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Rockwell Agricultural Hall

Author

Shire of Katanning

Place Number

01364
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Location

500m NW of Gidgelbarrup Tank Rockwell via Katanning

Location Details

Other Name(s)

Rockwell School

Local Government

Katanning

Region

Great Southern

Construction Date

Constructed from 1907

Demolition Year

N/A

Statutory Heritage Listings

Type Status Date Documents More information
(no listings)

Other Heritage Listings and Surveys

Type Status Date Grading/Management More information
Category Description
Municipal Inventory Adopted 21 Jul 1997 Category 2

Category 2

• Of very considerable significance to the Shire of Katanning. • High level of protection appropriate.

Statement of Significance

Rockwell is one of the last remaining structures in the Badgebup community and is of high significance due to its prior uses as a school, meeting place etc.

Physical Description

Storage room added in the 1990's and was used for the storage of tennis club equipment
Engine room built in 1950's. A wooden construction with a concrete floor. This structure has been partially removed with the floor remaining.

History

In 1907 and proposed by F H Flugge and J C Warren, Rockwell Hall was built as an Agricultural Hall and also used as a schoolroom. F H Flugge and J C Warren continued to be secretary treasurer of the hall committee for 25 years.
The builder L F Kleeman whose tender was £177-10/6. Mr Charles Elliot made the bricks in Mr Flugge's paddock at a charge of 30/- per 1,000 with 25,000 to be made. Residents of the district carted water and firewood to the site where the bricks were made and burnt.
The hall was officially opened by 'Wesley Maley the Local Member of Parliament on November 20th 1907 and became the social centre of the community being utilised for dances (Red Cross Ball), concerts, wedding receptions, churches, polling booth, school, and meetings (tennis and cricket clubs), other various bodies, eg. Farmers and Settlers Association.
The Rockwell school opened on 27th April 1908 with Lillian Davenport as the teacher. Due to falling numbers of students by 1916 the school opened for only half the week sharing the teacher with Coblinine.
The school closed on 11th May 1917 not to reopen again until 19th February 1926 under the name "Coblinine East". It then closed for the last time in 1933. Students of the school planted sugar gum trees at the front of the hall.
Tennis courts and a cricket pitch were also on the site and used by the locals. Cricket started in 1909 on ground just north of the hall - pitch was made with bricks left over from the building and covered with matting for each game.
West of the hall just up the hill was the first public building in the area, a timber and iron Presbyterian Church. There is no evidence of this remaining and is assumed to have been eaten by white ants. It is expected that other denominations conducted services in the hall. A regiment of the Light Horse Brigade was formed there in 1917.
The stone Supper-Room (still standing) and a corrugated iron dressing room (no longer standing) were added in 1921 and were built by the local Flugge brothers. It was opened with a lavish fancy dress party.
As far as is known only one person has died at the hall. She was Molly Longmire (nee Flugge), living at Riverside, who collapsed and died at the farewell party in 1944 which the district were throwing for her and husband Malcolm at Rockwell.
By 1940 the community had started to decline and joined with the close by Badgebup farmers. The name of Rockwell has been continued with both the CWA Branch and the Farmers Federation Branch. They are still known as the Badgebup Rockwell members.
Current owners Nick & Cecily Richardson have since commenced alterations to the hall for residency purposes.

Condition

Good

References

Ref ID No Ref Name Ref Source Ref Date
Angus Caldwell who attend the school in 1914
Bryce Flugge who attended the school in 1925

Place Type

Individual Building or Group

Uses

Epoch General Specific
Present Use EDUCATIONAL Combined School
Original Use SOCIAL\RECREATIONAL Agricultural Hall

Construction Materials

Type General Specific
Wall STONE Local Stone
Wall BRICK Common Brick
Roof METAL Corrugated Iron

Historic Themes

General Specific
SOCIAL & CIVIC ACTIVITIES Community services & utilities

Creation Date

31 Jan 1989

Publish place record online (inHerit):

Approved

Last Update

01 Jan 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.