12 February 2015 New life for historic cottages

Defence Housing Australia (DHA) has commenced the first stages of work on the restoration of the historic ‘Gunners’ Cottages’ in Fremantle.

Located at the Artillery Barracks on Queen Victoria Street, the 10 heritage-listed cottages were originally constructed in 1910.

Once used for officers of the adjacent Artillery Barracks (which is now the Army Museum) the cottages have been empty, and in various stages of disrepair, for more than a decade.

DHA Managing Director Peter Howman said the much-needed restoration of the cottages was a positive step forward for both the local community and the State’s Defence history, particularly as we celebrate 100 years since the Great War.

‘We are proud to be a part of the Defence landscape in Australia during such an integral and important time in our history,’ Mr Howman said. ‘The cottages serve as an important reminder of the historic coastal defence of the Port of Fremantle and remain a valued part of Fremantle’s heritage.

‘DHA is transforming these historical dwellings – returning them to their former glory and preserving this important chapter of history for future generations.’

The 10 existing cottages on the site will join six new dwellings to be constructed.  Ultimately, there will be three one-bedroom, 12 two-bedroom and one three-bedroom cottages on the site, constituting one house, six duplex units and nine townhouses.

DHA will retain all 16 dwellings and, when complete, the cottages will become home to Defence members and their families. 

‘The restoration works will also inject new life into this part of Fremantle – providing a boost to the local economy and, longer term, creating a new community of Defence members and their families,’ Mr Howman said.

Restoration and construction works are due for completion in 2016.

Members of the public can call 1800 087 199 for further information about this development.