Building Australia, a colourful new series that uncovers the hidden history of Australia’s houses, will premiere on History on Tuesday, July 30 at 8pm.
Hosted by actor, comedian and screenwriter John Doyle, best-known as ‘Roy Slaven’ of Roy and HG fame, this unique six-part series takes a beautifully nostalgic walk through our most iconic houses, from yesteryear right through to the present day. Episodes were filmed in Adelaide and Burra earlier this year.
From the terrace to the Queenslander, the homestead, the weekender, the Federation house and the project house, the series provides a fascinating social history of Australia through the evolution of our houses, exploring how Australia has shaped the Australian house – and in turn, how the Australian house has shaped the lives and cultures of Australians.
Throughout the series, Doyle charts the journey of the Australian house through his observations and conversations with a range of experts, enthusiasts and home owners right around the country.
Episode one looks at inner city living, the terrace, tracing the earliest development of the terrace from those that landed in the first fleet and initiated the tradition of the European style building.
In episode two we see that pioneers adapted to the unfamiliar climate of the tropics through the evolution of one of Australia’s most iconic houses – the Queenslander.
The third episode looks at the homestead, a house unique to Australia and inextricably tied to the workplace, followed by the weekender, which evolved due to the introduction of paid holidays and the five day week.
The Federation house tells the story of the optimism and confidence that powered the movement to make Australia an independent nation. And finally, there is the project house, which came about as a result of the housing crisis due to post-war immigration and the baby boom.
Building Australia is an exclusive History Channel production, produced by Michael Tear and Harriet Pike at Bearcage, in association with Screen Australia and with the support of the Australian Council of National Trusts.