A freelance writer and bargain hunter with wanderlust, recently moved to Perth from Brisbane.
Published August 1st 2014
London Court Quirky Shopping Street
A visit to Perth CBD is not complete without a visit to London Court. Although technically not a street and more of a small lane or shopping arcade, it runs between and links Hay Street Mall and St George Terrace. Although not as old as some of the architecture available in London dating to the early centuries, London Court was built in 1937 by Claude de Bernales, a wealthy gold financier and businessman and it is now heritage listed.
As I enter London Court it feels like I am in a time warp, albeit the Disneyland version with an ornate clock at the Hay Street entrance and wrought-iron gates with mock-Tudor and Elizabethan architectural features. The clock is a replica of the great clock at Rouen in France. If you are patient enough to wait for each quarter hour, half hour and hour, the clock chimes with four mechanised knights (known as the tournament of armoured knights) appearing from a castle door as they attempt to joust each other.
On the St George Terrace's entrance, another clock is available which is a replica of Big Ben in London. Above this clock is a miniature St George battling a dragon. Add this to the fact that most people are bundled up on a chilly winter's morning and I feel like I am wandering around somewhere in Europe.
London Court used to be mainly residential flats but they are now mainly commercial premises with small speciality retail shops and cafes. If you are keen for a bit of exercise up the stairways, you can admire London Court through arched iron openings from the second and third level. The village-like atmosphere almost makes you forget that you are standing in central Perth.
London Court is a lot bigger than it looks with shops ranging from services such as money exchange, travel agents to souvenirs and a whole range of jewellers as well as health and beauty stores, food and beverages and fashion. You can easily spend a while wandering through the narrow street and exploring the range of items available. This is after you have exhausted all the photo taking opportunities, of course.