaeological sites in the proposed Gudgenby National Park, J H Winston-Gregson MA thesis, ANU, 1978. Site TH3. See extracts of the relevant pages in the photos above.
• Namadgi & Tidbinbilla Classics: Tough Bushwalks in Canberra’s High Country Graeme Barrow, Dagraja Press Canberra, 2000, pp 41-42 “Built in 1957 by the Read family to replace an earlier structure ruined by gales. Used for shelter while the owners worked their stock. It’s surprisingly tall and built of corrugated iron with dressed timber providing one wall. Bush posts and rafters support the roof, the floor is dirt, and a couple of ancient refrigerators stand near the door.”
• See NPA-ACT Bulletin 1995 article here by Matthew Higgins. This is what Matthew wrote:
“At the northern end of Bushfold stands Russ’s own hut. Built in 1957 it replaced an earlier hut built two years earlier but which was blown down in a windstorm. The chimney stones of the earlier hut remain a short distance down in front of the present hut. The present hut too has a skillion roof and bush timber in the frame, and one of the walls is weatherboard while the others are iron. The most distinctive feature is the enormous height of the building, for it has a very high roof indeed for this sort of building. Inside there are a couple of old fridges and a Bega wood stove in the fireplace. Around the hut there is a range of objects, one of the most interesting being an aged crosscut saw jammed in a tree trunk. Russ built the hut with help from mate Cav Lalor. Russ and his wife Muriel (both of whom, incidentally, now live in Ainslie) used the hut while doing periodic stockwork.”