Walter Henry BarnesPrint Page Print this page

(Diane Watson)
(Diane Watson)

Photographs supplied by Diane Watson / John Huth

The fountain commemorates Walter Henry Barnes M.L.A., a former State Treasurer who represented Bulimba and Wynnum from 1901 to 1933.

Barnes won the Legislative Assembly seat of Bulimba as a ministerialist in 1901 and held it until 1915. He won the seat of Wynnum in 1918 and held it until his death. He was secretary for public lands in the Philp government of 1907-08 and, although he was initially left out of W. Kidston's first ministry, in June 1909 he was appointed secretary for public instruction and in October was also given responsibility for public works. When D. F. Denham succeeded Kidston in February 1911, Barnes became treasurer and secretary for public works. He held these offices until the government's defeat in 1915.

In 1924 the previously faction-ridden non-Labor parties united to form the Country Progressive National Party which, under the leadership of A. E. Moore, ended Labor domination of Queensland politics by its victory at the 1929 general election. Because the new party lacked ministerial experience, Moore overlooked Barnes's advanced age and made him treasurer. Known for his financial and economic caution, orthodoxy and conservatism, Barnes considered the Depression was caused by waste and government extravagance; only by reducing public expenditure and the costs of production, he argued, could Queensland be led out of its economic difficulties. 

When the Moore government was defeated in 1932, Barnes held his seat with a reduced majority. The difficult years of office had seriously affected his health, however, and he died in Brisbane on 19 February 1933.

The designs submitted by Mr. G. R. Beveridge, architect, of Abbott Street, Ascot, has been selected by the committee for the memorial fountain to be erected at Wynnum to perpetuate the memory of the late Mr. W.H. Barnes. Eighteen designs were received and the one chosen will have a concrete base 10 feet square with the fountain rising to a height of 23 feet. The base of the fountain is to be constructed of grey granite, with a freestone shaft above. Provision has been made for three bubble fountains. On a marble panel a bronze base relief of the late Mr. Barnes will surmount a suitable inscription. 
The Telegraph (Brisbane,), 29 August 1933. 

The memorial erected on the Esplanade at Wynnum Central in honour of the late Mr. W. H. Barnes will be unveiled on July 15 by the Chief Justice (Sir James Blair). The local returned soldiers and marine boys are to be invited to form a guard of honour. 
The Courier-Mail (Brisbane), 4 July 1934.



Address:Wynnum Esplanade, Wynnum Wading Pool Reserve, Wynnum, 4178
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -27.441944
Long: 153.176111
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Fountain
Monument Theme:People
Sub-Theme:Government - State
Designer:Mr. G. R. Beveridge (architect)


Approx. Monument Dedication Date:1935
Front Inscription

Erected to the memory of Walter Henry Barnes M.L.A.

Died February 19th 1933 after representing Wynnum Electorate for a period of thirty year

"His race well run, his work well done" 

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