Rheem Drum Manufacturing Plant

Bulimba Barrel Plant

Factory site/industry
Brisbane City

Addison Ave and Ferry Lane, Bulimba 4171

As a result of the war effort there was a massive requirement for steel drums of all types for military and civilian uses. This appears to have been a rare project where much needed production facilities for a commercial company were constructed by government.


At the request of the Commonwealth’s Department of Supply and Shipping, the Allied Works Council let contracts for the construction of a drum manufacturing plant to be operated by Rheem. It was apparently known as the Bulimba Barrel Plant.

The plant was built on reclaimed land along the riverbank at Hawthorne. The plant included its own electricity sub-station and water supply. The substantial factory was of steel-framed, brick construction, with concrete floors. It had an administration building and a stores building as well as a cafeteria, mess and change rooms.


NAA: BP262/2, 9178, Joint Parliamentary War Expenditure Advisory Committee visit to Queensland and Northern Territory, barcode 1830009