Before Britain invaded the ‘Great Southern Land’ in January 1788, the continent’s first waves of settlers had developed their own structures for shelter: made of stones in southern latitudes, or branches and sheets of bark in temperate and tropical zones. Britain’s colonial era began with tents and rain-dissolving huts dotted around Sydney Cove, then evolved to larger buildings made with lime-mortared bricks and sandstone blocks.

Topics surveyed in Chapter 1 of Australian Architecture are:

—First Australian peoples

—Britain’s invasion

—Clarifying Aboriginal structures

—Colonial tents and huts

—Local building materials

—First Government House

—Designing a new Albion

—Developing Norfolk Island

—Developing Rose Hill (Parramatta)

—Empty huts and survival stresses

—Bloodworth the brick master

—Firmer fortifications

—Looking for land grants

—Governor Grose’s verandas

—Millhouses and windmills

—Early entertainment venues

—Sydney’s first tower

—Burning down the church

—Building hospitality venues

—Signals of architectural gentrification