City Watch House

From 1909 until 1994, the former City Watch House operated as Melbourne’s central custody centre or ‘holding place’ for people arrested and awaiting their court date. For almost a century, every person arrested in Melbourne was lodged in the City Watch House opposite the Russell Street Police Station. 

The Watch House was built in 1909 and its original interior is complete in every respect.


Pack headphones and be QR Code ready!

Entry to the City Watch House includes access to QR codes which are scattered throughout the building.

To enjoy the trail, make sure you bring your own smart device with a functioning camera or reader app to scan the QR Codes located around the Watch House. We also recommend headphones so you can be fully immersed.