Redlands’ early transport history can be explored at The Rocks Crossing in Capalaba. At John Fredericks Park, just a short walk from Capalaba Regional Park via the path that goes under the busy bridge taking Old Cleveland Road across Tingalpa Creek, you can see where Redlands’ pioneers would ford across Tingalpa creek at low tide until a bridge was built in 1874. The ‘old” bridge served as the main link to the Greater Brisbane area until it was replaced by the ‘new’ bridge in 1935.
The old crossing in 1910
Exploring the historical site
Information about the area’s history
Three signs installed by the Rotary Club of Capalaba provide useful information about “The Rocks” crossing
The Rocks Crossing’s history is explained in a sign installed by Redland Shire Council next to the cobbled remnants. The information is reprinted here to make it easier to read.
This site commemorates the historical role of Capalaba in the development of Redland Shire. The cobblestones are remnants of the original road crossing of Tingalpa Creek , linking Cleveland to Brisbane. Locals referred to the crossing as “The Rocks”.
Although early travellers crossed the creek in other places, this road crossing is recorded by survey plans dated 1850 as the first road crossing of Tingalpa Creek between Capalaba and Greater Brisbane. Ever since, Capalaba has been the maingateway to the northern parts of the Redland Shire.
“The Rocks” crossing was treacherous and could only be negotiated at low tide. Early accounts of travel between the Redlands and Brisbane describe many incidents where people and vehicles were stranded on the banks of Tingalpa Creek. It was particularly hazardous for the weekly mail and passenger coach service that operated from 1867.
The first bridge across Tingalpa Creek was built in 1874. Almost immediately, the old Capalaba Hotel was replaced with a newer building that operated as a post office and hotel. A changing station for the horses used by the coach and mail services was set up in a paddock opposite the hotel.
In 1935 the bridge was replaced. Remnants of the 1874 bridge foundations can still be seen, as with the cobblestones of the original crossing.