Kedron, a residential suburb on Gympie Road and immediately north of Lutwyche and Gordon Park, is eight km north of central Brisbane. It is separated from Kedron Brook by Gordon Park.
Kedron Brook, with headwaters in Ferny Grove, is a significant watercourse that enters a wetland at Toombul near the airport. It was there in 1838 that German Moravian missionaries formed a settlement for the protection of Aborigines, and named the watercourse after the Biblical Kedron River.
In 1856 farm lots along Kedron Book were surveyed, and two of them near Gympie Road were purchased by Judge Alfred Lutwyche in 1859. Now the site of Kedron High School and an emergency services complex, Lutwyche named his estate Kedron Lodge. Lutwyche donated land to the south (now in Wooloowin) for St Andrew's Anglican church (1866). Population was scattered, but Gympie Road was a main access route. The Edinburgh Castle Hotel (c1868) was opened on Gympie Road, and Kedron Brook was bridged in the 1870s (previously crossings relied on a ford).
It was the Kedron Park Hotel (1880), however, which brought life to the district. The proprietor started horse races, polo matches and sports days on Kedron Park, apparently with the co-operation of the beneficiaries of Lutwyche's estate. The Kedron district was otherwise farms and tanneries all the way along Kedron Brook, and so intense was their activity that complaints were made about pollution of the Brook. Local government did not do much about the problem. Nundah division (1879) lost its population centre when Toombul was severed in 1883, leaving it with the rural backblocks running out to Bald Hills and Bunya.
Nundah division was named Kedron Shire in 1903 and built its offices at Chermside.
In 1911 interests involving the notorious Melbourne identity, John Wren, acquired Kedron Park as an unregistered pony track. Wren provided gambling facilities for the working class, and his name was commemorated with an oval in Mercer Park next to Kedron Brook. In addition to pony races there were an outdoor cinema and picnic gardens in Kedron Park. Patrons travelled by tram after the Lutwyche Road line was extended to Kedron Brook in 1913. The tram service stimulated settlement: Kedron Park Tramway Estate (1915) offered 120 'elevated sites' and Glen Kedron Estate (1917) cut up the land east of Leckie Road. When the tram service was again extended to Kedron Brook Cemetery (renamed Lutwyche Cemetery) in 1925, all of Kedron was subdividable. Civic amenities quickly came: a Methodist church (1925), primary school (1926), school of arts at Gympie and Broughton Roads (1928), Catholic primary school (1930) and bowling club (1934-2003). The Catholic Church also started to place a range of religious and educational facilities in Kedron by acquiring the historic Delamore House in Turner Road for the Missionary Sisters of St Francis. Kedron Shire was incorporated in Greater Brisbane in 1925.
Pony racing at Kedron Park ended in 1931 and harness racing and dog racing went until 1956. Kedron's population peaked in the 1950s, with 1800 pupils at the primary school and the Catholic Church opened girls and boys secondary schools during 1956-59; Kedron State High School opened in 1957, with an adjoining Teachers college (1961-95). Gympie Road had an active shopping centre, fed by tramlines to Kalinga (1929) and Chermside (1947). The tanneries retreated to Stafford, although not for long, and a textile mill was opened by Bruce Pie Industries on the north-western edge of Kedron, opposite the Chermside hospital, in 1949.
Kedron is a mixture of interwar and early postwar suburb. In recent years flats and apartments have been built, and in 2006 numbered 25% of total dwellings compared with 14% for Australia. Its shops in Gympie Road provide for local needs, and larger centres at Chermside and to the south in Lutwyche Road offer regional facilities.
Kedron's census populations have been:
*Between 1921 and 2006 the population adjoining Grange was counted as part of Kedron.
D.R. Teague, The history of Kedron, Stafford, Colonial Press, 1976