Heritage is about the things from the past which
are valued enough today to save for tomorrow.

Bishop’s House

Bishop’s House is a two-storey residence constructed in 1859 for the first Anglican Bishop of Western Australia, Mathew Blagden Hale. In 1875, Hale was appointed Bishop of Brisbane, and handed all his Perth properties over to the Anglican Church. When the Archbishop of Canterbury was asked for a new Bishop, he was informed that ‘there is an excellent Bishop’s House with commodious stables and out-buildings, in the best situation in the city’.

When Bishop Charles Owen Leaver Riley arrived to take up his post in 1895, Bishop’s House was renovated and repaired for his occupancy. In 1904, Bishop Riley enlarged Bishop’s House and the sheoak shingles were replaced with terracotta tiles, and servants’ quarters and a large kitchen were added.

After World War II, archbishops did not favour Bishop’s House as their residence and in 1959 it was leased by Legacy as their Perth headquarters, and became known as Legacy House. In 1984 Bishop’s House was renovated and restored by architects, Oldham Boas Ednie-Brown, and Lord McAlpine used it as his Perth residence.

Today the building is a multi-level restaurant, Lamont’s Bishop’s House, and is much in demand for weddings due to its magnificent gardens.

Detailed Description

Bishop’s House is a two-storey residence constructed in 1859 for the first Anglican Bishop of Western Australia, Mathew Blagden Hale. Hale was educated at Cambridge and held various posts as a clergyman in England before he met Bishop Short, Bishop of Adelaide, who convinced him to come to Australia. After serving as Archdeacon of Adelaide, in 1856 he was appointed as the first Bishop of Perth. He wrote to his family:
I have bought a beautiful piece of ground for our house at Perth. The situation is most lovely and there is excellent garden ground and a spring of water, which I believe runs all year. Our ground is as pretty as any in the place.

Two years it later, Bishop Hale arranged for ticket-of-leave men to construct Bishop’s House. After this, the Hale family travelled to England, not returning until April 1860. Bishop’s House was completed while they were away. In his diary he wrote:
We found our house quite ready to step into. Mr Mears and Ann had prepared everything. Everyone in town was aware that Bishop’s House was ready even to the making of the beds.

In 1875, Bishop Hale was appointed Bishop of Brisbane, and he handed all his Perth properties over to the Anglican Church. When the Archbishop of Canterbury was asked for a new Bishop, he was informed that ‘there is an excellent Bishop’s House with commodious stables and out-buildings, in the best situation in the city’.

Bishop Henry Hutton Parry moved into Bishop’s House in 1876, with his wife and two sons. However, he had no private means and found the upkeep of Bishop’s House beyond him. In 1886, he moved his family into Bishop’s Cottage and Bishop’s House was privately leased.

The next Bishop to occupy Bishop’s House was Charles Owen Leaver Riley who arrived to take up his post in 1895. Bishop’s House was renovated and repaired for his occupancy. In 1904, Bishop Riley enlarged Bishop’s House and the sheoak shingles were replaced with terracotta tiles, and servants’ quarters and a large kitchen were added.

After World War II, archbishops did not favour Bishop’s House as their residence and in 1959 it was leased by Legacy as their Perth headquarters, and became known as Legacy House. In 1984 Bishop’s House was renovated and restored by architects, Oldham Boas Ednie-Brown, and Lord McAlpine used it as his Perth residence.

Today the building is a multi-level restaurant, Lamont’s Bishop’s House, and is much in demand for weddings due to its magnificent gardens.

Location