Fremantle Prison Main Cell Block

Western Australia
Conservation and Interpretation

Architectural and expert heritage advice.

Western Australian Architecture Awards
Winner - Award for Heritage - 2011

Numerous stages of the cellblock’s development were revealed, from its beginnings in 1855 to the prison’s closure in 1991.

The project reveals different layers of history. Uncovering of stone flag floors, removal of paint from stone walls to reveal construction techniques, and increased visibility to former openings allowed for a more complex experience of the history of the place.

This project developed from a deep understanding of the four cell block divisions. Documentary evidence, and physical investigations guided the process.

This project built on an earlier project that reconstructed a number of cells to interpret the evolution of convict establishment and prison accommodation through the 139 year history.

Fremantle Prison was built to accommodate Imperial Convicts between 1853 and 1855. It became the State’s maximum security prison in 1888 until its closure in 1991.

Since its closure it has been a tourist site and was granted World Heritage status in 2010.