Federation Pavilion & Commonwealth StonePrint Page Print this page


Photographs supplied by Heather Stevens

The Federation Pavilion and Commonwealth Stone are significant as the site of the official ceremony on 1 January 1901 to mark the Federation of the Australian colonies and the inauguration of the Commonwealth of Australia.

On 1 January 1901, Centennial Park was the site of the official ceremony to mark the Federation of the Australian colonies and the inauguration of the Commonwealth of Australia. The ceremony was accompanied by much pomp and was attended by a vast crowd of estimated at 250 000. At a special pavilion erected in the park, Lord Hopetoun and Edmund Barton were sworn in respectively as the first Governor-General and the first Prime Minister of the new Australian nation. At the same time, the first Federal cabinet was sworn in. The oaths of office were administered by the Lieutenant-Govemor and Chief Justice of New South Wales, Sir Frederick Darley. The Commonwealth Stone 1901, was the site of the official ceremony and in 1904 was embedded in the ground as a permanent memorial to mark the exact spot where the Commonwealth came into being.

The plaster pavilion deteriorated rapidly and was removed from the Park in 1903. In 1904 the Commonwealth Stone which had been housed in the pavilion was placed on a sandstone pedestal surrounded by an iron picket fence. It remained there until the new Federation Pavilion was opened as part of Australia’s bicentennial celebrations in 1988.  The Federation Pavilion, 1988 was erected around the Commonwealth Stone as a permanent monument to Federation on the Bicentennial Year of European Settlement. The Pavilion is circular, representing unity, strength and a united cultural identity of the federated nation.


Address:Grand Drive, Centennial Parklands near Loch Avenue , Centennial Park , 2021
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -33.894711
Long: 151.238844
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Structure
Monument Theme:Government
Designer:Alex Tzannes (1988 pavilion)


Approx. Monument Dedication Date:1904 ( stone) 1988 (pavilion)
Front Inscription

Plaque :

Federation of Australia
1st Jan 1901

The Federation Pavilion 
Centennial Park

In commemoration of the Bicentenary of European settlement in Australia

This Pavilion was dedicated by His Excellency the Right Honourable Sir Ninian Stephen AK GCMG GCVO KBE Governor General on 1st January 1988

Hon R J L Hawke AC MP Prime Minister
Hon B J Unsworth      MP Premier

This Pavilion houses the monument erected for the 1901 celebrations to symbolise the Federation of six British Colonies into the Australian nation.  Here on 1 January 1901, the Commonwealth was proclaimed.

This plaque was unveiled by the Hon. John Howard MP, Prime Minister of Australia, on 1 Janaury 2001

The Hon. Robert Carr MP, Premier of New South Wales
Annette O`Neill, Chairman Centennial Park and Moore Park Trust

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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