The Leslie Wilson Home, situated at Queens Beach, Redcliffe, was opened on 7 November 1936 by the Governor of Queensland, Sir Leslie Wilson. The Home was run by a committee from the Royal Queensland Bush Children's Health Scheme and provided short term accommodation for up to 25 children from rural areas of Queensland in need of medical and dental treatments and recuperation. In 1990, the role of the Home changed from residential care to family style accommodation and respite care.
On Saturday 7 November 1936, then Governor of Queensland, Sir Leslie Wilson, opened the Leslie Wilson Home in Queens Beach, Redcliffe. The building was donated by Mr and Mrs. Huybers to the Bush Children's Health Scheme and accommodated up to 25 children from rural Queensland for month long stays to receive medical and dental care.
For some months in 1951 the committee decided to close the Home due to the polio epidemic. During its closure the building was lent to the Brisbane Children's Hospital to allow children recovering from polio to convalesce in the seaside air.
In the early 1950s the building was renovated and enlarged to accommodate up to 30 children requiring medical, dental or surgical treatment whose homes were outside a hospital area. Children typically stayed for six weeks, however some remained for longer periods of time. The Home was reopened by Sir John Lavarack, then Queensland Governor, on 18 April 1953.
Over the following decades the building was routinely extended with new wings opened in 1962 and 1971. In 1978 the adjacent property was acquired and Fison House was officially opened on 15 November 1989. From 1990, the Home no longer provided residential care for children.
The publication Royal Queensland Bush Children's Health Scheme: The Train is in. Where to now?: 75 years of caring 1935 - 2010 writes:
Redcliffe Home - Established in 1935, this is the first of the Homes. The original property was gifted by Mr Huybers at the inaugural meeting of the Scheme. By the 1950's this original accommodation was inadequate and new buildings were provided. 1962, the JC Arkell Wing was added to the Redcliffe Home which provided accommodation for 46 children including provision of speech therapy and occupational therapy services. Building changes continued. In the 1990's units for family accommodation were in use; respite care was also offered and the children were housed in family style accommodation. As the service needs changed so the staffing structure changed. When attending programs at the Home, the children attended the local state schools.
Sources used to compile this entry: '80 years of BUSHkids', in Timeline 1935-2015, BUSHkids, 2015, http://bushkids.org.au/1935timeline2015/files/assets/basic-html/page-1.html; Royal Queenland Bush Children's Health Scheme, Royal Queenland Bush Children's Health Scheme: The Train is in. Where to now?: 75 years of caring 1935 - 2010, Brisbane, 2011; Social Work Staff, Faculty of Education, University of Queensland, Directory of Social Services Queensland, University of Queensland Press, St Lucia, 1958, http://espace.library.uq.edu.au/eserv/UQ:241555/HV474_Q44D57_1958.pdf.
Prepared by: Lee Butterworth and Nicola Laurent
Created: 26 April 2013, Last modified: 10 January 2018