The Shearers Quarters sits tucked into a gentle rise at Waterview, a historic farm on Tasmania’s Bruny Island. Completed in 2012, the corrugated iron structure was the first of two major building projects crafted by John Wardle Architects on the property.
After purchasing the farm, architect John Wardle and his wife Susan embarked on a long journey that saw the restoration and rejuvenation of the landscape. Before contemplating built forms, they focused on the stewardship of the land, planting nearly 10,000 trees with family, friends and staff of John Wardle Architects. It was only then that The Shearers Quarters began to take form.
A humble undertaking, The Shearers Quarters tells a story of Waterview’s past. A strong effort was made to incorporate sustainable building practices wherever possible, which meant a considered and patient approach to sourcing materials. Externally, corrugated iron recalls a traditional agricultural shed. Internally, the structure is completely sheathed in timber. Apple-box timber is used to line the walls of the bedrooms, a nod to the land’s previous employment as a commercial apple orchard.
Each space inside The Shearers Quarters remains simple and balanced. The space has room to breathe, with its only leading features a colourful bookshelf and a long, plank-like joinery piece that runs along the length of the living room – a moments pause honouring John’s collection of eclectic objects and fascination with the site’s history.
With much affection, Waterview and The Shearers Quarters have become an integral part of John Wardle Architects. Honouring craft and architectural practice, The Shearers Quarters both remembers its past and stands as a vision for the future.