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Blast from the past at Warders’ Cottages

Nov 16, 2016
Image of guests at the Warders' Cottages eventImage of Warders' Cottages eventImage of Warders' Cottages event
  • Sale of Warders’ Cottages bring together ex-prison warders and their families
  • Three generations of Taylor family return to ‘show cottage’ where they lived in 1960s
  • Rare opportunity to buy a unique piece of WA convict history

The offer for sale of the Warders’ Cottages in the heart of Fremantle has brought together
old neighbours from the Warders’ Cottages.

At an informal gathering at a fully fitted out ‘show cottage’ this morning, Heritage Council Chair Anne Arnold and State Heritage Office Executive Director Graeme Gammie welcomed ex-prison officers and their families who used to live in the three terraces of Warders’ Cottages.

“The Warders’ Cottages were built in 1851 to house Fremantle Prison warders and their families,” Mr Gammie said.

“Right until the Prison was decommissioned in 1991, the cottages continued to serve their original function.”

Among the guests were renowned ex-South Fremantle footballer, John Gerovich, and also three generations of the Taylor family who lived in the ‘show cottage’ in the last 1960s.

Between 1991 and 2011, the cottages were used as public housing until the Housing Authority determined that that the cottages were no longer suitable for its tenants.

“In 2014, the Government committed to a heritage revolving fund to reactivate publicly-owned heritage buildings to ensure they have a viable future,” Mr Gammie said.

A significant amount of conservation and restoration work has been undertaken across the 15 cottages to reinstate their structural integrity and restore some original detail.

“The cottages are now ready for sale and this presents a rare opportunity to buy a unique heritage asset, with new owners understanding that they will be the next generation custodians of a part of Western Australia’s convict history,” Mr Gammie said.

“It will also be exciting to see how the re-occupation of the cottages revitalise an area in the heart of Fremantle.”

Offers for the cottages can be made until 9 December 2016 via expressions of interest through selling agent Colliers International. More information is available at or

View an image gallery of the Warders' Cottages, Fremantle, and find out about the Expressions of Interest process.

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