Corinna's Canberra: Symonston, 2609

Corinna’s Canberra: Symonston, 2609



It’s nearly the end of the year! Which means we have so far “toured” you around Canberra via our Corinna’s Canberra suburb features about 16 times!

January: Garran, Forrest
February: O’Malley
March: Hughes
April: Isaacs, Griffith
June: Narrabundah, Ainslie
July: Fyshwick, Kingston
August: Barton, Parkes
September: Russell, Acton
October: City, Turner

We continue our virtual tour of our neighbours with another suburb in the spotlight: Symonston.


Symonston is located 8 kilometres southeast of ACT’s capital city of Canberra. It is surrounded by the suburbs of Fyshwick, Narrabundah, O’Malley, and Hume.

Symonston has historically been a rural area with government industrial installations, the most prominent of which are the corrections facilities.

Let’s get to know more about Symonston, its history, its people and other facilities and features in this Corinna’s Canberra feature.

What’s In A Name

Symonston is named after Josiah Henry Symon, one of the founders of the Constitution. The suburb was gazetted on 20 September 1928.

Symonston has traditionally been a broadacre area, with lands suitable for farms practicing large-scale crop operations. With the release of the Canberra Spatial Plan, Symonston has been denoted as employment corridor to Canberra Airport and Fyshwick, which is the retail and light industry suburb of Canberra.

Street Names In The Suburb

There is no particular theme for the street names in Symonston. Streets names were a mix of well-known industrialists and chemists, Aboriginal words and tribes. Below are some of the street names in Symonston and their origin. (Source: ACT Environment and Planning Directorate place names database)

  • Edgell Place is named after Robert Edgell, founder of Edgell canned goods.
  • Faulding Street is named after chemist and surgeon Francis Faulding, founder of one of the oldest pharmaceutical companies in Australia: F.H. Faulding & Co.
  • Jerrabomberra Avenue is named after an Aboriginal word Jerrabomberra, which means ‘afraid of lightning’
  • Mugga Lane is also named after an Aboriginal word, Mugga, which means ‘diamond snake’
  • Wormald Street is named after Joseph Wormald, a native of Scotland who arrived in Australia in the 1890s and set up a factory in Sydney for manufacture and importation of fire appliances. Wormald International Ltd became a world leader in the fire protection and security industry.
  • Monaro Highway is named after an Aboriginal tribe, Monaro, who were the early settlers of the area

Who Lives In The Suburb

The 2011 Census listed Symonston as having 648 residents, with a median age of 48. Of the families in Symonston, nearly 20% were couple families with children, 58.5% were couple families without children and 19.8% were one parent families.


Top industries of employment in Symonston are Defence, accommodation, and Central Government Administration. The most common occupations in Symonston included technicians and trades workers (17.4%), labourers (16.1%), and managers (13.8%).

Features of Symonston

Symonston is home to the following government institutions:

  • Alexander Maconochie Centre
  • Periodic Detention Centre
  • Symonston Temporary Remand Centre
  • Geoscience Australia
  • Therapeutic Goods Administration

Census mentioned that Symonston’s second industry of employment is accommodation: that is because the suburb has three caravan parks: Canberra South Motor Park, Sundown Village and Narrabundah Longstay Caravan Park

Symonston is also home to one of Canberra’s historic sites, the Mugga Mugga Cottage. Located at 8 Narrabundah Lane, the cottage stands as a testament to the lives of the families who worked on one of the great pastoral estates of the Limestone Plains.

Built in the 1830s for the head shepherd of Duntroon (Robert Campbell’s Estate), the cottage has been conserved and furnished with household items that belonged to the Curley family who moved to Mugga-Mugga from Duntroon in 1913. (

Corinna Dental’s Brindabella practice is around 10 kilometres away via Monaro Highway.