Brisbane Open House
84 William St, Brisbane City
Saturday // 10am to 3pm
General access (self guided)

The Queensland Government Printing Office (former) was the first purpose-built government printery in Queensland and operated on the site from 1862 to 1983, playing an essential part in the administration of Queensland for 121 years. The dissemination of Hansard and other government information is an important part of democracy, promoting public access to parliamentary debate and facilitating transparency regarding government decisions. The expansion of the site and addition of new buildings over time was a result of the growth of the Queensland Government and its functions.

As part of a government precinct that has existed since 1825, the place helps to demonstrate the early importance of this part of Brisbane to the administration of the Moreton Bay penal settlement and later the colony and state of Queensland. The proximity of the printing office to Parliament is also a reflection of its important role in government.

The former Government Printing Office buildings fit within a pattern of substantial, well designed masonry buildings constructed to the designs of colonial and government architects. The structures show an adaption to Queensland’s climate and the increased availability of materials and skills over time, including improvements in brick manufacturing processes. The designs of the constituent buildings also demonstrate the increased ambitiousness of the projects of the Colonial/Government Architect’s Office between the 1870s and the 1910s. (History courtesy of

What's Open

Ground level and level 2

Tour Tips

Wear smart casual attire // No wheelchair access

Additional Activities

Unique views of Queens Wharf Brisbane construction site // Historical and development footage of QWB // Coffee van


Government Printery Office

William Street building: 1872–1874 // Stephens Lane Wing: 1884–1887 // George Street wing: 1910–1912
John James Clark // Edwin Evan Smith // Francis Drummond Greville Stanely