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Recreating a street scene from Elizabethan England, this Tudor style arcade is just like the real thing. Only purists will complain about the absence of heavy fog, bubonic plague, and dull overcast skies.
 

Running between the Hay Street Mall, and St Georges Terrace, London Court is a retail walkway aimed directly at tourists. It was built in 1937 by Mr Claude de Bernales.  He was a wealthy mining entrepreneur, and man about town. Claude employed the services of Melbourne architect Bernard Evans, to design his 16th century replica of Elizabethan times.

 

London Court is a very narrow arcade. The multi storied Tudor style facade, creates the impression you are in another era.  The detail in the carved woodwork, and facades is quite extraordinary.  The walkway is adorned with ornate window boxes, crests, gargoyles, and moulded ceilings.   

London Court 
  London Court

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 
 

Perth was established as a British colony in 1829.  Western Australia has always had strong cultural links with Britain, and these values were embodied in the Tudor architecture of London Court.   Today Perth is a multi-cultural city, though in 1937 the community passionately embraced all aspects of the British lifestyle.  The construction of London Court also reflected an element of British stoicism, as our economy was still emerging from the dark days of the Great Depression.

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.  Not to be confused with Version 1.0 who reigned during the Tudor Age.
Keep Calm and Carry on Shopping. 

 

Tudortorial  Hay Street Mall entrance to London Court. 
Tudortorial 101.  Hay Street Mall Entrance.

 
Keep an eye out for the statues of Sir Walter Raleigh and Dick Whittington.  They are situated high on the inside walls at each end of the arcade. 

  During lunchtime, thousands of city office workers use London Court as a shortcut between St Georges Terrace, and a tasty meal in the Hay Street Mall.  Don't get trampled in the stampede!
London Court Galleon.
 
Discover this copper
galleon sailing
across a ceiling!
 
 
Even though the shopping hours are rather restrictive, time will always be on your side. For above each entrance to London Court is a clock face modelled on a famous international time piece. The "Great Clock" of Rouen in France adorns the Hay Street Mall entrance, and "Big Ben" of London keeps time over St Georges Terrace.  These clocks were the only components of London Court that had to be imported from overseas.  The builders simply ran out of time.

  Big Ben of London Court.   The Great Clock of London Court.   
 
Big Ben The Great Clock

The Tournament of Armoured Knights.
 

Tourists gather every quarter hour at the Hay Street Mall entrance to watch four mechanical knights joust in a window above the chiming clock.  Known as “The Tournament of Armoured Knights” the spectacle may be a little overrated,  but it is worth waiting 15 minutes for.   If you wait any longer than 15 minutes please report the fault to London Court management.

Warning – Spoiler Coming Up:   Look closely, and you can see the losing knight fall backwards from his horse.
Another clockwork performance.
   
Down at the St Georges Terrace entrance, there is a static miniature of the brave knight St George, engaged in battle with a fierce dragon.  You can watch these guys all day, though chances are you’ll move before they do. 

Once all the jousting is over, you can then enter London Court and do battle with the Australian Dollar. There are some nice tourist orientated shops to browse, and you might be able to pick up a postcard of London Court.
St George and the Dragon.
St George and the Dragon.

Tudor windows at the Sir Walter Raleigh end of London Court.
 
The Elizabethan experience is authentic, though bucket loads of household waste are no longer poured from the upper level windows. Complaints from passing tourists, and smartly dressed business people soon ended this rather hit and miss tradition.  The Tudor windows remain faithful. They comprise of many small panes of glass, each individually framed in a lattice pattern.   In Tudor times large sheets of glass were difficult to assemble, so the panes were small, and held in place by lead frames. Glass windows were first introduced to homes during the Tudor period.  They were a very expensive luxury at the time.  
 Sir Walter Raleigh looking into some Tudor windows.  

 
London Court originally included 24 residential units which were thoroughly modern for 1937.   They contained early air conditioning units, and were smart wired for astounding new technologies, such as radios, telephones, and electric toasters.   Smart wiring 1937 style meant the power outlets were located near empty bench space.  It was forward thinking, though the people of Perth were not yet ready to swap large residential blocks for confined inner city living. The units have since been converted into office space, and storage area for the shops.
 
iPad connectivity was not an option in 1937.

 
Welcome to London Court!
Welcome to London Court!
An old English Tavern once occupied the large basement area below the St Georges Terrace end of London Court. It was decorated in the Elizabethan style, and specialised in serving grilled food.  Today the basement is used by a fantasy, and war gaming store.  Don’t let the rather spooky looking creatures on the walls of the basement stairwell put you off. They may suspiciously resemble figures associated with the Knights Templar,  though we can confidently assure potential “Ark” hunters, it isn’t down there.  We looked. London Court Basement

 

 

Being an open air arcade it can lose a little of that Elizabethan charm, if you happen to gaze skywards at Perth's modern skyline.  It is much wiser to keep your eyes straight ahead, and think of Tudor England.
Ye Olde Postcard Shop
Inside London Court.  Dick Whittington end. 
The modern Perth skyline towers over London Court. Statue of Dick Whittington and his cat.

 

  London Court is disproportionally over represented on Perth postcards.  With such an oversupply of images you should always shop around for the best price.  It is sometimes difficult to avoid buying a postcard of London Court.  We haggled the price down on this tidy selection, and walked away smiling.

LOCATION:   Hay Street Mall opposite the Plaza Arcade.
Psst!  Wanna buy some cheap postcards?
   
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