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Andrzejaczek, Tadeusz (1915–1987)

by K. (Charles) Sierakowski

This article was published in Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 17, (MUP), 2007

Tadeusz Andrzejaczek (1915-1987), architect, was born on 28 October 1915 at Czestochowa, Russian Poland, only son of Stanislaw Andrzejaczek, schoolteacher, and his wife Helena, née Schmidt. Orphaned at an early age, Tadeusz was brought up by his grandparents at Bydgoszcz, Poland, where he attended the local high school. He matriculated in 1934, and studied architecture at the Warsaw University of Technology until the outbreak of World War II. Interested in archaeology, he helped with excavations at the Iron Age settlement at Biskupin, and at King Stefan Bathory’s sixteenth-century castle at Grodno. He produced precise survey drawings of the sites.

When Germany invaded Poland in September 1939, Andrzejaczek, a reservist, was mobilised. Wounded and taken prisoner, he spent the rest of the war in prisoner-of-war camps in Germany. He was released in May 1945, and on 5 July joined the II Polish Corps, part of the British Eighth Army, in Italy. On 18 December 1945 in the Polish army chapel, Altamura, he married Maria Stanislawa Rutkowska, an officer in the Polish Home Army. Moving to England, he resumed his architectural studies at the Polish University College, London (Dipl.Ing-arch., 1951). On 30 September 1949 he was discharged from the army as an officer cadet. After passing the professional practice examination of the Royal Institute of British Architects in 1951, he started work with the architectural division, London County Council. He was naturalised on 2 February 1953, and next year became an associate of the RIBA.

The Andrzejaczeks, with their daughter, Krystyna, and son, Krzysztof, migrated to Australia, arriving at Fremantle on 2 January 1954. They disembarked in Sydney and travelled directly to Canberra. Finding employment with the Department of Works, Andrzejaczek produced architectural plans for the Northbourne Flats and for educational buildings. By 1958 he was in Adelaide, where he worked for Sir Arthur Stephenson and D. K. Turner, whose architectural practice specialised in the design of hospitals, and for Hassell, McConnell & Partners. On 4 January 1963 he was appointed principal assistant (design) in the Western Australian Public Works and Water Supply Department, Perth. He prepared development plans and designed buildings for the Royal Perth, Fremantle and King Edward Memorial hospitals. Other assignments included buildings for the Western Australian Institute of Technology, the astronomical observatory at Bickley and the Central Law Courts in St George’s Terrace.

Convinced that Perth needed a cultural centre, Andrzejaczek fostered the proposal with energy and determination and served on the planning committee formed in 1967 to oversee the establishment of the centre. As project architect from 1972 he supervised the design and construction of new buildings, and the modification of existing structures, to house the State’s art gallery, library and museum. The Perth Cultural Centre transformed the city and revitalised Northbridge and Forrest Place. Distinguished looking, socially motivated and highly cultured, he was described by his friend John Birman as `a dreamer and an idealist’ who would not `compromise on deeply felt principles’. Andrzejaczek retired in 1980. Survived by his wife and their two children, he died on 18 February 1987 in Perth and was cremated.

Select Bibliography

  • O. Budrewicz, W´sród Polskich Kangurów (1982)
  • Kurier Zachodni, Apr 1987, pp 8, 9
  • naturalisation certificate, item HO334/365 (Public Record Office, United Kingdom)
  • private information.

Citation details

K. (Charles) Sierakowski, 'Andrzejaczek, Tadeusz (1915–1987)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/andrzejaczek-tadeusz-12141/text21753, published first in hardcopy 2007, accessed online 15 December 2018.

This article was first published in hardcopy in Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 17, (MUP), 2007

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