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Bannister Street

Bannister Street is named after Capt Thomas Bannister (1799-1874) who arrived aboard the Atwick in 1829 and was one of the first four buyers of town allotments sold in Fremantle in September 1829 (Hitchcock: 15). He bought lots 29-30. Lot 30 is on the NW corner of Mouat and High Streets and lot 29 is next to it (obviously) in Mouat Street. The Habgood family had a five-roomed cottage on lot 30 in the nineteenth century. After Robert Habgood’s death in 1882, his wife sold the vacant portion of the property to the National Bank of Australia in 1884, which built the extant building in 1902.

The Bannister River and town of North Bannister are also named after him.

arthur e davies

Building of Arthur E. Davies & Co., funeral directors, on the corner of Bannister St. Nos. 85-87 Market Street, opposite the Newport. This site was owned by Amalia Dixon in 1880, when there were a residence and two cottages on the site. She owned the property until 1900; her trustees owned it until 1920 and they owned it in partnership with J J Holmes until 1931. In 1883 the rate books listed a new shop, almost certainly the existing building, and Amalia Dixon was recorded as the shopkeeper. The properties had various lessees over following years. By c. 1894 the lessees were butchers, Reen and Headley, to be Followed, in 1896, by another firm of butchers, Baker and Stevens. In 1898 a third firm of butchers, Holmes Brothers, were occupants; they remained until 1910-11. In the 1920s there was an auction room, possibly in part of the building. The Funeral directors, A.E. Davies and Co., were in the building from 1921, and in 1958 commissioned substantial alterations, which concealed some of the original facade. Another firm of funeral directors, Bowra and O’Dea was there from 1982 to 2004. When they left, the building was restored - to what appears, from a photograph, to be its original condition - revealing the elaborate brick and stucco facade. The awning is unusual for Fremantle, being markedly curved and supported on decorative iron brackets. The restoration was under the direction of John Kirkness.

highamsbuildingThe last element of Higham's Buildings in Market St, the section on the corner of Bannister St, used to house the Palladium Theatre.


The Hougoumont Hotel took over the principal building left by the (second) Fremantle Club.


Bannister Suites Boutique Hotel Accommodation, aka Quality Suites Fremantle, is directly across the road from the Hougoumont, at no. 22, in a new building.


Bannister St Workshop started out as G.A. Davies wine store and stables. He called the premises Grosvenor Cellars. Later the building was transformed by John Dethridge and Brian Klopper into a workshop for craftspeople, despite the Wyola Club wanting to demolish the building. I'm guessing it will become yet another apartment building.

References and Links

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Garry Gillard | New: 13 November, 2015 | Now: 26 July, 2020