Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Fremantle Prison Gatehouse.. Step inside and do time!



The Gatehouse built in 1855 by convicts.. for convicts, using local limestone, the clock imported from England, is the entry point for visitors to Fremantle Prison, the only built World Heritage Site in WA. The prison, initially for convicts transported from Britain, blimey what a shock the heat and terrain would have been for them, looks exactly like it did, below, when it was built. Restoration of the Gatehouse in 2005 to preserve the original stone facade, removing non-original rendering looks amazing.The facility closed as a prison in 1991 and is now one of WA's most fascinating and significant cultural attractions..


Fremantle Prison was WA's only lawful place of executions between 1888- 1984, the first in 1889 and the last, Eric Cooke nicknamed 'the night caller', on 26th October 1964. I can tell you from personal experience the 'gallows room' on a Torchlight Tour tour of the prison makes the hairs on the back of the neck stand right up! On a lighter note :) there were still a few convicts hangin' around looking a bit sad...


There were escapes from Fremantle Prison over the years, non so colourful as that of Moondyne Joe who escaped multiple times. After his last re-capture he was put under strict watch, the then governor John Hampton, so confident that MJ wouldn't be able to escape again announced that if he did he would be pardoned.. well he did and he was :) Not so these furry desperadoes below, well not until a visitor to the prison gift shop shows pity and takes them home! Happy Wednesday, take care and stay safe...


26 comments:

  1. I hope they didn't lock you for too long.

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  2. A distant relative of mine was transported for stealing a couple of geese.... I wonder if he ever entered those imposing gates. Love those desperate teddies and little convicts. All imported from China no doubt!!!!

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  3. I never realised that Koalas were descended from convicted Teddies!

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  4. Oh those poor little Teddies. They look desperate to find someone to take them out of there. What a fascinating place. It made me think about the time I was driving through a city in the state of Iowa and I spotted a castle-like building in the distance. I drove that way to take a closer look and found that it was a prison that had a similar look to this gate. And, it was still in use. I decided a drive-by was as close as I wanted to get.

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  5. ...an interesting bit of history, Grace.

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  6. An important, humane, and insightful post, G!

    "by convicts.. for convicts, blimey what a shock the heat and terrain would have been for them,"

    Indeed! Oh how much!

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  7. It is interesting that the prison was not closed until 1991 and we too had very old prisons still operating up until around then.

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  8. All the more reason to stay on the 'right path'...
    The gatehouse itself is beautiful!

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  9. What wonderful stone gates, Grace! A creepy history though.

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  10. Oh no, I shall rather not do time! But I did enjoy all this information and the photos, very cute too!

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  11. An imposing building! Did you parole one of those furry desperadoes?

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  12. I have a feeling some of my wife's relatives helped build that place. :) It's an impressive gate, but the cute little "furry desperados" are just too cute. Being a prisoner there wasn't cute nor funny.

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  13. Amazing it was still in use until 1991.

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  14. Four years after the closure we visited for the first time, it sure was spooky, Grace. So far we didn't give the night tour a chance, too spooky!

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  15. Such an interesting place. Reminds me of my visit to Alcatraz years ago.

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  16. Brilliant post. Thanks for sharing this.

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  17. Unique looking prison. I would not want to live there though.

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  18. I'd love to go on the torchlight tour!

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  19. Espectacular este magnifico edifício.
    Um abraço e boa semana.
    Andarilhar

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  20. Visiting a prison, really gives me the creeps, I once visited an empty one some time ago, it felt so uncomfortable I had to leave it before the tour ended.

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  21. I would not have wanted to be a prisoner at the time.
    But the gatehouse is still beautiful.

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  22. Nice prison, only to see of course :) Arianna

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  23. Interesting to read and see your photo's, thanks Grace

    All the best Jan

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