90-year-old Robert Brittain is a long-term resident at Bethanie Illawong in Hamilton Hill. He initially occupied one of the 29 Independent Living Units, then, as a retiree, moved into the 39 bed Aged Care Home as his needs increased. But what makes Robert such a special resident is that some 30 years ago, he was the design architect of the entire Hamilton Hill site, a job he enjoyed and was very proud of.
Robert says, “The lovely Illawong site had many Tuart trees and old Grass trees and belonged to Homeswest. They wanted a scheme to cater for elderly pensioners and so they sought out architects Kidd and Povey, who had extensive experience with accommodation for the aged, and worked in conjunction with Churches of Christ Homes & Community Services, who changed their name to Bethanie in 2007.”
Robert studied in Adelaide and then came to Perth after finishing his studies. He worked for several architecture firms and had gained quite a solid reputation when Kidd & Povey asked Robert if he would join them. He then went on to design the Retirement Village and Aged Care Home that is now known as Bethanie Illawong.
Robert adds, “Brian Kidd was leading in architectural design for the elderly at the time. There were several outstanding features and we always incorporated certain elements such as single level design with no steps, ample windows to offer views in all directions and cozy independent spaces offering people their own living accommodation.”
Bethanie Illawong Aged Care Home Manager Caroline Covich adds, “Robert is such an interesting man, such a great character to have around and he just loves to reminisce on his architectural career which he is very proud of.”
Find out more about Bethanie.