The Barracks Buildings

The Guard House 1840

(Georgian) Designed by Roger Kelsall (Commander Royal Engineers). Built on the site of prior Guard-houses. It had 4 cells for soldiers that had committed misdemeanors or broken curfew.


2_Military HospitalThe Military Hospital 1816-1818

(Georgian) Designed by Lt John Watts, aid to Governor Macquarie, or possibly Mrs Elizabeth Macquarie. The hospital consisted of three wards, a surgery, storeroom and two rooms for the hospital sergeant. The operating table was illuminated by a skylight and adjustable mirrors.

3_Two Storey Soldiers' BarracksThe Two-Storey Soldiers’ Barracks 1847-1848

(Regency), Designed by James Conway Victor (royal engineer). The third major barracks on the site the building was originally named “Anglesey Barracks” after the Earl of Anglesey. Later the name with its current spelling came into common usage for the whole precinct. In 1901 this building was extended to complete its original design necessitating the demolition of the first barracks building the “Old Soldiers’ Barracks (1814)

4_Old Soldiers' Barracks locationOld Soldiers’ 1814 Barracks

(Georgian). Designed by possibly Mrs. Elizabeth Macquarie. This was the first significant building at Anglesea Barracks. It was demolished in 1909. The Field Officers’ Barracks was also commenced in 1814 and remains as the oldest building in the Barracks. During the construction the Governor Macquarie specifically directed that these Barracks be completed first as a matter of priority. When new it had uninterrupted views to Sullivan’s cove Dewent Harbour. The building consisted of four large rooms each intended to accommodate forty soldiers. There were also small apartments or non-commissioned officers and a dinning hall. The Barracks kitchens were contained in a small room at the back of the main structure

The New Soldiers’ Barracks 1827

(Regency) Designed by Major Richard Turton and Colonial Architect David Lamb, amended by subsequent Colonial Architect John Lee Archer. The New Soldiers’ Barracks mirrored the Old Soldiers’’ Barracks. The building was extensively updated in 1934. It was doubled in width to allow a new Southern facing frontage. At this frontage new gun parks and harness rooms were constructed.

The Tap Room 1835

(Georgian)Designed by John Lee Archer The Tap Room was the soldiers’ “pub”. It had the Tap Room on the right of the bar and a separate room for on the left for the sergeants’ alcohol. After the withdrawal of British forces  in 1870 the various buildings at the Barracks  were put to other uses. The Tap Room was used by the Hobart Meteorological Bureau from 1882 until the 1970s.  This building is the last remaining Colonial Georgian military canteen in Australia.

7_The Fives CourtThe Fives Court 1835

(Georgian) Designed by John Lee Archer. Fives is a handball sport very like squash. No racquets are used rather bare or gloved hands. The game was played using a doubles format. The Barracks fives court is a replica of one at Eton College where the game had its roots.

8_The Drill HallThe Drill Hall 1912

(Federation) The Drill Hall was one of several buildings added to the Barracks precinct after federation. Drill and weapons handling were practiced here.

9_Field Officers' QuatersThe Field Officers’ Quarters 1814

(Georgian) Designed by Lt John Watts, aid to Governor Macquarie, or possibly Mrs Elizabeth Macquarie.  This is the oldest remaining building at Anglesea Barracks. It provided separate apartments for a field officer and four captains , with their wives, families and servants. It included private kitchens, toilets, kitchen gardens and harness rooms at the rear. (now demolished) The incentive for gentleman to chose a military career significant.

10_Th Parade Ground LocationParade Ground

The Parade Ground, like the Drill Hall was where the discipline of the military was not only learned but displayed. It was the place of ceremony and major declarations; the interface between the military and the public. The buildings were constructed around the Parade Ground to reinforce its centrality.

11_Transit of Venus LocationTransit of Venus Instrument Pillar

The Transit of Venus astronomical observation installation 1874. The transit of Venus is a rare event when the planet Venus passes in front of the Sun as viewed from Earth. Observations of it aided astronomers calculate the distance from Earth to Sun. Accuracy of this measurement was of great assistance to navigation. In 1874 two Australian sites, both Tasmanian, contributed data along as did over eighty observation sites world wide.  One was at Campbell Town in the Midlands and the other at Anglesea Barracks. The project was led by Professor William Harkness of the US Navy and produced very accurate results.. The observation involved projecting images from a telescope onto a photographic plate 12 meters away. Each instrument was mounted on a substantial iron pillar. One pillar remains as does the base of the second.

The 99th Regiment Memorial 1850

During its tour of duty in Tasmania the 99th Regiment of the British army erected this monument to fallen comrades who dies during the New Zealand wars. (1845 to 1872).  This is the only memorial by British colonial troops to their comrades erected in Australia.

Linden Avenue 1860

The trees that make up the Linden Avenue were planted in 1860 and are now heritage listed. The avenue extends along Bararck St to Davey St. Colonel RD Broughton, Royal Engineer designed the planting to provide formal access to the Barracks.

14_Subalterns' QuartersThe Subalterns/Officers Quarters 1827 – 1842

(Georgian) The Northern terrace was designed by David Lambe. The Southern and infill terraces were designed by John Lee Archer. This building was constructed in three stages over fifteen years and completed the enclosure of the Parade Ground.  The first stage, the lowest of the three terraces, provided a Captain’s quarters and the Officers’ Mess – the social centre of Hobart Town. The later two stages provided accommodation for junior officers. Behind the terrace were kitchens servants’ quarters and a privy. These were demolished many years ago.

15_Military GaolThe Military Gaol 1847

(Regency) Designed by Lt Colonel JC Victor of the Royal Engineers. This was a goal to accommodate wayward soldiers, not convicts. It contained 12 single cells with ducted heating, ventilation, inside toilets and running water. These modern facilities were exceptional in their time. Certainly no convicts had such accommodation and in fact the private homes of even well to do free men were rarely as comfortable. The gaol was built when military numbers were at their peak in colonial Tasmania. This gaol preceded the “Separate Prison” built at Port Arthur in 1850. While at the gaol soldiers continued to be drilled in an enclosed exercise yard. The rear wall of the exercise yard was demolished and a carpenter’s workshop added in the Barracks expansion post federation.


Click here for slideshow of the Barrarcks  Buildings