Transport Canberra and City Services

City Services

Canberra Carousel Organ

The video transcript (there is no sound just the captions):
  • The Canberra Carousel Organ is an iconic piece of Canberra’s history and is available for hire.

Canberra Carousel Organ
Hire a piece of Canberra's history
How can I get involved?

Canberra Carousel Organ

The Canberra Carousel Organ is an iconic piece of Canberra's history. The 69 keyless fairground organ was built in 1911 and originally operated as part of the merry-go-round which now resides on City Walk in Civic.

The organ and merry-go-round were purchased for the people of Canberra in 1973. Since then, volunteers at the Carousel Organ Restoration Group have undertaken rebuilding and refurbishment of the instrument through heritage grants.

In 2013, the restoration works were complete and the organ was formally handed back to the ACT Government from the volunteers in 2014.

Hire a piece of Canberra's history

People now have the unique option to hire the Canberra Carousel Organ to play at events around Canberra. To book the organ for your event, please allow at least three weeks’ notice prior to the event.

To hire the organ please contact the Parks and Territory Services Project Coordination Officer via Access Canberra on 13 22 81.

Pricing Structure

The price structure for hire of the organ is detailed in the table below.

Item Half day
4 hours
Full day
8 hours

Hire of organ by community organisation or charity group



Hire of the organ by a business $400 $600

Provision of backup generator (15 amp) where applicable



Booking Policy

A deposit of 10% of the quoted hire fee will be required at time of booking. This deposit is not refundable for cancellations with less than three weeks' notice. In instances where the organ cannot play (e.g. because of unsuitable weather conditions), a full refund will be provided.

What you need to know if you want to play it at an event?

  • there must be volunteers available on the day to operate the organ (this will be organised through TCCS)
  • there must be the ability for the towing vehicle which pulls the organ to manoeuvre around the site
  • the ground should be fairly flat and hard for the trailer to be parked on
  • there must be access to power or a generator (15 amp)
  • there should be a barrier around the organ (to stop people touching the mechanisms)
  • surrounding buildings should be made aware that the organ is reasonably loud
  • there shouldn't be another loud source of music nearby competing with the organ
  • there should be risk assessment done and hazards should be pointed out to the volunteers
  • there should be seating available for the volunteers
  • there should be a first aid kit on site
  • there should be nearby parking available for volunteers
  • the organ can play for approximately 1.5 hours without repeating music. Ideally, the organ should only play for a maximum of 3 hours at a time.
  • the weather conditions must be right (it cannot play in the rain)
  • booking the organ requires three weeks' notice prior to the event.

How can I get involved?

Volunteering allows you to learn about the operation and maintenance of this historic instrument. You will be given the opportunity to assist at performances and with general maintenance.

To register to become a volunteer, please contact the Parks and Territory Services Project Coordination Officer via Access Canberra on 13 22 81.

The ACT Government is committed to improving the accessibility of web content. To provide feedback or request an accessible version of a document please contact us or phone 13 22 81.

We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the ACT, the Ngunnawal people. We acknowledge and respect their continuing culture and the contribution they make to the life of this city and this region.

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