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Parkerville Children's Home & Cemetery


Shire of Mundaring

Place Number

There no heritage location found in the Google fusion table.


Cnr Roland & Beacon Rds, nr Cnr Wilson Rd Parkerville

Location Details

Inc: Padbury Centre; Workshop; Trade Workshop; St Gabriels Cottage; Chapel of St Michael & All Angels; Wearne Centre; Rosemary Cottage; Blue Cottage; George Turner Cottage; Wattle Cottage; Kindergarten; Workington Hall & Director's residence. NOT INCLUDED: Narbethong, Uralla, Waminda & Baroonga

Other Name(s)

Babies / The Waifs Home
League of Charity Home for Waifs & Stray

Local Government




Construction Date

Constructed from 1903, Constructed from 1959

Demolition Year


Statutory Heritage Listings

Type Status Date Documents More information
Heritage List YES 08 Mar 2016
State Register Registered 24 Nov 2000 Register Entry
Assessment Documentation
Heritage Council

Heritage Council Decisions and Deliberations

Type Status Date Documents
(no listings)

Other Heritage Listings and Surveys

Type Status Date Grading/Management More information
Category Description
Municipal Inventory Adopted 22 Apr 1997 1 - Exceptional significance

1 - Exceptional significance

Rare or outstanding example; essential to the heritage of the locality Expectations: The place should be retained and conserved. Any alterations or extensions should reinforce the significance of the place and be in accordance with a Conservation Plan if one is in place.

Statement of Significance

The Parkerville Children's Home has very high social and historic significance for ht epeople of the Mundaring community, former residents and the State generally for it's role it has played in the care of children. The place is significant historically and socially for it;s approach to 'cottage care' for children long before it was appreciated as a better alternative than 'institutionalised' care. It also has important historic significance for it's associations with public figures of the day such as Walter Padbury, Charles Harper, JH Worthington and Sister Kate Clutterbuck.many of the buildings have high aesthetic significance which are further complimented by their setting.

Physical Description

Parkerville Children's Home is set on an undulating rural bush site with a large collection of buildings distributed around the property. These range from cottages, old school and chapel, all associated with children's the welfare, through the day to day necessities of operating the place such as the dining room, laundry, staff and management facilities. The buildings are many and varied having been built from as early as 1906, and through to the late 1970's.
The old school is now used as an administration centre, is one of the most significant buildings in the site. It is a brick building with a "U" shaped plan formed by two former classrooms at either end of a large hall or assembly space which features a large, segmented arched window. The hall is now partitioned to form several smaller office and meeting spaces; however, the partitions have been sensitively integrated with the high ceilings in a manner that would be reversible and does not interfere with the original fabric.
Several of the accommodation cottages have had or are in the process of some conservation and restoration. The weatherboard George Turner cottage, 1929, is now an education centre, and St Gabriels, 1910, is being taken back closer to it's original form with many accretions and verandah enclosures being removed to reveal the original form of the place. The cottage has a large central space with mini corrugated iron ceiling linings, boarded dados around the walls and tall double hung windows including a step through window going right to the floor. Padbury Cottage built in 1906 is the oldest and most significant of the cottages. It has recently been carefully restored closely to what would have been it's original character. Generally the work has been carried out sensitively although the choice of some materials could be questioned and there maybe some concern about possible damp problems in the front walls becoming a problem where brick paving has been replaced the timber boarded verandah. Overall Padbury Cottage sets an example for other buildings on the site which needs a conservation plan to guide future reimbursement work and adaption of the buildings. The red brick dining hall, first built in 1936, and altered in 1967, is in urgent need of repairs. It's art deco style contrasts with the older buildings on the site.


In the winter of 1903, the Parkerville Children's Home, originally known as the "Emily Ayckbowm Home for Waifs & Stray Babies", or "Waifs Home", was established on part of the present site, by the Anglican Order of the Sisters of the Church. One of the original Sisters, Sister Kate (Katharine Mary Clutterbuck), was in charge of the Home from its inception until her "retirement" in 1933, when she founded Sister Kate's Children's Home in Queens Park. The site of the Parkerville Children's Home had previously been the location of a sawmill belonging to the Sexton brothers (Site 153). The Sister's first accommodation, an old slab-sided barn, no longer exists. By early 1906, a brick cottage, financed by Guildford resident, Walter Padbury, and said to be one of the first brick buildings in the Parkerville area, was officially opened. The timber cottage "St. Nicholas", donated by Sister Kate's father, was opened on the same day. Other timber cottages at the time were "The Lodge" ( the first nursery built in 1903), "Noah's Ark" (1904), "Guildford" (1905) and "Beaconsfield". A brick school house, and dining room and kitchen were erected and a steam engine was put in to supply the Home with water. In September 1909, the original timber chapel of St Michael and All Angels was consecrated and the Home was added to the list of State orphanages.
Initially, the home survived primarily on philanthropic donations, and voluntary efforts from people such as Walter Padbury, Charles Harper, Sister Kate's father, the Guildford Anglican Minister's wife Mrs. W. Everingham, and funds from the Sisters' Anglican High School, now Perth College. Later, the efforts of J.H. Worthington, Company Secretary of Wesfarmers, were recognised when the dining hall, originally built in 1936, was refurbished in 1967 and renamed in his honour. Although modified in later years, the cottage care system instituted by the Sisters was in marked contrast to the large two storey buildings operating for the care of children elsewhere. This deliberate decision by the Sisters to raise the children in as homelike an atmosphere as possible, surrounded by an attractive, natural environment, was unusual for the time and is similar to current childcare philosophy. The numbers of children at Parkerville Children's Home increased from 22 in 1903, to approximately 109 in 1914.
A kindergarten commenced in the Easter term of 1912, in a room in "St Gabriel's " cottage. This was the same year as the first kindergarten in WA, and was claimed to be the first kindergarten in an institution in Australia. In 1913, a large room was added to "The Lodge", to make a new school with two classrooms. This school, with further additions, operated until 1949, when the children attended the separate Parkerville Village School (Site 72). When Sister Kate left Parkerville in 1933, she was replaced by two Sisters from the Anglican Community of the Sacred Advent in Brisbane. The laundry, dining hall and kitchen, were built in 1936. In 1940, control returned to the Sisters of the Church. Their residence was built in 1941.
After the Second World War, the Home operated with a Board, and a series of managers including Major Owens, Jack Wales, Bill Couche, Jim Semple and in 1978, the present Director, David Roberts. In the early 1970s, the re-introduction of the Sister's philosophies and objectives reduced the number of children in each cottage and saw the introduction of the first qualified social worker and education officer. In 1976, four brick cottages (Narbethong, Ural la, Waminda and Barooga) were built. In 1979 and 1981, two associated cottages were built in Belmont and Fremantle.
At the present, the site's most significant remaining buildings include; Padbury House (1906), St. Gabriels (c. 1910), timber cottages from the 1920's and 30's, George Turner Cottage (1929) which was donated by the Theatrical Employees Association and designed by architect Ednie-Brown, the school buildings (c. 1914), the Chapel (1909, 1922 and 1959), the dining room (1936 & 1967), Sisters Residence (1941), and trees such as large pines, marri and jarrah.
Parkerville Children's Home (Inc) operates under the auspices of the Anglican Church. It is a residential child care facility using the cottage system with appropriate social work and education support services, thereby maintaining the ideals of the founding Sisters.


Integrity: Very High, with most buildings still serving their original uses.
Modifications: Various alterations, additions and adaptions to different buildings.


very good- well maintained, some conservation work and reimbursement carried out.


Name Type Year From Year To
Ednie-Brown Turner Cottage; Architect 1929 -


Ref ID No Ref Name Ref Source Ref Date
MHHS File; "Parkerville".
D Lapham; "Parkerville Cjildren's Home: Historical Timeline". 1995
I Elliot; ibid. pp. 252, 254

State Heritage Office library entries

Library Id Title Medium Year Of Publication
7202 Echoes of the past : Sister Kate's Home revisited. Book 2002
9466 Signposts: a guide for children and young people in care in WA from 1920. Electronic 2010
4045 Parkerville Children's Home : conservation plan. Heritage Study {Cons'n Plan} 1999
8802 Sister Kate : a life dedicated to children in need of care. Book 1999

Place Type

Individual Building or Group


Epoch General Specific
Present Use RESIDENTIAL Institutional Housing
Original Use RESIDENTIAL Institutional Housing

Construction Materials

Type General Specific
Wall BRICK Common Brick
Roof METAL Corrugated Iron

Historic Themes

General Specific

Creation Date

18 Jun 1997

Publish place record online (inHerit):


Last Update

10 Feb 2017


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.