inHerit Logo

Residency Museum


City of Albany

Place Number

There no heritage location found in the Google fusion table.


Residency Rd Albany

Location Details

Local Government



Great Southern

Construction Date

Constructed from 1872, Constructed from 1854

Demolition Year


Statutory Heritage Listings

Type Status Date Documents More information
Heritage List YES 30 Dec 1983
State Register Permanent 29 Nov 1996 Register Entry
Assessment Documentation
Heritage Council

Other Heritage Listings and Surveys

Type Status Date Grading/Management More information
Category Description
Register of the National Estate Permanent 26 Oct 1980

Heritage Council
Classified by the National Trust Classified 18 Jan 1977

Heritage Council
Municipal Inventory Adopted 30 Jun 2001 Category A+

Category A+

• Already recognised at the highest level – the WA State Register of Heritage Places. Redevelopment requires consultation with the Heritage Council of WA and the City of Albany. • Provide maximum encouragement to the owner under the City of Albany Town Planning Scheme to conserve the significance of the place. • Incentives to promote heritage conservation should be considered.

Statement of Significance

The Residency Museum. An L shaped, single storeyed masonry building with a timber framed timber shingle roof,
has cultural heritage significance for the following reasons;
The place is originally associated with the convict establishment and was home to Albany's Resident Magistrates for eighty years.
The place reflects the history and development of the town.
The place has high aesthetic value and;
The place is highly valued by the local community.

Physical Description

The Residency Museum is a single storied masonry building with a timber framed, timber shingled roof. It is
located on the west side of Parade Street (Residency Road), south of the railway line. The museum is an L shaped
building with the entrance located at the north of the building and near the internal cover of the 'L'. It's brick walls are rendered externally and plastered internally. The verandahs tot he internal part of the 'L' are now enclosed and
an entry vestibule added.
The Residency Museum was originally a one room building, probably as the store for the Convict Hiring Depot.
This room is now used as an office. Within a few years, an additional room was built to the west of the original
room, and a few years after that, it appears that two more rooms were added. All four rooms have a common hipped
In 1873, additions and alterations took place to convert the building to a residence for the Government Magistrate.
The additions consisted of an 'L' shaped extension of seven rooms with a perimetre verandah. Essentially , the
internal layout has not changed but the perimeter verandahs were later enclosed.
The internal layout of the Residency Museum consists of an entry vestibule with a reception counter on the right.
The reception counter is located in a room that serves as the museum bookshop but was probably originally a formal
sitting area, judging by the French doors beyond which allow views to Princess Royal harbour. To the west of this
room is another display room, which was possibly used as a dining room, being close to the early four roomed
building which possibly could have been used as servant's quarters. To the east of the book shop is a similarly
proportioned and orientated room, which leads via what appears to be an original double opening to a corner room.
This corner room and the three rooms to the north of it are similar in size. The corner room may have been an
auxiliary reception room and the three rooms to the north were probably bedrooms. With the exception of the
bookshop room, all rooms are now used for museum display purposes. The conversion to a museum has resulted in
the fitting of modern lighting and the bricking in of fireplaces
In 1996, the building was cracking badly in a number of places; it has rising damp externally and leaks internally.
The Brig Amity is a full scale reproduction if the original timber vessel. The vessel is dry-mounted on the purpose
built wharf. Modifications to the original design were made in regard to the water supply and fire safety.

The memorial is a simple design in rough finished local granite. The area of engraving has been made smooth with
the following inscription to Major Edmund Lockyer of the 57th Regt. who landed here from the Brig AMITY on
the 26th December 1826 to found the FIRST BRITISH SETTLEMENT on the western side of Australia. Erected March 1936'.

The former police quarters are built of brick, stone and a new corrugated iron roof. The kitchen has been altered
since its original construction. The building is in good condition and forms part of the Residency Museum group of
heritage buildings. The buildings are often used as accommodation for visiting scientists and WA Museum staff on
field trips. The former stables were removed to make way for an annexe tot he Residency museum, the 'Optic'


In 1826, Major Edmund Lockyer and 24 convicts arrived at King Georges sound in the brig Amity. Lockyer was instructed to establish a military outpost of the colony of New South Wales. In 1831, following the establishment of the Swan River Colony, the former military outpost, named Fredericks Town, was placed under the control of Governor Stirling and renamed Albany. Free settlement was granted and a Government Resident, Sir Richard Spencer was appointed. Spencer lived at the former Government Farm, which is today named Strawberry Hill Farm.
Albany in common with the rest of the colony was slow to develop and readily agreed to take convicts when the decision was made to bring convicts to the Swan River colony. In 1851, a convict depot was erected on the landing site of Major Lockyer and the Amity. Between 1854 and 1856, the depot comprised of convict cells, barracks, commissariat store, an administration block and the superintendant's residence.
In 1872, the convict depot was closed and the buildings were transferred to the Western Australian Government. The barracks and store were converted, at a cost of 332 pounds, into a home for Albany's Governor Magistrate. Following Federation in 1901, the post of Government Magistrate ended and the position became that of Resident Magistrate.
Until 1953, the building was home to all Government Magistrates and Resident Magistrates in Albany. It was the centre for many civic and social functions, including balls, weddings and tea parties. With the closure of the building as a home in 1953 it become in turn a school hostel, a naval depot and training facility and sea scout headquarters operated from the building under the name TS Vancouver.
In 1970, Major Lockyer Park was developed which included the Residency Museum. The park includes buildings and features significant to the town of Albany. After renovations in 1975, the Residency Museum was opened as the first branch of the Western Australian museum outside the metropolitan area. As part of the tenth anniversary celebrations, renovations were carried out on the building. Most significantly the asbestos roof was replaced with shingles.
The building continues to operate as a branch of the Western Australian Museum.

The full-scale reproduction of the brig 'Amity' was built as a focal point for the celebrations of the sesquicentenary of white settlement in Albany. The original 'Amity' was the vessel that brought Major Lockyer and his party from Sydney in 1826 to establish a military outpost of the colony of new South Wales. The 'dry-mounted' reproduction recreates the 142 gross commercial vessel built in 1815 in St. Johns, New Brunswick, Canada.

The memorial to Edmund Lockyer was erected in 1936 for his role as the commander of the party that established the military outpost of the colony of New South Wales. The memorial is constructed from local granite. The memorial has been resited since its original construction.

The quarters were built in 1924 to house the local police officers. The building now forms part of the Residency
Museum group of heritage places.


Integrity: High




Name Type Year From Year To
Don Saunders Architect - -


Ref ID No Ref Name Ref Source Ref Date
Heritage TODAY Site visit and Assessment 1999
Heritage Council of WA Assessment for entry on Interim Basis 1996

State Heritage Office library entries

Library Id Title Medium Year Of Publication
328 Albany, Western Australia : the first hundred years, 1791-1891. Book 1992
6426 A preliminary study of convict sites in Western Australia (draft). Heritage Study {Other} 1997
9731 Great Southern strategic plan for Maritime heritage tourism. The story of the sea in the South. Report 2010
8851 Albany waterfront structure plan. Heritage report, heritage impact study. Heritage Study {Other} 2007
11358 Cast iron pillar boxes of Western Australia: An early history of the J & E Ledger foundry Book 2015

Place Type

Individual Building or Group


Epoch General Specific
Original Use GOVERNMENTAL Government Residence
Present Use EDUCATIONAL Museum

Architectural Styles

Victorian Georgian

Construction Materials

Type General Specific
Wall STONE Other Stone
Roof METAL Corrugated Iron

Historic Themes

General Specific
SOCIAL & CIVIC ACTIVITIES Government & politics

Creation Date

30 May 1989

Publish place record online (inHerit):


Last Update

31 Dec 2016


This information is provided voluntarily as a public service. The information provided is made available in good faith and is derived from sources believed to be reliable and accurate. However, the information is provided solely on the basis that readers will be responsible for making their own assessment of the matters discussed herein and are advised to verify all relevant representations, statements and information.