Roundhouse History

The Round House is the oldest public building in the State of Western Australia. Opened in January 1831, just 18 months after settlement, it was built to hold any person convicted of a crime in the settlement and was used until 1886.

After it ceased being used as a gaol it became a Police Lock-up until the late 1890's and then was used as accommodation for the Water Police, and afterwards as a storage facility for Fremantle Ports. When threatened with demolition in the 1920's it was saved and later control went to the State Government before it was deeded to the City of Fremantle.

Fremantle Volunteer Heritage Guides

Want to know more about the Roundhouse and its history?

The Fremantle Volunteer Heritage Guides (FVHG) have people situated inside the Roundhouse ready and willing to answer your questions!

Formed in 1998, the FVHG were granted a licence by the Fremantle Council to open the Round House and provide guides to inform and interpret its history to visitors to the Arthur Head Precinct. The Guides are all Volunteers who like meeting and sharing our history with the visitors to the Round House.