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Canning Bridge


Heritage Council

Place Number

There no heritage location found in the Google fusion table.


Canning Hwy over the Canning River, between Applecross and Como Applecross and Como

Location Details

Includes both bridges

Other Name(s)

Eastbound Downstream, ref 913
Westbound Upstream, ref 912

Local Government




Construction Date

Constructed from 1958, Constructed from 1937, Constructed from 1849 to 1869

Demolition Year


Statutory Heritage Listings

Type Status Date Documents More information
Heritage List Adopted 16 Jun 2020 City of Melville
Heritage List Adopted 14 Nov 2000 City of South Perth
State Register Registered 02 Mar 2012 Register Entry
Assessment Documentation

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 17 Jun 2014 Category A

Category A

Worthy of the highest level of protection: recommended for entry into the State Register of Heritage Places which gives legal protection; development requires consultation with the City of Melville. Provide maximum encouragement to the owner under the City of Melville Planning Scheme to conserve the significance of the place. Incentives to promote conservation should be considered.

City of Melville


Reports during the 1862 floods observed Canning Bridge being ‘gradually swept away’, with ‘only a portion of the centre remaining’ and the approaches completely lost.[1] However, less than three months later the bridge was reported as being ‘in a sufficient state of repair for all the purposes of ordinary traffic’.[2] In 1866, convicts were involved in repairs to both the bridge and its southern approaches.[3] Heritage documents in the 2000s claimed a replacement bridge was built by convicts in 1867, but searches of 1860s newspapers found no record of the bridge being replaced. Possibly works in 1869 to construct Upper Canning Bridge (Perth-Albany Road, Gosnells) have been confused with the Lower Canning site on the Perth-Fremantle Road.[4] Alternately, the ‘repairs’ of 1862 or 1866 may have been a complete reconstruction that was underreported. Canning Bridge was closed for some 18 months from early 1872 after a fire, rumoured to have been lit by fishermen, destroyed two central bays. The government offered £5 reward for information leading to conviction of those responsible. Winter floods caused further damage. The ‘reconstructed’ bridge reopened in 1873.[5] It is likely this ‘reconstruction’ was in later years remembered as a completely new bridge. The bridge that remained in 1892 (when a raised navigation span was added) was approximately 50ft longer than the one known to have been built in 1849,[6] supporting notions that it was not the original bridge (although, as the approaches were lost in the 1862 floods, it is possible that repairs included lengthening the bridge). As Fremantle Roads Board repeatedly invited tenders in 1872 and 1873 for the reconstruction work,[7] it is unlikely that convicts were involved.

[1] Inquirer and Commercial News, 23 July 1862, p.4,
[2] Perth Gazette and Independent Journal of Politics and News, 3 October 1862, p.3,
[3] (no author), ‘Public Works’, Inquirer and Commercial News, 4 July 1866, p.3,
[4] Perth Gazette and West Australian Times, 26 November 1869, p.2,  (re Upper Canning Bridge under construction); Trove newspaper searches completed 5 & 6 November 2018 for ‘Canning Bridge’ and ‘tenders’ between 1862 and 1889; ‘Canning Bridge’ and ‘complete OR construct OR open’ between 1862 and 1869; ‘Canning Bridge’ (articles) in 1867; ‘Canning Bridge’ and ‘Public Works’ in 1868 (searching 163 WA newspapers)
Report of recent and current public works in August 1867 mentions 40 bridges and does not include Canning Bridge (‘Public Works in the Colony’, Inquirer and Commercial News, 28 August 1867, p.2,; Similar reports a year later 1868 also fail to mention any bridge on the Canning River or Perth-Fremantle Road Perth Gazette and West Australian Times, 14 August 1868, p.3,
HCWA’s documentation for P16178 references the construction of a bridge in 1867 to a conference speech give in 2002 by Lloyd Margetts, engineer, of MRWA’s bridge section; South Perth Municipal Inventory place entry for the place (CB7) also references work by Margetts; Engineers Australia documents include direct input from Margetts, which is unreferenced (Engineers Australia WA Division Engineering Heritage Panel, Swan & Canning Rivers Bridges: Australian Engineering Week Tour 2012, Perth, July 2012,
[5] Kuon, ‘Percursory Papers’, Herald, 6 April 1872, p.3,; ‘£5 Reward’ (advertisement), Herald, 25 May 1872, p.1,; (no author), ‘Roads Boards: Fremantle’, Inquirer and Commercial News, 12 February 1873, p.4,; Fremantle Roads Board, ‘Notice to the Public’, Inquirer and Commercial News, 23 July 1873, p.2, (quote ‘re-constructed’); Herald, 26 July 1873, p.3,; 
[6] HCWA, P16178 Canning Bridge, Assessment Documentation, March 2012, p.5
[7] Eg Herald, 3 November 1872, p.2,; (no author), ‘Roads Boards: Fremantle’, Inquirer and Commercial News, 4 December 1872, p.3,

Place Type

Historic site


Epoch General Specific
Present Use Transport\Communications Road: Bridge
Original Use Transport\Communications Road: Bridge

Architectural Styles

Other Style

Construction Materials

Type General Specific
Other METAL Steel
Other TIMBER Other Timber

Historic Themes

General Specific

Creation Date

29 Nov 2005

Publish place record online (inHerit):


Last Update

23 Jul 2021


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.