Argyle House


City of Albany

Place Number



42-50 Stirling Tce Albany

Location Details


Local Government



Great Southern

Construction Date

Constructed from 1890

Demolition Year


Statutory Heritage Listings

Type Status Date Documents
(no listings)

Other Heritage Listings and Surveys

Type Status Date Grading/Management
Municipal Inventory Adopted 30 Jun 2001 Category B

Statement of Significance

This place is one of a large number of important heritage buildings in Stirling Terrace. Stirling Terrace is one of the significant Local Heritage Areas in the City of Albany. Argyle Buildings is one of the commercial buildings in this part of Stirling Terrace that has imprtnat streetscape value. Like the Backpackers next door it retained a cantilevered verandah.

Physical Description

Set along major commercial strip on Stirling Terrace Two storey building Rendered brick façade Hipped corrugated iron roof only just above parapet wall The words 'Argyle House' appear in bas-relief on raised pediment Arched windows in a single line across second storey of building Contrasting colour used to pick out features on parapet and around windows Cantilevered box verandah Single rendered chimney stands at one end of the building Two shops with recessed doors


This building is situated on that were originally the Hassell family's paddocks and later the site for a shop called 'Gorman's'. Mrs Jas Gorman's Confectionery, Fruit and Fancy Goods Store' located opposite the court house, appears in advertisements in January 1883. The husband was a barber and the wife boarded visiting ships and sold fresh fruit and vegetables. Mrs Gorman returned ashore with exotica for sale in the shop, such as fresh bananas, perfume and lace. By March 1883 she was the proprietor of the 'Albany Temperance Boarding House' in lower Spencer Street close tot he jetty.Argyle House is thought to have been constructed in the early 1890s, in a style matching the adjacent Edinburgh House and Glasgow House. The construction date is not clear, but it is known that the Adelaide Steamship Company was a tenant in 1897. The owner in 1901 was Mrs Elizabeth Dunn, and the tenants included George Wills & Co., agents for the Australasian United Steam Navigation Company Ltd, George Johnson Architect, and the Adelaide Steamship Company. Photographs of Stirling Terrace in 1911 and 1912 indicate that a double storey balcony with timber balustrade and timberwork detail was attached to the Argyle building early in 1912. Since that time there have been various changes to the façade of the building, and all but one of the upstairs windows appear to have been replaced. Stirling Terrace is one of the City of Albany's most signiificant heritage assets, both as a streetscape and as a collection of Victorian and Federation period buildings overlooking Princess Royal Harbour. Stirling Terrace is located in visually striking topography and its segmented crescent plan form remains basically as it was when first recorded by Surveyor Hillman in 1835. The mature trees and the harmonious architectural composition of diverse building types and styles provide additional visual interest. Stirling Terrace was developed from the 1830s following the establishment of Albany as part of the Swan River colony, and was an important part of the development of the region and the State to varying degrees from the 1830s until World War One. The 1835 Hillman survey plan set the scene for the emergence of Stirling Terrace as the prime location in the town, with a rich variety of social, commercial, leisure, institutional and service functions. The majority of the built fabric which remains today was completed in the period 1867 to 1915. The buildings were designed by some of the State's most eminent architects and many were built for prominent citizens and institutions. Over the years the commercial focus of Albany has moved to York Street, with many institutions, such as banks and the post office relocating there. Free of substantial development pressure at a critical time, Stirling Terrace has managed to retain many of its historic structures and features. Viewed from the harbour, and from the western approach to the town, Stirling Terrace has a landmark quality as a whole.


Integrity: High Modifications: Original verandah removed 􀂱 canopy added Shops fronts have changed significantly




Ref ID No Ref Name Ref Source Ref Date
K Bizzaca; "Stirling Terrace, Albany, Draft Conservation Plan". Considine & Griffiths Architects 2000
L Johnson; "Town of Albany Heritage Survey". 1994
Heritage TODA Y Site visit and Assessment 1999

State Heritage Office library entries

Library Id Title Medium Year Of Publication

Place Type

Individual Building or Group


Epoch General Specific
Original Use COMMERCIAL Shopping Complex
Present Use COMMERCIAL Shopping Complex

Construction Materials

Type General Specific
Wall BRICK Rendered Brick
Roof METAL Corrugated Iron

Historic Themes

General Specific
OCCUPATIONS Commercial & service industries

Creation Date

27 Jun 1988

Publish place record online (inHerit):


Last Update

01 Jan 2017


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