Barracks Arch stands on the corner of Malcolm and Elder Streets, at the top of St George’s Terrace, next to Mitchell Freeway, and is one of Perth’s iconic historic buildings. The barracks were designed by Richard Roach Jewell (1810-91), an English architect and were built between 1863 and 1866 to house the Enrolled Pensioner Force (guards on convict ships). It was originally the entrance to a much grander building called the Pensioner Barracks, both of which housed the Pensioner Guard.
Nearly 10,000 convicts were sent to Perth between 1850 and 1868 and became the responsibility of the Pensioner Guard. The Guard was made up of veteran soldiers from conflicts such as the Crimean War, and the Indian Mutiny. They were offered the chance to settle in Perth, provided they guarded the convicts. Wearing bright redcoats, they added a distinctive flair to colonial Perth. Today, only the Barracks Arch remain and are one of the city’s oldest buildings. The Barracks has even been described as Perth’s very own Arc de Triomphe.
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