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Bunbury Railway Station (fmr)

Author

City of Bunbury

Place Number

00331
There no heritage location found in the Google fusion table.

Location

2 Camody Pl Bunbury

Location Details

Other Name(s)

Stn & Bus Terminal
Tourist Bureau, The Old Station, Bunbury Rlwy

Local Government

Bunbury

Region

South West

Construction Date

Constructed from 1905

Demolition Year

N/A

Statutory Heritage Listings

Type Status Date Documents More information
Heritage List Adopted 15 Apr 2003
State Register Permanent 07 Feb 1997 Register Entry
Assessment Documentation
Heritage Council

Other Heritage Listings and Surveys

Type Status Date Grading/Management More information
Category Description
Statewide Railway Heritage Surve Completed 01 Aug 1994

Heritage Council
Register of the National Estate Permanent 18 Apr 1989

Heritage Council
Classified by the National Trust Classified 07 Jun 1983

Heritage Council
Municipal Inventory Adopted 31 Jul 1996 Exceptional Significance

Exceptional Significance

Exceptional Significance

Statement of Significance

Bunbury Railway Station (fmr), a single-storey brick structure with corrugated steel roof cladding, has cultural heritage significance for the following reasons:

the place is a fine example of the Federation Free Classical style of architecture typical of railway stations of the period;

the place was and continues to be an important focus for the community;

the place contributes to the city's townscape and is an integral part of the building infrastructure constructed in Bunbury during the gold boom period; and,

the place helps demonstrate the history of the planning and development of the City of Bunbury and of the State's railway networks.

Physical Description

Bunbury Railway Station (fmr) is a single-storey brick structure with corrugated steel roof cladding comprises the main station building and detached toilet building designed in the Federation Free Classical style of architecture with strong influences of the Federation Arts and Crafts style in the detailing. It is a long single room width building with pitched roof and verandahs each side and a detached toilet building.

The following description is extracted from the Heritage Council of Western Australia's Assessment Documentation:

The place is now used as a bus terminal including a cafe and tourist bureau, the ground levels adjacent to the former platform edge having been raised to the level of the platform as part of the public garden-style landscaping of the former yards.

The building complex is principally formed by a gable ended, 16 bay shed structure, 5.450 metres wide with a ceiling height of3.950 metres, principally of one room in width, with an entry-booking hall intersecting the shed form, asymmetrically, at the seventh bay from the north end. The roof at this intersection is raised 0.600 metres, and opposed to the general ridge line, thereby producing gables in the elongated facades that signpost the position of entry to the main hall.

The elongated form is continued at the north end in the form of a detached lavatory block, formerly connected by a fenced rainwater tank yard. Similarly, at the southern end there was formerly a tank yard separating the main wing from a detached Lamp Room and Fuel Room block.

On the east side, the platform roof is supported on rafters spanning between major purlins which are in turn supported on U-shaped bent steel portals which are cantilevered out of restraining blocks within the platform floor, and which are surmounted by steel rings supporting the inner ends of the purlins. These portals are fabricated from rolled steel railway track sections and are typical of the confident engineering improvisation found within many such railway structures of the era.

Subsequent alterations include re-roofing from galvanised corrugated iron to asbestos to process-painted corrugated steel, uniform painting over of fairfaced brickwork walls and stone sills etc, demolition of 3 of 6 former chimneys and alteration of one survivor as a kitchen flue, removal of several partition cross walls and fireplaces, elimination of grade difference between platform and track levels, surrounding of verandah posts with brick armour-plinths, limited filling of verandahs with glazed weather screening at bus-boarding positions, reinstatement of former lost verandah lattice but without accompanying "capital" molds on posts, and, probably, replacement of posts from time to time.

The building materials are principally corrugated steel roof cladding, on timber trussed roof structure (with decorative flourishes in timber), on clay brick walls with cavities, and timber floors, all on concrete plinths and footings, with the internal surfaces predominantly of plain plasterwork.

The appearance and condition of the building to date is good and substantially in what must have been its original form, albeit of different colours and colour scheme.

History

Bunbury Railway Station was built in 1905 and replaced an earlier station building (1894) that was destroyed by fire.

The Perth-Bunbury Railway line was formally opened on 8 September 1893, although trains had been running for some weeks before. The ceremony was performed by the Governor, Sir W. F. C. Robinson. The track ran along side what is now Blair Street to a station and marshalling yard east of the town.

The completion of the Perth-Bunbury Railway also saw Bunbury connected to other parts of Western Australia as new lines were constructed. A government built railway between Boyanup and Bunbury was completed in March 1897 and in 1906, construction of a line between Darkan and Bunbury saw the Bunbury network connected with the Great Southern. These lines enabled the transport of timber, coal and bulky agriculture products to Bunbury, as well as bringing job opportunities and prosperity to the town and port.

For the first year after the Perth-Bunbury line was built, passengers had to alight from the train in front of the Post Office. The need for a railway station was apparent and caused much debate in Bunbury as to where it should be located. Professional engineers recommended that the station be built on the lagoon site, necessitating major drainage works. However, many still considered that this site would have potential health hazards and that Bunbury would lose one of its most striking natural features. They wanted the railway station to be built at the foot of Bury Hill on land owned by the Mayor, William Spencer.

There was a heated public meeting to decide the matter, which resulted in a tied vote (24 votes in favour of each). Mayor Spencer, who chaired the meeting, was called on to decide the matter. He chose the Bury Hill site and his supporters worked hard to get 150 names on a petition in his favour. However, the local decision was rejected by officials in Perth, and Premier Sir John Forrest told a public meeting in Bunbury on 19 October 1893 that the lagoon site had been selected on the best professional advice. He was personally amazed at opposition to the site as he believed the lagoon was an eyesore.

Atkins and Law were awarded the contract to build the station by 23 September 1894 at a cost of £10,913/4/1. The majority of the budget was used on land reclamation, though at the end of the works, much of the swamp remained.

The timber station building was opened on 14 November 1894 by Sir John Forrest. However, on 5 December 1904, the building was razed in a fire which had started in a lamp room at approximately 2am. The jarrah building was quickly engulfed in flames and the parcels office was all that could be saved.

A new, brick, station building was completed the following year. Plans were prepared by the Public Works Department under the direction of Chief Architect, George Temple Poole.

The station building comprised guards and porters rooms, offices for the permanent way staff, district superintendant, clerks, the foreman and the station master, as well as the booking hall, ticket office, parcel and luggage rooms and ladies’ waiting room. Associated structures included the lamp and fuel rooms, tank yard and gents and ladies’ latrines.

Bus services were introduced to Bunbury in the mid-1960s. On 25 May 1985, Bunbury Railway Station received train passengers for the last time. The train line was moved out of the city and a new terminal was built at Picton. Ownership of the railway station was transferred from Westrail (formerly Western Australian Government Railways) to the City of Bunbury and the building was converted into commercial premises, the Bunbury Tourist Bureau, the bus terminal and cafe.

This history is partly based on Heritage Council of Western Australia, ‘Register of Heritage Places: Bunbury Railway Station’, prepared by Ian Molyneux, 1997.

Integrity/Authenticity

Restoration of a high standard was undertaken with only minor alterations. The chimneys were removed. Some relatively modern enclosures detract from its simplicity and painted walls would not have been part of the original detailing. Although no longer used as a Railway Station, the essential character has been retained to accommodate a new role.

Condition

Good. The building is in daily use for commercial purposes and appears to be well maintained.

State Heritage Office library entries

Library Id Title Medium Year Of Publication
11554 Bunbury Railway Station (fmr) Heritage Study {Cons'n Plan} 2014
7299 Bunbury images : people and places. Book 2004

Place Type

Individual Building or Group

Uses

Epoch General Specific
Other Use COMMERCIAL Other
Present Use Transport\Communications Road: Other
Original Use Transport\Communications Rail: Railway Station

Architectural Styles

Style
Federation Free Classical

Construction Materials

Type General Specific
Roof METAL Corrugated Iron
Wall BRICK Painted Brick

Historic Themes

General Specific
TRANSPORT & COMMUNICATIONS Rail & light rail transport

Creation Date

30 May 1989

Publish place record online (inHerit):

Approved

Last Update

20 Oct 2017

Disclaimer

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.