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About Hobart Convict Penitentiary
Step back in time and explore the dark history of Van Diemen’s land at Hobart Convict Penitentiary. Known as “the Tench” by its prisoners, this 1830s structure was designed by Civil Engineer John Lee Archer to house the growing number of convicts arriving in the colony. Over 50,000 male convicts passed through its barracks during its use. Though convict transportation has ceased, the grounds have since been repurposed for the Old Gaol and Supreme Court. Don’t miss the chance to witness this haunting piece of Australian history. Image courtesy Tourism Tasmania and National Trust Tasmania.
Step inside the walls of the Hobart Convict Penitentiary, a former 2-acre block enclosed by towering stone barriers. The cruciform-shaped complex holds a fascinating history, including a chapel with 36 solitary confinement cells beneath its floor. Though some of the cells were deemed inhumane in 1847 due to poor ventilation and lack of light, this site is significant in Tasmania’s past. Discover it for yourself with this stunning image from Tourism Tasmania and National Trust Tasmania.
What to do at Hobart Convict Penitentiary
Discover the fascinating story behind Hobart’s Convict Penitentiary Chapel — a place where free inhabitants and prisoners worshipped side-by-side in the early 1800s. While wealthy locals could reserve cedar pews for an annual fee and enter via a grand staircase, prisoners arrived via different wings and made themselves comfortable on hard, wooden benches. Though the chapel was never consecrated as a church, it still hosted various religious ceremonies and events, including funerals, weddings, and baptisms. Find out more about this historic site and its unique place in Tasmania’s past.
Explore the haunted history of Hobart Convict Penitentiary with a guided tour that will take you through eerie underground tunnels, solitary cells, and the infamous gallows. For an even more immersive experience, try the Chapel Ghost Tour, walk along the path of the condemned with The Hobart Gallows Walk, or brave the Paranormal Investigation. And don’t miss “Pandemonium – The Convict Film Experience” for a glimpse into the harsh reality of prison life. Come face to face with Tasmania’s dark past at Hobart Convict Penitentiary.
One local company in Hobart that is involved in this tourist attraction;
Name: Plasterers Hobart
Address: 12 Castlereagh Court, Lenah Valley TAS 7008
Phone Number: (03) 6146 1733