For the past few weeks I’ve been juggling three online courses (yes three), my Phd, my business and all the stress that goes with the end of year. But this isn’t about stress or overwhelm. One of those courses, The Photo Essay, has just finished and I thought you’d like to see my final project: a photo essay of Launceston’s hidden gems.
Once criticised as a “pepper-pot” by residents, Launceston’s Italianate post office clock tower is now a popular city landmark. Tourists and residents alike listen out for its distinctive chime every hour, with the timely reminder carrying up through Cataract Gorge on a still night.
What Lies Beneath
Almost hidden by their ground-level location, these sandstone vents provide a different vantage point for those working in the depths of Launceston’s post office building. The building was designed by government architect W Eldridge, with the city gaining its first overland mail service from Hobart in 1816.
An intriguing “ghost” from Launceston’s past, this ‘Wonderland’ sign above the lane off George Street advertised Castley’s souvenir shop around the corner in Brisbane Street.
Reflecting the colours of a summer sky, this 1901 building now houses Shields Heritage law firm. It was previously home to the Launceston Equitable Building Society (now B&E), which was established by a group of community-minded citizens who saw the need for accessible housing finance. The first loan for $400 was issued to James Brickhill to purchase land in Brisbane Street between Margaret and Bourke Streets.
Entry to Cameron House
The National Trust of Australia (Tasmania) says Cameron House is, “distinguished by its multi-coloured stone facade, blue and gold tile decoration and stone carvings”. Those who step inside will see an even more colourful display of wall tiles and tessellated flooring behind the heavy green door. Cameron House is an example of an early commercial office complex, built in the Mannerist form with Romanesque influences.
A view through the window of the modern SweetBrew café reveals a hint of the building’s history. Previously three conjoined Regency-style townhouses built in the 1840s, Kinross House at 91-95 George Street Launceston now accommodates a retail strip. SweetBrew at 93a is sandwiched between a clothing and giftware store.
Who is Alfred Green?
The Alfred Green Esquire mentioned on this dedication was a solicitor with Richie & Parker Alfred Green & Co and laid this foundation stone for the Holy Trinity Parish Hall in 1898. The red brick hall is located next to the Holy Trinity Church on Cameron Street, Launceston, which also features the same red bricks, along with sandstone and was built in Federation Gothic style.
The building at 50 St John Street, Launceston, has been home to Cochrane Bros stock and share brokers, the Commercial Bank of Australia and Padman Optometrists. Now the money changing hands in this sandstone building is in exchange for women’s fashion items at Sportsgirl.
Very Hungry Caterpillars
When a crane arrived to affix an installation at Launceston’s State Library of Tasmania branch in February 2016, residents thought the three plastic-wrapped items were giant caterpillars crawling up the wall. Instead, once the plastic was removed, they could see the creatures were not a vision from Eric Carle’s beloved book, but were falling pages.