Ford House


Shire of Bridgetown-Greenbushes

Place Number



Cnr Eedle Tce & South Western Hwy Bridgetown

Location Details

The site is bound by Eedle Terrace to the north, the South West Highway to the east, Blackwood River to the south and an adjacent rural property to the west. Part of NT Blackwood River Crossing & First Settlers Precinct

Local Government



South West

Construction Date

Constructed from 1896

Demolition Year


Statutory Heritage Listings

Type Status Date Documents
Heritage List Adopted 28 Nov 2019

Heritage Council Decisions and Deliberations

Type Status Date Documents
RHP - To be assessed Current 25 May 2007

Other Heritage Listings and Surveys

Type Status Date Grading/Management
Municipal Inventory Adopted 28 Jun 2001 Category 1
Municipal Inventory Adopted 29 Mar 2018 Management Category B

Statement of Significance

Only Ford House itself is of High significance, the barn of moderate significance and all other outbuildings (including the ‘Cook’s Retreat’ adjoining Ford House), have no historic significance at this time. Aesthetic Value Ford House is a handsome homestead character dwelling with scenic views overlooking the Blackwood River, notably less than 500 metres from the Bridgetown commercial zone, yet set in a semi-rural location. Historic Value Ford House is historically valuable as a quality residence constructed before the turn of the 20th Century for its numerous early settler owners who contributed to the early settlement and development of Bridgetown.Research Value Ford House is of some research value as to the building materials, styles and methods of the late nineteenth century, however there have been numerous changes to the building over time, primarily internally. Ford House has moderate research value. Social Value Numerous Ford House owners over the years have made it a very social place: The Walters held dances, tennis competitions and large gatherings. Often they had people visiting or staying over, sometimes waiting for the river to subside before being able to cross. Ford House remains very socially significant at present, used for accommodation, retail outlet, fet

Physical Description

The Ford House property contains the original brick residence fronting Eedle Terrace, now used for guest accommodation, as well as a number of buildings including the re-sited and somewhat original barn, which is now used as the breakfast room for guests. This is adjoined by the WAG Walters Emporium, linked via a gabled iron and timber walkway, which is also a timber & iron structure with vertical timber boarding and two storey verandah. There is also a cottage residence clad in grey Colorbond (built in 2011), a redbrick and tin cottage used for guest accommodation (built in 1999), and a dormer style cottage clad in blue Colorbond, also for guest accommodation, built in 2006. All set amongst dense terraced cottage gardens on the northern bank of the Blackwood River. Ford House is a single storey brick & iron residence with a double hipped roof, two simple brick corbelled chimneys and faceted protruding bay windows at the rear. The facades feature a surrounding verandah supported on stop-chamfered posts, and timber framed doubled hung sash windows. The eastern and western ends of the house feature English bond brickwork. The former cook and wash house, located at the west end of Ford House was removed in the late 1970’s and a new timber framed laundry constructed on the old site. A small timber framed weatherboard cottage located on the western side of Ford House (also a guest wing), has a simple gabled corrugated iron roof with single door and four-pane window. The Barn, located to the east of Ford House, consists of a single storey timber frame and corrugated iron roof and is a rectangular structure with vertical plank boarding. This was initially sited down on the river flat and once had large doors to the sides for horses, carts and buggies. However when a large tree fell on the roof in 1972, the then owners had it shifted and reconstructed, recycling much of the original materials as well as other locally recycled barn materials, including from the Giblett farm (possibly Hill Farm).


Ford House was built in 1896 by John William Blechynden Jnr for William Ardagh Gardner (WAG) Walter and his wife Lucille Jane Walter (nee Thomson, granddaughter of John Septimus Roe Esq Surveyor General). The five acre lot was purchased from John Blechynden Senior, part of his original freehold property, the first in Bridgetown. Ford House was named after Walter’s father's house in Taunton, Somerset, UK, of which it also imitates the ground floor design. WAG Walter was the first Magistrate in the South-West and the Mining Registrar during the tin boom in Greenbushes. His brother John (Jack) Walter was the owner of Peninsula House and their wives, Lucille and Louisa were sisters, Thomsons of Brookhampton. WAG remained at Ford House for only nine years. There have been various changes to Ford House residence over many years. The ‘Jarrah Room’ was once the dining room and originally had three entry doors, with now only one remaining. An outbuilding, which can be seen in early photos (three stall wash house and boiler), was removed from the western side of the house. In the 1970’s many cornices were removed due to disrepair, the steel roof replaced and the barn moved. In the 1980’s the entrance hall was modified from a T shape to an L shape, an ensuite added to the master bedroom and the dining room turned into a kitchen. In the 1990’s the brick work was re-tuck pointed and the wall between the wash house and the pantry removed. This space was renovated as a kitchen, with an original window exposed which had been bricked over. Since it was purchased by the current owner in 1995, the ballroom has been converted to a bedroom and ensuite; an original fireplace restored using the original tiles. Old carpets were lifted, exposed original floorboards polished and insulation added.


Medium to High Although often rented out for accommodation throughout the years, Ford House has been continually used as a residence. Ford House itself is no longer used as a private residence, but rather as a high end guest house. High (externally) Externally Ford House has high authenticity, with only a few windows having been replaced, in somewhat similar style, and all other maintenance done in keeping with the original house. Internally, Ford House has low to moderate authenticity.




Ref ID No Ref Name Ref Source Ref Date
McAlinden, Ida Amelia People and Places, Paterson Brokensha Pty Ltd, Western Australia 1952
Current Owner Collection of information passed on from previous owners

Other Reference Numbers

Ref Number Description
No.B6 MI Place No.
A31841 Assess No (Shire Ref)

Place Type

Individual Building or Group


Epoch General Specific
Present Use RESIDENTIAL Single storey residence
Original Use RESIDENTIAL Single storey residence

Architectural Styles

Victorian Georgian
Federation Bungalow

Construction Materials

Type General Specific
Roof METAL Corrugated Iron
Wall BRICK Pointed Brick

Historic Themes

General Specific

Creation Date

11 Sep 1992

Publish place record online (inHerit):


Last Update

27 Apr 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.