Guildford Things to Do

  • Guildford visitor centre
    Guildford visitor centre
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  • Old courthouse
    Old courthouse
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    Taylor's Cottage
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Most Recent Things to Do in Guildford

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    THE HOWITZER GUN IN STIRLING PARK

    by balhannah Written Apr 7, 2015

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    In 1921, Guildford received a war trophy - A howitzer gun, captured at Hamel, France.
    Unfortunately, this isn't the one I viewed, as it was melted down for the war effort in 1944. In 1960, two 25 pounder Howitzers took the place of the old. As the pair have been regularly maintained and restored, they are still standing at the entrance to Stirling park.
    Next to them is the Guildford war memorial.

    Howitzer Stirling Park
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    WALK HISTORIC JAMES STREET

    by balhannah Updated Apr 7, 2015

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    James street is the main street of Guildford and one where I found historic shops and other buildings.

    One Hotel I had seen a photo of, was in the process of being renovated after major fire damage from 2008.. This was the Guildford Hotel from 1886. I hope when finished, it still will have its interesting turret.

    A building that took up a fair amount of space, was the Village Markets building from 1905. It now has a second-hand shop, fashion shop and a good Bakery in the building.

    Tindale House from 1895 was quite attractive and is now a Restaurant.

    Have you heard of a "Apothecaries Hall?" I hadn't. Well, there is one here in James Street that dates back to 1894. Apothecary is a historical name for a medical professionals, like chemists or a dispensing chemists who offer general medical advice and a range of services. As a profession, it's thought to date back to 2600 BC

    I found many selling old wares and many more than I have listed here.

    James Street, Guildford James Street, Guildford James Street, Guildford James Street, Guildford James Street, Guildford
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    MECHANICS INSTITUTE

    by balhannah Updated Apr 7, 2015

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    The Mechanics Institute, built in 1865, is classified by the National Trust. It's a hall, but to me, it looked more like a Church. This one, was the first built in the Swan River Colony, originally built to improve the education of the local tradesmen, although the hall was used as a place where concerts and other meetings and forms of entertainment could be held. Even though it was for the working class, no ex-convicts were allowed and all the top positions (such as President and Vice Presidents) were generally filled by upper-class people.
    Mechanics Institutes were found in most towns as it was here men could come and get education, particularly in technical subjects.
    It's now the headquarters of the Swan-Guildford Historical Society

    OPEN on Sundays from 2.00 p.m. - 5.00 p.m.

    Mechanics Institute Mechanics Institute
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    ST. MATTHEW'S CHURCH

    by balhannah Written Apr 7, 2015

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    Also located in Stirling square, is St. Matthew's Anglican Church. Unfortunately, it was like most Australian churches and not open for me to see the interior! It's a shame most Australian Churches are like this!
    The first church built in the Swan Parish, had mud-brick walls, wooden shingle roof and was situated on land donated by Governor James Stirling, hence Stirling Park. It wasn't named St. Matthews back then.
    The Church I saw, was not the first, nor the second St Matthew’s Church from 1860 which was destroyed, but the third from 1873.

    St Matthews became the only garrison church in Western Australia.
    The 8th Field Battery of the 3rd Australian Field Artillery Brigade, based at Guildford were among the first to see action at Gallipoli in 1915. The men who came as re-enforcements for the 8th Field Battery, made St. Matthew's Church their spiritual home.
    The North transept of St, Matthews Church is the Soldiers Memorial Chapel.

    Beside St. Matthews is the Church Hall and the Remembrance garden, planted with roses in specially chosen colours. "White Roses for purity, pink for remembrance, yellow for the physical absence of loved ones, peach for reflection, and red for love and the essence of the Holy Spirit."

    St. Matthew's Church St. Matthew's Church
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    GUILDFORD MEMORIAL GATES

    by balhannah Updated Apr 7, 2015

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    Some old gates I saw had a commemorative tablet attached and one of the historical signs nearby. I read the sign and found out these gates were made and dedicated to the memory of gunners and cavalrymen who trained at Guildford Camp during WW I.

    Every year since 1929, "Gunners Day" has remembered these Soldiers. On the day, there is a parade which marches to St Matthew`s Church where a memorial service is conducted. Inside St. Mathew's Church, is a "Battery Banner," a silk ensign the gunners took with them in 1915. The flag was flown where the Aussies were stationed in Egypt, Gallipoli and France, before returning to St. Matthew's Church, Guildford for safe keeping.

    Gunner's Day is held on the nearest Sunday to the 8th August.

    These are not the only historic gates in Stirling Park. The other gates are the wooden "Talbot Hobbs" Memorial Gates, "dedicated to the memory of Lt. General Sir Joseph Hobbs and the Artillery men who served under him."

    These are fairly new as they were unveiled in 2013 on the 85th Gunner's Day which celebrated the centenary of the Artillery establishing their headquarters in Guildford.
    The gates were made in a 1930's design, just like the ones Hobbs had as his front driveway gate.

    Memorial gates Hobb's gate
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    OLD GUILDFORD POST OFFICE

    by balhannah Updated Apr 7, 2015

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    The Old Guildford Post Office is one of the most prominent landmarks in town. It's a very nicely painted Victorian Italianate building that was built in 1897, not only for the mail, but for the Post-master and his family to live. Why the date is later than other buildings in Guildford, is because the 1st Post office was in an Inn, the 2nd P.O. was in a store, then they built this Post Office. Mail used to come by boat on the Swan River. The building has a clock tower added in 1901, which included a bell that tolled every hour on the hour.

    It no longer is used as a Post Office, instead it is an Antique shop where you can wander around and look at four rooms with all types of Dutch and Javanese colonial artefacts, furniture and more.

    OPEN 9:00 am - 5:00 pm

    Guildford Post Office
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    ROSE & CROWN HOTEL

    by balhannah Written Apr 7, 2015

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    The Rose and Crown Inn - Oldest Hotel in Western Australia and 3rd oldest licensed Hotel in Australia.

    The Hotel dates to 1841, when it was built in Georgian style as a licensed Inn. As with other buildings I saw in WA, this too was built from local, hand-made bricks laid in a Flemish bond. Originally covered in wooden shingles, today it has a corrugated iron roof.

    I found it interesting, that in the early days, there was a tunnel from the main cellar to the nearby Swan River. This is quite a distance to dig a tunnel and I wondered why. Was there a worry of being robbed whilst moving goods to the Hotel - was that the reason for the tunnel? By using a tunnel, the stores could be safely moved from River barges into the building.
    Huge English Redwood beams support part of the hotel floor, as well as a section of the restaurant. If you have never seen hand made nails, then take a look at the nails used in these beams.
    Behind the Hotel are stables from 1880 which was used as accommodation for the Camels and single men. Now it is modern accommodation!

    Being such an old Hotel, it has to have a ghost!
    Do the spirits of convicts and former publicans roam the corridors and cellar of the main Rose & Crown building? .

    Check out the website for accommodation and Meals.

    Rose & Crown Hotel
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    BARKER'S STORE - (CHATEAU GUILDFORD LIQUOR STORE)

    by balhannah Written Apr 6, 2015

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    Barker's Store dates back to 1854, when as a "Bond Store," it did a roaring trade. Bond store means it stored “bonded” goods (whisky & rum) which came by barge up the Swan River from Fremantle. A "bond/excise" had to paid to the colonial government. No wonder it was a thriving business! It is believed to be only one of two historical buildings in WA that is still being used for the same thing!
    It was also a licensed magazine for the storage of explosives.

    Today, it is the Chateau Guildford Liquor store which has a good collection of premium local wine.
    The Bond Store building has 3 levels. It has an underground cellar with very thick walls enabling cool and stable temperatures for the storage of wine. The ground floor is where you can buy some wine and the upper floor is for wine tastings and functions.

    OPENING HOURS
    Mon - Sat 8.30 AM - 8.30 PM
    Sun & Public Holidays 12 Noon - 6 PM
    Closed Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year's Day, Good Friday

    Chateau Guildford Liquor store Chateau Guildford Liquor store
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    THE OLD GAOL

    by balhannah Updated Apr 6, 2015

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    Next to the Courthouse (Info centre) is the Colonial Gaol.
    The Gaol was constructed in four stages using convict labour, beginning in 1841 when a small building was constructed, consisting of two cells, a constable’s room and stocks. Additions were made 1851,1853 and 1867. In those days it was both the gaol and the courthouse, I guess that cut out the "middleman" - just a short walk and you were put into your cell!

    It was a local government resident that requested a gaol to be built, the reason - three Hotels caused too much trouble in the town, so a lock-up was needed!
    The gaol is a museum run by the Swan–Guildford Historical Society that I went to see.

    A short walk along Meadow street towards the railway line, any you will see an old house that sells Pottery. This house was built in 1870 for the Policeman to live.

    Guildford Old Gaol Guildford Old Gaol Guildford Old Gaol
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    HISTORICAL MUSEUM

    by balhannah Updated Apr 6, 2015

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    The Guildford Historical Society has a Museum next to the Info centre.
    I am not sure if you have to do a tour or not. When I walked in, one of the volunteers was eager to show me around, so I was taken on a tour which was interesting, but time consuming!

    The Colonial Gaol built by convict labour, is where the majority of historical items are displayed.

    I thought the Museum collection was quite good as I found some new historical items not found in other museums. I had never seen a multiple iron heating stove, used by Tailors, professional laundries and large house-holds. The servants used these in the 1880's. There was much more to see from life in the colonial days of Australia around Guildford. Outdoor implements and quite a good collection of saddles, stirrups and spurs.

    Opening Times
    Colonial Gaol and Taylor’s Cottage
    Wednesday 9.30am to 2.30pm
    Friday 9.30am to 2.30pm
    Saturday 9am – 12.30pm

    Admission: $4 donation for adults. Children under 12 are free.

    Bain-Marie Thunderbox (Toilet)
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    GARDEN HILL & ST. CHARLES SEMINARY

    by balhannah Written Apr 6, 2015

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    I am still on Meadow street, but now heading towards the Swan River on the "River Ramble" trail.
    I must say I was quite surprised to come across the St. Charles Seminary grand buildings!

    Originally this was farmland, then in 1837 was bought by Alfred Waylen who left it to his son Dr Alfred Waylen (Jr). He planted vineyards at 'Garden Hill' and was pioneer in the Swan Valley wine industry.

    In 1941, ‘Garden Hill’ was purchased by the Catholic Archbishop of Perth for use as a seminary.
    Already on Garden Hill, was the large bungalow style house with verandahs on three sides. The house consists of 13 large rooms and has a detached servants wing with a combined ballroom and billiard room,. Stables which are now used as a garage, a boathouse on the river, tennis courts, playing areas, orchard and vineyard.
    It did close for a while, but re-opened in late 1993. Later, more buildings were added as living quarters for seminarians and priests. These days, students live on-site while completing most of their study at Notre Dame University in Fremantle. Since 1942 more than 400 men have passed through St. Charles seminary. Over 160 became ordained priests and 5 archbishops or bishops.

    At the entrance is the Seminary’s coat of arms which includes part of the coat of arms of St Charles Borromeo, five silver stars representing the Southern Cross and Swan with it rising wings representing the State of Western Australia.

    The motto is ‘Discite a Me’, latin for ‘Learn from Me.’

    St. Charles Seminary St. Charles Seminary St. Charles Seminary coat of arms
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    HISTORIC HOMES IN SWAN STREET

    by balhannah Written Apr 5, 2015

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    Further along Swan Street are some cottages and old buildings that have been restored, painted and look really good! They are privately owned, so can only be viewed from the outside.

    In-front of them, is signage telling of their historical importance. One is known as "the two storey house." It was built in colonial Georgian style around 1870, the exact date is not known. As it is situated in Swan Street, a few steps away from Riversleigh house, it's believed the owners would have been wealthy and well-to-do people.
    This is one of the last houses of this type remaining in Guildford.

    Two -storey house Two -storey house
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    CROSSLAND'S HOUSE / RIVERSLEIGH

    by balhannah Written Apr 5, 2015

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    This old home, or Mansion I would call it, is known by both names.
    Looking at this beautiful home, I could see this would have once belonged to a wealthy family.
    As it happened, it was!
    Charles Morton Crossland, a surveyor and land agent in Perth, married Margaret Lefroy, one of Western Australia's earliest settlers, built this home at the time of the gold rush when plenty of money was around. In 1896, this large brick house was built in Art Nouveau style, complete with cellar and servants quarters and with a turret. Guildford was the fashionable place to live at the time.
    The home is surrounded by lawn and garden, with a picket fence along the boundary.

    Privately owned and not open to the public.

    Riversleigh Riversleigh
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    TAYLOR'S COTTAGE

    by balhannah Written Apr 5, 2015

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    Located on the grounds of the Guildford Historical Society, is the 1860's workman’s cottage that the Taylor family lived in. Mr. Taylor was an ex-convict, who married and brought up 13 children in the cottage, how-ever, at the most there were only 9 in the cottage at any given time. As it was so small, some of the family had to sleep under the verandah. Hanging under the verandah, was the modern day refrigerator, (meat safe), outside was the bathroom (bowl and Jug) the washing machine (tub and scrubbing board) and a modern Thunderbox (Toilet).

    It was interesting being shown around here by the guide and hearing the story of the Taylor family.

    OPENING HOURS
    WEDNESDAY, FRIDAY 9:30AM - 2:30PM
    SATURDAY 9AM - 12:30PM

    Taylor's Cottage Taylor's Cottage painting Taylor's Cottage Kitchen Taylor's cottage Laundry Taylor's cottage bathroom
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    FOUR HERITAGE WALKING TRAILS

    by balhannah Written Apr 5, 2015

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    I love towns that have heritage walks with maps to follow and signage on every place listed!

    The Guildford heritage trails are colour coded as some cross over another trail. Do as much or as little walking as you want!

    THE CAPTAIN STIRLING WALK is the longest - 2.25kms long, estimated time 75mins.
    We pass by the Rose & Crown Hotel, Chapel, Showgrounds, Cemetery, Woodbridge house, workers cottages and more.

    THE TOWN WALK is 1.8kms, approx. 1 hour to complete. As it says, it is around the town!

    THE RIVER RAMBLE is 1.5km and takes around the same time. This walk heads to the River, past a warehouse, to Moulton's landing, Barker bridge and more.

    THE STIRLING SQUARE CIRCUIT is only 450metres, takes 20mins as it takes in the best of the town centre.

    The website has the maps of the walks.

    I began at the Visitor centre courthouse and went next door to the Historical centre museum.

    Old courthouse
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