Architect Personal DetailsArchitectural works in South Australia
Firms or Professional PartnershipsBibliographic Sources

Architect Personal Details



First name

Cecil William







Cecil William Peters (Bill) was born on 18 April 1925 in the rural town of Forbes, New South Wales. He spent his formative years enjoying sports and the many outdoor activities a rural life can provide. Having completed his high school education, and with World War 2 continuing apace, he enlisted in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) in July 1943. Based in Australia and Canada, he trained as a pilot attaining the level of Flight Sergeant before demobilising in October 1945. On returning from the war, in 1946 Bill was married to his sweetheart Patricia, moving to Adelaide soon after. There, the family grew to eventually include five children (Peters to di Santo pers comm. 23 January 2009).

Having considered his career options, Peters decided on architecture and soon after his arrival in Adelaide enrolled at the School of Mines and Industries. During his studies and for a number of years thereafter, he was articled to the Chief Architect of the South Australian Housing Trust, John W Overall. Whilst working at the Housing Trust, Peters gained much valuable experience under the tutelage of their many talented architects. Having graduated in 1954, he became an associate member of the Royal Australian Institute of Architects (RAIA) in 1955 and a Fellow in 1970. In 1957, following a commission to build the Tintinara Hotel, Peters embarked on his career in private practice. Being well trained and skilled, his career was prolific and comprised a number of projects in the commercial, educational and ecclesiastical areas, as well as a small number of residential commissions (Peters to di Santo pers comm. 23 January 2009).

The late 1950s through to the early 1980s saw the Catholic Church in Adelaide experiencing a period of exceptional growth. Peters’ association with the Catholic Church resulted in many commissions, further adding to his growing reputation. His many fine churches include St Matthew’s, Bridgewater (1966); St John Vianney, Burnside (1962); St Alphonsus, Millicent (1966) and the chapel at St Michael’s College, Henley Beach – the latter being one of his personal favourites. Many of the commissions were for educational spaces and facilities at various Catholic colleges and schools including Mercedes College, Springfield; Christian Brothers College, Wakefield Street, Adelaide; St Michael’s College, Henley Beach; St Catherine’s School, Stirling and St Joseph’s School, Tranmere. Other works included a convent for the Sisters of St Joseph, Kadina and presbyteries at Semaphore, Prospect and Dulwich (Peters to di Santo pers comm. 23 January 2009).

Peters’ commercial commissions were numerous and varied and were located throughout South Australia. They included several new bank branch buildings as well as renovations for the Commonwealth Bank, a number of small medical centres, clothing factory, printing works and foundries at Mannum and Thebarton. He designed office buildings at Keswick, Mannum and Salisbury. New construction and renovations to hotels included the Tintinara Hotel, Tintinara; Pier Hotel, Pt Lincoln and Commercial Hotel, Jamestown. Other commercial projects were a supermarket at Henley Beach, showrooms in the city of Adelaide, community halls and child care centres (Peters to di Santo, pers comm. 23 January 2009).

Peters’ residential portfolio includes, in addition to his own homes, the “Poclamacca” house in Second Valley as well as several other commissions in suburban Adelaide, Bordertown in the South-East of South Australia and Pt Victoria on the Yorke Peninsula (Peters to di Santo pers comm. 23 January 2009).

In addition to his affiliation with the RAIA, Peters contributed to the community for a number of years, as a member of the management committees of the Home for Incurables and Guide Dogs for the Blind, both in Adelaide and Queensland.

Toward the end of his career in the late 1980s, a commission in Queensland for a valued client saw Peters relocate to Brisbane where he continued working in private practice until his eventual retirement. He is now (2009) living in suburban Brisbane with his wife Patricia. Whilst Bill has long since put away his drawing board, the Peters’ name however, continues to shine in the architectural field. Having followed his father into the profession, son David is at this time (2009), a director with the practice of Conrad Gargett in Brisbane.

Aldo di Santo

Citation details
di Santo, Aldo, 'Peters, Cecil William', Architecture Museum, University of South Australia, 2008, Architects of South Australia: []




Architectural works in South Australia

Name Suburb Year Designed
St Frances De Sales College Mt. Barker 1957
Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Church Henley Beach 1958
Church of the Good Shepherd Clearview 1963
Modern Printing Ltd Offices Keswick 1965
Star of the Sea Parish School Henley Beach 1965
Parochial House Tailem Bend 1965
St Anthony’s School Edwardstown 1967
Presbytery Semaphore 1971
Child Care Centre Stirling 1973
Sisters of St Joseph Convent Kadina 1976
St Peter Claver Church Dulwich 1964
St John Vianney Burnside

Firms or Professional Partnerships

Name Dates Worked
South Australian Housing Trust 1954-1957 
Sole Practitioner 1957- 

Bibliographic Sources


Page, M. (1986) Sculptors in Space: South Australian Architects 1836-1986, RAIA (SA), Adelaide.

The Builder (Adelaide) (later South Australian Builder), various dates, 1955-1988.
‘South Australian Chapter’, Year Book of the Royal Australian Institute of Architects 1955-1973.

Southern Cross, Catholic Church Weekly, various dates, 1955-1972
St John’s Plympton: Various Commemorative Opening Articles, Southern Cross, July 1965, pp. 17-20

Di Santo, A. (2008) ‘The Changing Face of Worship’, Unpublished Architectural Research 2 thesis. (Copy held in Architecture Museum, University of South Australia)
Loren, M. G. (2003) Places of Worship – Churches and Chapels in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Adelaide, (Vol 1 – 4). Unpublished. (Copy held in the Catholic Church Archives, Adelaide)

Peters to Di Santo 23 January 2009

‘Nominal Roll’, accessed online 14th December 2008 at

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