The original "Friends of the Old Parliament House Gardens" under the auspices of the National Capital Authority (NCA) ceased to be in 2007, owing to budgetary constraints placed on the NCA.

Months later Dr Malcolm Beazley AM from the University of Canberra, approached the Acting-Chair of the NCA, Professor Don Aitken to discuss the future of the "Friends". Time passed and  Dr Beazley sought the support of horticulturist and radio presenter,  Mrs Judy Refshauge,  to meet with the Director of the NCA, Mr Gary Rake.

The outcome from this meeting was very positive and the "Friends of the Old Parliament House Rose Gardens" was born.

One may say a rose by another name!

Once incorporated, the inaugural Annual General Meeting was held on 24 May 2010, with the following officer bearers being elected:

  • Mr Greg. Cornwell AM - President
  • Dr Malcolm Beazley AM - Vice President
  • Ms Megan Douglas - Hon. Secretary
  • Ms Svetlana Manns - Hon. Treasurer
  • Mrs Judy Refrhauge - Public Officer and Media Officer

Committee Members:

  • Ms Jane Bradhurst
  • Mr Cedric Bryant
  • Mr Graham Evans (Head Gardener, OPH Rose Gardens)
  • Mrs Lorraine Gentle.

The Patrons of the original "Friends", Mrs Tamie Fraser AO and Mr Richard Broinowski, agreed to continue their role in the new "Friends".

We aim to support and promote the gardens - as a National treasure. Their origins relied on the generosity of the Australian community and through continuous patronage, the gardens will thrive. The sense of belonging and strong associations the Canberra community in particular has with the rose gardens will be nurtured and tendered to - through the efforts of the Friends.

This website contains the wonderful history of the gardens, botanical and horticultural information, images, the stories of people associated with the gardens, and of course our friend's events.

We hope you will join us in supporting these heritage gardens by becoming members of the "Friends" and coming along to the events we organise.


We are currently looking for new ways to promote the Old Parliament House Rose Gardens and Friends.

We would like to invite you, to offer any ideas for events and activities that can be held within the gardens that would interest yourselves, family and friends.

We are looking forward to hearing your ideas and suggestions.

Please contact us via email: