Home of All Things Polish in Brisbane: Polonia, The Polish Club in Milton

Did you know that the Polish Club Milton is one of the oldest ethnic clubs still in operation in Queensland? Fondly called “Polonia,” it is the home of all things Polish in Brisbane.

The Polish Club’s history in Queensland can be traced back to the early 20th century. In 1913, the first Polish organization, known as the Polish “Ognisko,” was established. Over the years, this organization evolved until it became known as the Polish Colony in 1928. 

During the post-World War II era, Poland was under the control of an oppressive Soviet regime behind the Iron Curtain. This posed numerous challenges for the Polish community in establishing a genuine sense of their homeland in a distant land. However, the Polish never abandoned hope that Poland would eventually regain its freedom and become a democratic European nation once again.

The intervention of the revered Polish Pope, St. Pope John Paul II, played a significant role in inspiring and uniting the Polish people. His leadership and steadfast support for Poland’s liberation instilled a sense of hope and determination among Poles living in Australia and New Zealand.

The Polish Club Brisbane
Photo Credit: National Library of Australia

In 1952, the Polish Colony transformed into the Polish Association of Queensland, initially located in a modest cottage at 64 Bristol Street, West End. However, the association soon outgrew its premises and relocated in 1953 to a more prominent Queenslander at 10 Marie Street in Milton. 

Polish Association in QLD
Photo Credit: National Library of Australia

The move allowed the organization to better serve the growing Polish community in Brisbane. Recognizing the need for a dedicated space, a new two-story brick clubhouse was constructed on the site in 1968. 

The Polish Club
Donors for building “The Polish House”

This building, known as “Polonia,” became the historic home of the Polish Club and has been a significant cultural hub for the Polish community in southeast Queensland for the last 70 years. The Polish Club Milton is not just a venue; it is the heart and soul of the Polish community. 

In 2023, the Polish Club in Milton is celebrating its 70th anniversary, showcasing the enduring presence and patriotism of the Polish community in the region. Despite the challenges faced by Poles living far from their homeland in Australia and New Zealand, the Polish Club has served as a vibrant representative of Polish culture and heritage.

Throughout its history, the Polish Club in Milton has remained a cherished gathering place for the Polish community, offering a taste of their homeland Down Under. It has fostered a vibrant atmosphere where Polish traditions, language, and customs have thrived, helping to preserve and promote Polish culture in Australia.

Published 5-July-2023