Refurbished Stirling House will house the North Fremantle School of Early Learning

Above: Many educational and recreational opportunities are provided for children at the new centre. Left: Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt with school owner Sarah Lovegrove. Main picture: Martin Kennealey d428076
Above: Many educational and recreational opportunities are provided for children at the new centre. Left: Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt with school owner Sarah Lovegrove. Main picture: Martin Kennealey d428076

THE refurbished and heritage-listed Stirling House was officially opened as the North Fremantle School of Early Learning's new home last Wednesday.

Stirling House has a long history, including life as a summer camping place for the Whadjuk, a convict depot, a halfway house for prisoners and the early home of the North Fremantle Primary School.

The refurbishment was done through a partnership between the National Trust and private operator Schools of Early Learning.

Premier Colin Barnett and Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt attended the opening of the $2.35 million project, which will provide up to 24 childcare jobs and could cater to 112 children a day.

SEL director Brett Thomson said there would be many educational and recreational opportunities for children at the new centre.

‘The partnership with the National Trust has delivered innovative facilities, including a creative outdoor environment which offers children new sandpits, wet areas, the shade of established trees, a vegetable garden and fruit trees, a chicken coop, rainwater tanks and rain gauges all in a spectacular heritage site,’ he said.

National Trust of Australia WA chairman John Cowdell said they were delighted with the results at Stirling House.

‘The best heritage outcome is that the place is used for the purpose it was originally designed and built,’ he said.