Public Programmes

The Museum hosts a range of public programmes throughout the year. These events aim to foster conversations about Western Australian legal, political and social histories as well develop the Museum as a place of significance for the community.

Open House Perth

Saturday, 16 November – Sunday, 17 November 2019 | 10.00am to 5.00pm
The Old Court House Law Museum, Stirling Gardens, Perth
For more information, go to

The Old Court House Law Museum is excited to be part of the 2019 Open House Perth weekend line up!

Come and check out Perth’s oldest building nestled at the back of Stirling Gardens. The Old Court House was designed by Henry W Reveley, the Civil Engineer who drew the plans for all the early public buildings in Perth. The Old Court House has served many purposes since opening its doors in 1836 and continues to be an active community asset that sheds light into Perth’s social history.

Curator, Greg Sikich and the team of Museum volunteers will be on site all weekend to engage in conversation about the architectural details of this iconic heritage building. Rarely seen art works by Amy Heap and Hubert Smeed from the Museum Collection will also be on display to celebrate the building’s iconic architecture.

Hands on activities, such as our popular ‘Build the Old Court House’ craft activity and our ‘Guilty or Not Guilty’ court scene dress up will be up and running for some building inspired fun.

Proudly sponsored by

The Life and Music of Dom Rosendo Salvado

Wednesday, 15 May 2019 | 5.00pm – 7.00pm | Recommended 18+ | Bookings essential here via Eventbrite
$25.00 per person; tickets non refundable

The New Norcia mission was founded in March 1846. By late April, the community had exhausted their provisions and was at risk of starvation.

The colourful Spanish missionary Dom Rosendo Salvado and an Aboriginal companion walked 130 kilometres from the Victoria Plains to Perth to speak to Bishop Brady about their desperate situation. It was decided that a piano recital would be held at the Old Court House to raise money and on the evening of 1 May 1846, Salvado gave a three hour piano recital to a packed audience.

Join us at the Old Court House Law Museum for an evening of music, drinks and canapés as Father Robert Nixon, who currently resides at New Norcia, gives his own recital of Salvado’s music and chats about his remarkable life and achievements. The Museum will also be hosting a new temporary exhibition showcasing many rare and interesting objects related to Salvado and his life; these are on loan from New Norcia.

Fr. Robert Nixon is a Catholic priest, pianist, composer and monk of the Order of St. Benedict. He joined the Benedictine Community of New Norcia in 2013, where he serves as organist, liturgy co-ordinator and Director of the Institute for Benedictine Studies. In previous recitals, he has presented the complete keyboard works of Chopin, Brahms, J.P. Rameau and J.S. Bach. He was awarded his Fellowship of Trinity College, London, for harpsichord performance, and Fellowship of the London College of Music for research on the musical writings of the Venerable Bede.

Open Day at the Old Court House Law Museum

Sunday, 21 October 2018 | 11.30am – 4.00pm | Free Entry

The Law Society of Western Australia’s Old Court House Law Museum is the only law museum in Western Australia and one of only a handful worldwide. Housed in the Old Court House, the oldest building in the City of Perth, the Museum promotes understanding of the law, legal issues and the legal profession in Western Australia and preserves that history and cultural material for present and future generations.

The Museum encourages visitors to reflect on changing community values; to challenge beliefs about law and the interface between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal law and ultimately consider our relationship to individual and collective behaviour, society and ethics.

We encourage visitors to take part in the Museum’s Open Day and learn more about this hidden treasure.

See our newest exhibition From Law to War to Peace, which coincides with the centenary of the First World War armistice.

Heritage Conversation

From Law to War to Peace

Sunday, 21 October 2018 | 10.00am – 11.00am

Entry is free but bookings essential via from 5 October

A 1913 photo featuring a number of prominent Western Australian lawyers recently found in the Old Court House Law Museum collection inspired the Armistice exhibition to commemorate the 100 year anniversary of the end of World War One. Some of the individuals in the photo were unable to contribute to the war effort, some returned after active service and some never returned.

In this Heritage Conversation event the Museum Curator, Julianne Mackay, and military historian Robert Mitchell will tell the stories of some of the individuals in the photograph, both before, during and after their wartime experiences.

Proudly supported by

My Culture, My Story; Aboriginal Women Leaders in Law

On Friday, 18 May 2018, as part of the Law Society’s programme of events for Law Week, the Old Court House Law Museum hosted a panel discussion led by Deanne Fitzgerald, Senior Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisor at the Western Australian Museum. Deanne talked with a panel of Aboriginal women leaders in law, including Kelsi Forrest, Ashleigh Lindsay, Kate George and Sue Gordon, about their life and career experiences. Watch the videos below to find out more.

My Culture, My Story Video Review

Ashleigh Lindsay

Kelsi Forrest

Kate George

Dr Sue Gordon AM

School Holiday Programmes

Guilty or Not Guilty!

Free School Holiday Fun

1 October to 11 October 2019 | Open Tuesdays to Fridays, 10.00am to 4.00pm
The Old Court House Law Museum, Stirling Gardens, Perth
For more information, contact

Join us at the Old Court House Law Museum and take the stand by dressing up as a member of a court scene!

Step into character and pose in front of a selection of playful court room scenes inspired by the Old Court House Law Museum Collection.

Building The Old Court House!

Free School Holiday Fun

9 July to 19 July 2019 | Open Tuesdays to Fridays, 10.00am to 4.00pm
The Old Court House Law Museum, Stirling Gardens, Perth
For more information, contact

Join us at the Old Court House Law Museum to discover the architectural details of Perth’s oldest surviving building!

Decorate and create your own Old Court House to take home with you!

Proudly sponsored by:

Remembering the Anzacs

Write your own postcard

13 April to 28 April 2019 | Open Tuesdays to Fridays, 10.00am to 4.00pm
The Old Court House Law Museum, Stirling Gardens, Perth
For more information, contact

During the First World War, millions of postcards were handmade and sent around the world. Join us at the Old Court House Law Museum to write your own postcard, cast your vote in our conscription ballot and draw your own unique piece of trench art. Use our interactive touch screen to help with your ideas.

Proudly sponsored by:


Did they do it? Do what?

Free school holiday fun at Old Court House Law Museum, no bookings required
8 January to 1 February 2019
Tuesdays to Fridays, 10.00am to 4.00pm
Best suited to ages 4 to 12 years

Can you describe a suspect and create an identikit picture? Work with a partner and see whose drawing most resembles the suspect’s mug shot.

Take turns to describe your suspect, use the Tip sheet provided and prompt questions to make sure you gather as much information as possible.

Please note: children will be working with mug shots of real West Australian men and women taken in the 1920s and 1930s.

Proudly sponsored by the City of Perth


Treasure Hunt in the Stirling Gardens

Operating from the Old Court House Law Museum from Tuesday 9th to Thursday 25th January from 10am until 4pm, join us for a Treasure Hunt in the Stirling Gardens. The activity is available for two age groups, junior 3 to 6 years who search for carvings in the park and circle their picture and a treasure hunt for 7 to 12 year olds, who will search for items in Stirling Gardens to find the answers to the questions we have prepared. Once you find the answer you record the coordinates for this position and when all questions have been answered, you use a decipher sheet to find the mystery word and solve one last clue!

Bookings aren’t required, FREE event 10am to 4pm daily.
We are open Tuesday to Friday.


Keys to History

17 April – 27 April 2018 | Tuesdays – Fridays | 10.00am – 4.00pm

Come and explore the Old Court House Law Museum inside and out with our free school holiday activity, Keys to History.

Follow three easy steps to unlock the Museum’s secrets. Match the key colours to different coloured exhibition spaces at the Old Court House. The orange key is the museum exterior.

Then find the key photo of objects and items in each exhibition space and finally answer the key questions relating to the photo. Each side of the key has a different question.

There are two activities available depending on age. One is suitable for ages 4-7 and another for ages 7-12. The Museum is open Tuesday to Friday from 10.00am to 4.00pm.

Hands on with Forensic Science – Two interactive workshops

Monday, 2 July 2018 | 10.00am – 12.00pm and 1.00pm – 3.00pm  | Old Court House Law Museum

15 students max per session | Recommended for 8 to 12 years

Come along and immerse yourself in the world of forensic science at Curtin University’s school holiday program, hosted by the Old Court House Law Museum . Presentations by Professor Simon Lewis will introduce students to the capabilities and limitations within forensic science. Students can also experiment at the interactive workshops with real-life forensics methods including fingerprinting, ink analysis, microscopy and crime scene investigation.

These events are free but registration is essential. Students should bring a snack and water bottle.

A Beginner’s Guide to Forensic Science

Wednesday, 4 July 2018 | 11.00am to 12 noon | Old Court House Law Museum

In recent years forensic science has become a focus of popular television programs, which has led to a generally unrealistic view of forensic science. The consequences of this have been termed by some commentators the “CSI effect”. This presentation will give a broad introduction to forensic science and how it is used in the criminal justice system.

Recommended for 10 years and above

Max of 30 spaces available

Forensic Science Failures?

Tuesday, 10 July 2018 | 6.00pm – 7.00pm | Old Court House Law Museum

The criminal justice system without forensic science is unthinkable today. However over the last 40 years or so there have been cases where serious shortcomings in forensic science have led to significant miscarriages of justice. This presentation will give an overview of some of these cases, both high profile and less well known,  and will discuss the lessons that can be learned.

Recommended for 14 years and above

Max of 30 spaces