Woden Cemetery

T4 Woden Cemetery 1
 

T4 Woden Cemetery 2T4 Woden Cemetery 3

How to get there

From Tharwa, return north on Tharwa Drive and continue north on Drakeford Drive. Turn right onto Johnson Drive at the roundabout then left at Ashley Drive. After 3 km turn right into Erindale Drive then left onto Yamba Drive. After 5 km turn left into Justinian Street.

From the Canberra and Region Visitors Centre continue south down Commonwealth Avenue and cross over the bridge, around Parliament House and continue south towards Woden. Veer left at the large roundabout and turn right into Justinian Street just before the Canberra Hospital.

Why is this interesting?

In the late 1920s and early 1930s the only options for burials were St John’s Churchyard at Reid and Hall Cemetery. Canberra was in need of a public cemetery. Proclaimed in April 1934, Woden Cemetery’s first burial finally took place in 1936.

The distinct cruciform design of the cemetery is the focal point for the layout of its avenues, which provide a circular design pattern of tree planting and burial sections. This provides a simple yet elegant atmosphere appropriate for burial ceremonies and contemplative visitations.

As a burial ground is still in use today, Woden Cemetery has been included on Track 4 as an example of how a ‘modern’ cemetery can offer strong historical links to the area’s local history. In spite of the many changes in the surrounding vicinity to allow for Woden Town Centre’s commercial development, the cemetery’s tree planting and landscaping from the early 1930s is still visible today.