• Office of the Premier and Cabinet Room

    Historic Hale House in West Perth has been refurbished as part of a $25.5 million project to permanently house the State Cabinet meeting room, the Cabinet Secretariat and the Office of the Premier.

    Office of the Premier and Cabinet Room

    The State Cabinet meeting room, the Cabinet Secretariat and the Office of the Premier were originally to be located at Dumas House, which was refurbished in 2012. After further planning was carried out, insufficient space to adequately house the functions of premier and cabinet in this building led to alternatives being explored. The Hale House location – only 150 metres from Parliament House – and the desirability of restoring this valuable historic building to a heritage standard, resulted in a recommendation to house the Cabinet Secretariat and the Office of the Premier there.

    The refurbished ground floor contains a ceremonial entry, reception and waiting areas, courtyard, offices and meeting rooms, cabinet room and cabinet lounge, along with kitchen, administration and service functions.

    The first floor houses meeting and conference rooms, offices, waiting rooms and service areas.

    Materials for the refurbishment have been sensitively selected in sympathy to the heritage qualities of the building to ensure a continuity of design, and original finishes and details reinstated where possible. Contemporary glazing, lighting and furnishing are in keeping with the character of the building.

    The restored and dignified heritage building and surrounding gardens provide a suitably impressive setting to receive dignitaries and overseas guests, and reconnect the Office of the Premier with the public in an engaging, accessible space.

    The historic site allows the Office of the Premier and the Cabinet Secretariat to be housed permanently in a uniquely Western Australian environment in an impressive heritage listed building owned by the Government.

    History

    Hale House was originally a school building. In 1858, the Anglican bishop of Perth, Dr Matthew Blagden Hale, was concerned that there was no secondary school available to boys in the fledgling colony. He established what was known as the High School at The Cloisters in St Georges Terrace.

    In 1914, the High School moved to Havelock Street, West Perth. However, the boarding students continued using accommodation at the St Georges Terrace site until Hale House was built. Hale House was designed by architect Herbert Parry, an old boy of the school, and built at the Havelock Street site in 1925/26 by M. Ellyard. It was designed in a traditional school manner, with dining and communal rooms on the ground floor, and dormitory, infirmary and bathroom on the first floor. When the building opened it housed 43 students and by the 1950s there were 90 boarders living there.

    In the early 1960s, the school relocated to its current 55 hectare site in Wembley Downs and Hale House was subsequently occupied by the Department of Education from 1963 until May 2011.

    In the early 2000s the school buildings closer to Havelock Street were refurbished and converted to house the Constitutional Centre of Western Australia while Hale House continued to be used by the Department of Education. Hale House was registered as a heritage building in June 2001 but was in need of restoration.

    Office of the premier and Cabinet Room