Rockingham’s historic Chesterfield Inn being given a new lease on life


Repair work has started on the Chesterfield Inn in Rockingham.
Repair work has started on the Chesterfield Inn in Rockingham.

ROCKINGHAM’S historic Chesterfield Inn is being given a new lease on life.

Essential repair works by LandCorp are underway to protect and preserve one of the region’s oldest structures.

The Inn is the oldest commercial building in the area, tracing its history back more than 160 years, and has stood vacant for the past 25 years.

LandCorp chief executive Frank Marra said the repair works would help protect the structure of the building for future use, and preserve the significant historic and social value of the site, which is part of the Rockingham Industry Zone.

“As one of the state’s only surviving 19th century hotels, the Chesterfield Inn has earned a special place in the history and hearts of the Rockingham community,” Mr Marra said.

“The primary repair works will focus on stabilising the existing single-storey building and replacing essential features such as the roof and front wall to prevent further deterioration.

“The new front wall will be constructed using original materials to preserve the Federation style of the Inn, which still features the same limestone and brick used to build it well over a century ago.”

In addition to the repair works, LandCorp is also installing a new security fence and boarding up the building entryways to better protect the site from vandalism.

Additions made to the building in the 1970s are being demolished, in accordance with the approved Heritage conservation plan.

The inn was heritage listed in 2003 in recognition of the significant social and historical value of the building, which has connections to a number of pioneering families and individuals who played important roles in establishing the Rockingham region.

With origins dating back to 1855, the inn and surrounding land in East Rockingham have taken many forms, including operating as a hotel, a farmhouse used an encampment for the 10th Light Horse Regiment from 1912, and later a dairy farm.

Most recently, the inn functioned as the Chesterfield House youth hostel from 1979 until 1992, when fire damage forced the site to be abandoned.

Mr Marra said the initial repair works would help restore the structural integrity of the inn, with further restoration and refurbishment then up to the future owner of the site.

He said the restored Inn would be suited for use as office space to support a larger industrial facility.

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