Freelance writer living on Brisbane's north side. Studied creative industries - currently studying library and information services.
Published September 7th 2012
John Oxley Reserve is a hidden treasure. Off Dohles Rocks Road, behind the local shops and vast sporting grounds is where you'll find it; tucked right into the corner of Ogg Road, Murrumba Downs. John Oxley Reserve is right next door to the Rainbow Therapies Natural Healing Centre and encompasses the John Forester and Graham 'Boy' Cogill Ovals, the John Oxley Reserve Community Centre and Yvonne Barlow Park.
John Oxley Reserve is a great place for the whole family. It boasts a good-sized playground, completely shaded by the foliage of huge trees, barbeque facilities, gazebo-style dining, a toilet block, ample car parking, no less than five different sized sports fields and a 1.3km nature reserve walk. The community centre can be hired out for special occasions and features a small hall and furnished kitchen.
Need a new venue for your next family barbeque? John Oxley Reserve has space enough for all. Take advantage of the barbeque facilities (homemade hamburgers, mmm) and gazebo-style seating, or pack a picnic and blankets and relax in the shade. Football, soccer, and cricket – the grounds at John Oxley Reserve can handle it all so that you can play some friendly games on the field before you sit down to eat.
The playground at John Oxley Reserve isn't fenced but is directly in front of the barbeque and seating area, close to parking and the toilet block, so that parents can keep an eye out for their little ones while chatting and cooking in the shade. The playground features swings, slides, seesaws, climbing frames, forts, bouncing and spinning rides. There is also a thin layer of sand beneath the playground's main equipment.
The John Oxley Reserve nature walk is a 1.3km downhill trek to the North Pine River. Of course, this means that the return trek is uphill. Bring a water bottle, wear comfortable shoes, spray on the trusty insect repellent and you'll be good to go. John Oxley Reserve covers 11 hectares of diverse multiple ecosystems, is home to 242 bird species, 13 mammal species, eight reptile species and eight amphibian species (Moreton Bay Regional Council).
John Oxley Reserve was named after the NSW Surveyor General, John Oxley, who in 1823 discovered the North Pine River (first dubbed the Deception River as it was mistaken for being the Brisbane River) and the areas now known as John Oxley Reserve and Sweeney Reserve. John Oxley was searching for a new penal colony site.
Murrumba Downs is approximately 25kms north of Brisbane city and is easily accessed by following the Bruce Highway.