Shop and House at 237-239 Franklin Street

Also known as:
The Friendly Backpackers

Two-storey former shop and residence built to the Franklin Street alignment. Front elevation is of sandstone with rendered quoins and window and door surrounds: visible side walls are of random bluestone. Roof is hipped and of corrugated galvanised iron; there are paired brackets beneath the eaves. Photographs of 1992 show a cantilevered balcony and verandah to the first floor. This remains and features a concave roof, timber posts and cast iron brackets, balustrade of cast metal and a timber rail. A concave verandah to the ground floor has since been built springing from the edge of the balcony to the edge of the pavement; roof is concave corrugated galvanised iron, posts of timber with cast metal brackets. Window and doors are timber framed, with double hung sash windows and timber panelled doors: central doorway features a round arch with carriage lights on either side.

The building operates as a Backpacker hostel.

This building has been assessed as meeting local heritage criteria in accordance with the Development Act (1993).  However, despite its nomination for heritage listing by the Adelaide City Council, the Minister for Planning has refused to approve the listing, leaving this building without heritage protection.

Current status and listings

ACH Status:
Heritage Protection:
ACC Heritage ID:

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This building was constructed on portion of Town Acre 256 that was originally granted to Elizabeth Dyer on 23 December 1837.

Over time the land was subdivided and when the first Torrens Title was issued to butcher William Trenerry in November 1876 the land area was an ‘L’ shape and had a depth of 213 ft. The building was constructed as a shop and residence on the Franklin Street frontage for Trenerry. Assessment records indicate that the area was still vacant at the end of 1878 but that by 1880 (adopted 24 November 1879) a house and shop occupied and owned by Trenerry had been constructed. The outline of the building is indicated on the Smith Survey of 1880.

The building is of heritage value because of its age, and as a good example of a two-storey dwelling in what was once a predominantly residential part of the city. It illustrates several key themes in the city’s history:  2.4 City Dwellers: Householders, Boarders and Tenants; 4.3 Development of the Building Industry, Architecture and Construction; 4.5.2 Victorian Houses (1870s to 1890s); 4.6 Heritage and Building Conservation; 4.7.1 Adaptive re-use.

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