Bridge Street Then and Now
A re-write focusing on the historic buildings
Journal 1, pp. 25-55
This journey along Bridge Street starts at the bridge and moves along the even-numbered side of the road, returns to the bridge and continues along the properties with odd street numbers.
Richmond Bridge 1823: the oldest surviving bridge in Australia C1950s CRVHS Collection The Reserve – formerly known as the Village Green
The grassed area near the bridge used to be known as the Village Green; that title has been transferred to the park next to the Court House, further along Bridge Street. This small reserve features a rose garden in memory of Trooper Williams.
The inscription in memory of Trooper Williams
On page 74 of her memoir about growing up in Richmond, Mary Kinloch Wishaw wrote, ‘no Police Officer has been more popular than First Class Constable Cyril G Williams, who retired in  after thirty-four years there.’ The inscription shown above celebrates his faithful, efficient and just service of the people of Richmond. Apparently, he explained that his ‘duty [was] to keep people out of gaol rather than put them in.’
Bridge View Retreat: 64 Bridge St The cottage at 64 Bridge Street is an example of Old Colonial Georgian architecture. A small single-storey sandstone cottage with a central door and flanking windows, it has a veranda to the street.
Cottage: 62 Bridge St The cottage at 62 Bridge St is an example of Old Colonial Georgian architecture. A small symmetrical worker’s cottage with a veranda to the street, it is made from sandstone with an early skillion addition at the rear.
Mill Cottage c1850: 58 Bridge St Mill Cottage is an example of Old Colonial Georgian architecture. It is a small brick cottage that has had a shop window added at an early stage. The cottage has a central door, one extant double hung window and one that has been removed and replaced with a larger window. The cottage has a hipped roof and no eaves. It was built as a shop for the Misses Moran, and was later used as a bootmaker’s shop. It is now the Peppercorn Gallery.
Municipal Park: Bridge St – now known as the Village Green Next to the Court House is the Municipal Park, [now usually] called the Village Green. It was originally the Convict Muster Ground. For many years, the Richmond Agricultural Show was held here, now the Village Fair is held here each year. This drone shot shows the Watch House, Post Office, Court House and Town Hall in the bottom left, the Village Green, the Miller’s Cottage and the playground which is approximately on the site of Buscombe’s windmill.
Village Fair is held here at the Municipal Park each year
Miller’s Cottage c1837: 56 Bridge St The Miller’s Cottage is an example of Old Colonial Georgian architecture. A small brick vernacular cottage with a hipped shingle bell cast roof, it has a veranda. In the 1980s its threatened demolition was fought successfully by the local National Trust group. The Providence Mill c1830 was once located nearby. The mill was a flour mill, originally wind-powered but later converted to steam. Derelict for many years, it was demolished in 1908.
Court House 1825: 54 Bridge St Designed by David Lambe, the Court House is a stucco building. At the time of the construction of the Court House in 1825, Van Diemen’s Land became a separate colony and Richmond became the centre of one of several police districts. The original magistrates’ bench can still be seen in the Court House. The Court House was also used for church services and concerts. In 1861 Richmond became a municipality and the Court House served as the Council Chambers until 1993, when Richmond Council amalgamated with Clarence City Council. Behind the Court House is the Watch House, built in 1838.
Town Hall 1908: 54 Bridge St The Town Hall, a sandstone building with a notched parapet gable, was built using stone from the disused Providence Mill and from the Police Barracks (1833) which were roughly on the site of the car park behind the hall.
Bridge Inn: 50 Bridge St The Bridge Inn is an example of Old Colonial Regency architecture. The building (c1817) was originally single-storey, with seven rooms, and was known as the Richmond Wine Vaults. Now a two-storey brick building, it features a symmetrical façade, chimneys and a veranda on both floors. The veranda is a later addition. The Bridge Inn was continually licensed as a hotel from 1834 until 1975. In 1985 it was restored to its external 1830s appearance and shops were incorporated.
Saddlers’ Court c1840s: 48 Bridge St Saddler’s Court is an example of Old Colonial Georgian architecture. Made of brick with double hung windows, the building has a shop front and veranda. Formerly a general store, it was later a saddlery owned by Mr H G Thompson (later Council Clerk). Restored in 1968, it was opened by Alice Krongaard as Richmond’s first gallery.
Czegs’ c1830: 46 Bridge St The single-storey cottage at 46 Bridge Street is an example of Old Colonial Regency architecture. Built of sandstone and stucco, the property is currently an eatery with early additions used as a residence at the rear. The building has a central door, with twenty-pane windows either side. It also features quoins. The building has been used as a bakery, butcher’s shop, doctor’s surgery and residence. It was known as Ma Foosies before being sold and renamed Czegs’.
Cottage: 44 Bridge St The cottage at 44 Bridge Street is a weatherboard cottage, two rooms deep, built in the Old Colonial Georgian style. The roof is steeply pitched with chimneys set within the building.
Richmond Arms 1888 and site of Lennox Arms : 42 Bridge St The Richmond Arms is an example of Old Colonial Georgian architecture. Originally a simple Colonial Georgian building made of sandstone, it has a Victorian lacework veranda. The name was changed from the Commercial Hotel in 1972.
Lennox Arms Stables (all that remains after the fire) The Lennox Arms was destroyed by fire on 27 July 1886. One of the two stables remains and has been modified for accommodation. Built in 1827 by James Kestell Buscombe, the Lennox Arms was reputedly the oldest established inn in the district. Licensees included Charles Lamb, Richard Ockerby and William Featherstone. It was located slightly to the right of the present hotel, near the Granary.
Sketch of former Lennox Arms by Muriel Horsfall Oak Lodge Collection
Sketch of Shipley’s Shop and The Granary: 36 Bridge St Between the hotel and The Granary was a small shop which may have been used as a post office. It had a bow front window. J C Shipley had a joiner’s and turner’s business attached to the cottage. It may also have been the site of Si Shipley’s blacksmith shop. Sketch by Muriel Horsfall from Oak Lodge Collection
This structure on the former site of Shipley’s Shop has nothing to do with the Granary. It was installed on the block by a previous owner.
The Granary c1829: 38 Bridge St The Granary is an example of Old Colonial Georgian architecture. A three-storey sandstone building, it features a gable roof with gantry openings to the front. It shares a common wall with the building next door, and this has given rise to the suggestion that it was built by James Kestell Buscombe. However, George Wray applied in 1830 to build a store for the reception of grain to be conveyed to Hobart Town by water for which purpose he was building two vessels. When Buscombe sold the granary in 1864 he stated it held 10,000 bushels of grain. The horse operated hoist fixture can still be seen. The grain was shipped by barge to Hobart and Sydney. The Granary was later owned by Misses Margaret, Muriel and Connie Horsfall. The ground floor of the building now hosts a boutique called Giraffic Park, while the top two and a half floors contain a Christmas shop.
Buscombe’s Store and Post Office c1835: 36 Bridge St 36 Bridge Street is an example of Old Colonial Regency architecture. The original single storey building was built in 1826 and was added to by James Buscombe in the 1830s. Built of sandstone and stucco, the building was once a general store. The fenestration (windows) is said to be surprisingly large for the time it was built. It served as the Post Office for many years.
Ashmore House c1850: 34 Bridge St Ashmore House is an example of Old Colonial Georgian architecture. A two-storey corner building, it is constructed from brick and has a shop front. It was built by William Ashmore. For many years, until the 1950s, Miss Amy Jacobs and Miss May Bentley ran a general store in the building. It twice suffered damaging fires and was restored by Mr Anthony Coleman in the 1970s.
Sandstone water trough outside Ashmore House
Cottage: 32 Bridge St The cottage at 32 Bridge St is built in Old Colonial Georgian architectural style. Built of brick, the single-storey cottage has a central door and flanking double hung windows either side. The cottage is two rooms deep, with the chimneys set within the buildings. There is a brick extension at the rear. It has been used as a clothing shop and then a craft beer and wine shop which closed in 2019.
Star and Garter c1830s: 34 Bridge St Built on land granted to William Wise, the property was sold to Thomas Burgess in 1841. It became the Star and Garter in 1845. The left-hand cottage of this group of three was the original hotel and is the oldest section. The front windows have been changed. At one stage it was a private home called Roseville.
Saba: 20 Bridge St This private home, previously known as Lilac Cottage, is built in Old Colonial Georgian architectural style. Set back from the street, it is a single storey brick cottage two rooms deep with an early brick skillion at the rear.
Oak Lodge c1832: 18 Bridge St Oak Lodge is built in Old Colonial Georgian architectural style. It is a substantial two storey house with outbuildings. The site also features cobblestones, period garden planting and mature oak trees. It was built by Henry Buscombe, builder, in 1831 and, in 1843, was bought by Captain James Booth, brother of Charles O’Hara Booth, Commandant of Port Arthur. A small part of the block was sold by auction to shoemaker, Jeremiah Hinds. In 1852 Thomas Burgess bought the property. In the 1850s Reverend David Galer used it as a rectory. It was later the home of American-born Dr William Clark.
Bellevue House c1839: 16 Bridge St Bellevue House is built in Old Colonial Georgian architectural style. It is a substantial two-storey house with a veranda, with walls and outbuildings from the same period. It is not clear when Bellevue was erected but it is thought to have been built by Samuel Evans the younger, a publican of Risdon Creek and later a farmer of Sunnyside, near Richmond. He sold to Benjamin Berthon in 1853 at which time Magistrate Charles Schaw was in residence.
Ivy Cottage: 12 Bridge St Ivy Cottage is built in Victorian Georgian architectural style. It is a brick cottage with a veranda to the street and features a central door with flanking double hung windows. It is thought to have been built by Samuel Evans, and to have been part of Bellevue House originally. It was sold to John Byron, Superintendent of Police in 1848.
Bridge Street: Odd-numbered properties from the Bridge
Poplar Cottage : 49 Bridge St The cottage at 49 Bridge St is an example of Old Colonial Georgian architecture. Originally a pair of single-storey brick conjoined cottages, the building is now used as a single residence, with the addition of a veranda. There is a skillion extension at the rear.
Bridge Cottage : 47 Bridge St Formerly called Loch Lomond, this is an example of Old Colonial Georgian architecture. Built of brick, it is a pair of conjoined cottages under a single hip roof. The cottages are one room wide and two deep. There is a central window flanked by the doors, flanked by another two windows. For many years, the building had only one door. The building also features sandstone quoins.
Baker’s House c1830: 41-43 Bridge St The Baker’s House is an example of Old Colonial Georgian architecture. Built of brick, the property comprises a pair of early colonial worker’s cottages. Both are a single room deep, with additions to the rear, one a skillion and the other a hip. The white cottage contains an original oven. The building is believed to have once been part of Nichols’ Store, a huge shop which burnt down in the 1920s. The adjacent cottages and former shop are believed to date to c1840s.
This building has been a shop since at least the 1980s. Additional details welcome.
This building containing two shops stands on the site of the former Nichols Store.
At one time, early in the nineteenth century, there was a blacksmith operating on the site of the service station. One of Richmond’s first milk bars operated from the premises next door which is now an antique shop.
This butcher’s shop stood adjacent to the gate post you can still see marking the edge of the park.
Saleyards Now a park, this site once had a building on it, most recently used as Tom Keating’s betting shop. The gatepost marks the entrance to the old saleyards.
The garden on the former saleyards site wasn renovated during Winter 2019.
The Village Store c1836: 29 Bridge St The Richmond Village Store is built in Old Colonial Georgian architectural style. Formerly known as Gaby’s Store, the property comprises a group of buildings including a stable. The stable was originally a separate building. Both end buildings are two-storey, with a simple hip roof at one end and gable at the other. The building has wooden gutters. The present carpark was formerly a blacksmith’s shop. Robert Hawkes conducted his smithy there in 1848.
27 Bridge St This building has been the Richmond Wine Centre, Stone and Barrow and is now a cafe called Wattlebanks.
25 Bridge St At one time, early in the nineteenth century, there was a blacksmith operating on this site. This was originally a house, has been a shop and a Bed and Breakfast.
Congregational Church 1873: 25 Bridge St The Congregational Church is built in Victorian Free Gothic architectural style, from sandstone believed to have come from Butcher’s Hill. Simple in design and modestly fitted out, the church replaced an earlier Congregational Chapel in Torrens St of which only the burial ground remains. The church was sold and developed into accommodation and a retail space.
Fry Cottage and shop c1840: 23 Bridge St The cottage and shop at 23 Bridge St are built in Old Colonial Georgian architectural style. The brick building has a shop with substantial cellar at the front and a residence at the back, with a skillion extension. The property also includes a two-hole privy in the back garden. The building was once a Penny Library; the sign on the wall nearest the Church reads: ‘E. Phillips, Exchange Mart.’
Red Brier Cottage c1839: 15 Bridge St Red Brier Cottage is a brick cottage built in Old Colonial Georgian architectural style. It is located on the street and features a central door and flanking windows.
Richmond: A Crossing Place. Richmond, 1973. Woodberry, Joan. Historic Richmond (Tasmania) Sketchbook. 1973. ‘Let’s Talk About Historic Richmond’. Pamphlet. Richmond Preservation and Development Trust, 1996. National Trust of Australia (Tasmania) Southern Women’s Committee. ‘Tour of Richmond Village’. Sunday 31 May, 1970. Tasmanian Heritage Council. Tasmanian Heritage Register, January 1999. Current photos taken by Michelle Harris unless otherwise indicated. The drone photo was taken by Len Gay.