The Perth History Association is the new custodian of the 1856-built Pensioner Guard Cottage at 1 Surrey Street, Bassendean, and the adjoining residence, built in 1893.
Previously owned by the Town of Bassendean, Perth History Association is now working in partnership with the local community to restore the houses and establish them as a local history research centre and museum.
The Bassendean Pensioner Guard Cottage remains the last Pensioner Guard cottage still standing in Perth, along with the residence added in 1893.
Standing at 1 Surrey Street, very near the river at Bassendean, is a simple, rectangular, brick, two-roomed, convict-era structure. This was one of four cottages built between 1855–57 as the Pensioner Guard Village, which was used to house members of the Enrolled Pensioners Force.
Charged with guarding convicts on the journey to and within Western Australia, the men who made up the Enrolled Pensioner Force consisted of former soldiers that had been discharged from Military Service and had received their pensions.
Two were demolished in the 1920s, and the third in the 1940s, leaving one remaining cottage, which was cared for by the Bassendean Historical Society, which furnished and opened it periodically to visitors.
The Bassendean Pensioner Guard Cottage was placed on the National Trust’s register in 1987. In 1988 it was purchased by the Town of Bassendean and, in 1994, added to the State’s Register of Heritage Places.
Constant works are required to maintain the cottages’ integrity and improve accessibility to volunteers and the community.
Current works include:
- Improving onsite facilities and amenities for our volunteers.
- Reconstruction and repair works for stability.
- Multiple projects to restore the site to its original shape and while staying true to its history.
With the work of passionate members of the community and the Perth History Association, the cottage has maintained a high level of original integrity and, apart from minor factors, remains largely unaltered.
Please consider making a donation to our heritage appeal.
All donations of $2 or more are tax deductible.