Bold Park Historical Highlights

Pre-European history

Nyoongar people had lived in the area for over 45,000 years. Bold Park and its surrounds including Perry Lakes and the Indian Ocean provided plants, animals and resources for food, shelter, clothing medicine and implements. Indigenous people camped in the area up until the 1960s.


Henry Trigg was granted 500 acres of land around the current Perry House. He established quarrying and lime burning works on the land. The quarry has now become The Quarry Amphitheatre and the lime-kilns are hidden by bush in the hillside near Perry House.


Walter Padbury bought Reabold Hill and the surrounding lands, an area consisting of 1,234 acres, which became known as the Limekilns Estate. A stockyard, tannery and slaughterhouse were added to the estate and Padbury slaughtered there for many years in connection with his butchering business (at the corner of St Georges Terrace and King Street, now the site of Padbury House).


The Limekilns Estate was sold to the Birch brothers who reportedly planted a vineyard and also used the slaughter house.


On his epic journey from Port August to Perth, Ernst Giles rested his camels by a lake on the Limekilns Estate, which is now known as Camel Lake.


Joseph Perry purchased the entire estate, established horse-breaking and stock dealing, and lived in a stone cottage further east of the present Perry House.


The City of Perth was granted 2,281 acres near the ocean (seafrontage, 3 miles), which became known as the Endowment Lands.


Perth City Council bought the Limekilns Estate (then about 1,290 acres) for £18,000. At this time the Council recommended that a park, incorporating Reabold Hill and nearby land, be set aside, and pines were planted in the area as a park feature.


The Endowment Lands, Limekilns Estate and a Beach Reserve were included within the boundaries of the then Perth City Council.


Perry House was built for the caretaker of the Endowment Lands, built in part with materials taken from Joseph Perry’s original cottage.


The beginning of development of the area (housing, etc).


The Perth City Council stated that 'a park of 1,000 acres in extent be set apart for the people of Perth forever between Floreat Park and City Beach Estate.' Bold Park was named after Ernest William Bold, the longest serving Town Clerk (1901-1944). Reabold Hill was named for the Perth Mayor Francis RI Rea and William Bold.


During the 1950s and 60s Bold Park became surrounded by suburban development with new housing, schools and roads.


Walking along trails within Bold Park became a popular activity in the 1970s and 1980s.


The Environmental Protection Authority, in its comprehensive System 6 Study, recommended that Bold Park and adjacent bushland be preserved because of its high conservation, recreation and education value.


The Friends of Bold Park Bushland Inc. formed as a community lobby group to oppose plans to urbanise some of the area and to have the park boundaries extended to reflect the System 6 recommendations.


The City of Perth area was divided and three new local government authorities were established. Bold Park was placed within the Town of Cambridge.


The Court Government, together with the Town of Cambridge, announced its intention to create Bold Regional Park. To create the new park, the Town of Cambridge would gift freehold land comprising the total area of Bold Park to the State Government, so it could be developed as a park for all Western Australians. The Town of Cambridge would also provide additional freehold land, to be sold to provide funding for the future management of the park. A further 19 hectares of private land was also included. This was known as the Knightsbridge Land and was purchased for $3.675 million in 1993 by the Western Australian Planning Commission for regional parks and recreation purposes using funds generated by from the Metropolitan Region Improvement Tax.

At the time of the announcement, the Hon Premier Richard Court said that Bold Regional Park would have a total area of 465 hectares - bigger than Kings Park - and would be listed as an ‘A' Class Reserve. It would be managed by the Kings Park Board.


On 5 March, the Hon Premier Richard Court announced that negotiations for placing Bold Park under the control of the Kings Park Board were complete. On 15 August, Bold Park (437 hectares, 1079 acres) was formally handed over from the Town of Cambridge to the State Government for management by the Kings Park Board. The State Government announced that both Kings Park and Bold Park would, under new legislation, be managed by the Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority, which replaced the Kings Park Board.


The Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority Act 1998 was proclaimed 1 July 1999, replacing the Kings Park Board with the new Authority. The BGPA took formal control, care and management of Kings Park and Botanic Garden and Bold Park from this date on. Kings Park Director, Dr Stephen Hopper, became the first Chief Executive Officer of the Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority.


After extensive public consultation and review, the inaugural Bold Park Environmental Management Plan 2000-2005 was released. Planning for the document was unique in that three levels of Government (local Town of Cambridge, state Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority, federal Department of Defence) worked in partnership to develop complementary plans for Perry Lakes Reserve, Bold Park and Campbell Barracks respectively.


On 30 October 2001, the Camel Lake Heritage Trail was officially launched. The trail was established as a joint project with Birds Australia, Wildflower Society, Friends of Bold Park Bushland and the Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority with funds received from a Centenary of Federation grant.


The Western Australian Ecology Centre was officially opened on 24 August 2004.


Dr Stephen Hopper resigned as the BGPA’s Chief Executive Officer on 30 June to and Mark Webb was appointed Chief Executive Officer on 23 November.


A full flora species census of Bold Park was conducted leading to the publication Perth Plants which catalogues the plants of Bold and Kings Park Bushland.


The Reabold Hill Boardwalk and Lookout was completed with a raised entry statement, boardwalk, new lookout and interpretive signage. It was officially opened on 11 May 2005.


The Minister for the Environment; Racing and Gaming, Hon Mark McGowan, officially launched the Bold Park Management Plan for 2006-2011 at Reabold Hill on Saturday, 27 May 2006.


The Friends of Bold Park Bushland celebrated their 20th anniversary with an Open Day at Bold Park included as part the annual Kings Park Festival activities.


The Friends of Bold Park Bushland Guides were established and the first guided walks commenced in July.


The Bold Park Management Plan 2011–2016 was approved and endorsed by the Hon Bill Marmion MLC, Minister for Environment; Water.


2011 marks 25 years of vertebrate ground surveys in Bold Park by Adjunct Professor Ric How.


Visitor Access from Perry Lakes Drive was formalised with the upgrade of Tuart and Camel Lake carparks.


Decadal flora survey revisited providing a snapshot of the bushland, showing changes since 2004 and informing the management of biodiversity.


The Bold Park Management Plan 2016–2021 was approved and endorsed by the Hon Albert Jacob, Minister for Environment; Heritage.


The first research fire is implemented in Bold Park on the 24 April 2016 as part of a Fire Ecology Restoration Project


The Friends of Bold Park Bushland celebrate their 30th anniversary with an Open Day at Bold Park.

Visitor reminder

All cyclists and motorists are required to abide by the Road Traffic Code 2000 and must adhere to signage and directions by the Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority.

Naturescape closed 2017

Rio Tinto Naturescape Kings Park will be closed from Wednesday 1 February for the Stage 2 development during 2017.

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Congratulations Batonbearers!

We are delighted to share the news that Dr Tony Scalzo, a dedicated Kings Park volunteer, has been announced as a Batonbearer for the Kings Park section of the upcoming Queen’s Baton Relay (QBR) during the 100 day countdown to the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (GC2018).

Master Gardeners turn 20!

Kings Park and Botanic Garden warmly congratulate and thank the Kings Park Volunteer Master Gardeners as they celebrate their 20th anniversary in October 2017.

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