Happy 95th birthday Wesley!
Tuesday 13 February is a special day in the College calendar as it is 95 years since the first classes commenced – on 13 February 1923.
Wesley has remained on the same site throughout its 95 years, albeit an extended one – initially the College site was bounded by Swan, Coode, and Angelo streets and along a line roughly where the Angelo Street entrance and car park are now. A process of gradual property acquisition has resulted in the campus we know today.
In that first year, there were only 38 students, over half of whom were boarders, mainly from the farming areas south and east of Perth. Day boys were drawn from the developing suburb of South Perth or from North Perth and Mt Lawley, the latter travelling via the Coode Street ferry from the city.
Initially, there was only one permanent building, the ground floor of what is known today as the Ward Wing. The upper floor was added in 1926 and the building has been significantly altered a number of times since then. That initial building served as classrooms (2), dormitory accommodation for 20 boys, rooms for three resident staff and Matron, and home to the Headmaster, Mr J F Ward, his wife and four children.
The ensuing 95 years has seen the remarkable developments at the College. Click here to find out more about life at the College today.
The entire College in the playground, 1923. The prefabricated gymnasiums overlooked the beginnings of Ward Oval.