A grand old lady who has lovingly been restored to her former grace and beauty.
Originally home to the first railway station master, this splendid home boasts soaring ceilings, beautifully polished jarrah floorboards, original deep skirting boards and picture rails with an impressive 8-metre-long hallway. The old-world charm blends perfectly with today’s modern lifestyle, retaining the dreamy and romantic feel of this very special property.
What will you make it? A warm home, a gallery, tearoom or bed & breakfast? The opportunities abound within this incredibly versatile beauty.
Homes from circa 1900’s filled with delightful stories and interesting history might not be everyone’s cup of tea (hold that thought) but oh my goodness, a beloved treasure like this could change your mind forever, so allow me to explain the enchantment – and golden opportunity…
Below is a short summary, for those only interested in the facts, followed by a short history of this home’s place in the story of Mt Barker.
- The house was built circa 1900, so it’s about 120 majestic years old
- The fully enclosed block is a very decent 767 m2 with cottage gardens in the front and lawns at the back
- Polished jarrah floors and lofty high ceilings
- Original jarrah picture rails and deep skirting boards
- It’s in an extremely good condition and has undergone extensive, yet sensitive renovations in keeping with its status and era
- No, it’s not heritage listed
- There are 8 “rooms” in total which can be configured to suit your requirements: formal lounge, bedroom 1, kitchen, bathroom with toilet, separate toilet, bedroom 2, 3rd bedroom or dining room or 2nd living area, large open space next to kitchen (good for casual dining area) and a laundry/storage area. (See rough pic under floor plans for the layout). You also have a big front patio, a large bricked side patio, a lovely backyard and a few small, old sheds.
- The bathroom is wheel-chair friendly
- The gorgeous central hallway is roughly 8 meters long by 1.5 m wide, typical of this dreamy, bygone era
- The property is situated next to the carpark that leads to the well-maintained Memorial Park on its right and the Visitor’s Centre on the left (1 house up). It’s close to Plantagenet Wines and only a 2 min walk from IGA and town.
- A realistic, recent rental estimate is $240 per week as a residential home (Investors, take note!)
- There’s a functional commercial kitchen with near-new cupboards and solid wood benchtops (and there might be a secret surprise behind one of the partitioned walls)
- 2 Rooms have new built-in slow combustion heaters tastefully positioned within original fireplaces while the chimney in the main bedroom has been blocked and partitioned
- First land use is residential and the second land-use – commercial-shop, offering versatility and income potential
- It used to be a very popular tea room and art gallery to the delight of both local residents and tourist (handy to have the carpark next door if you want to run a business or if you have guests). It would also make a charming Bed & Breakfast!
- Septic tanks and bottled gas
- Electric HWC
- And yes, there is an outdoor building with a dunny (how can you call it anything else) – just put a toilet in again and hook it up to the septic system.
- Rates and taxes $1,412.57 per year
- We’ve completed a professional timber pest inspection on 6 October – all clear.
- This rare property represents great value at $219,000 – whether you’re a first home buyer or not, investor or looking for somewhere you can run a small business from. This is your chance.
- Private viewings through the exclusive agent only, so please call me on 0410 631 335.
You can definitely see and feel that this home has been well-loved and treasured by different owners for over a century. Each owner contributed to its continuity, felt optimistic about the future and faithfully loved and protected this property.
A brief look at the history of this home and Mt Barker:
One of the sources I’ve used for my write-up is from a book called: Plantagenet “Rich and Beautiful…” by Rhoda Glover. She beautifully describes the full history of the Shire for anyone interested.
Rhoda Glover: “Mr William Seth Ferry (born 1860), was appointed the first railway stationmaster at Mt Barker and worked on the 240-mile line between Albany and Beverley.” In her book she posted a lovely picture of him, taken in 1898.
Locals proclaim that 11 Albany Highway was William Seth Ferry, the first station master’s, home for many years. Apparently, the marks on the wall in the (now) separate indoor toilet were where he hung the ticket/money boxes while he dispersed railway tickets through the window. William, like others after, left his mark on this home.
Quoted from Mt Barker-Plantagenet-Shire-Brief-History: “Mount Barker was first explored in late 1829, 4 years after the establishment of King George Sound at what is now Albany. Mt Barker was named after Captain Collett Barker, the settlement’s commandant.
The first settler in the district was Sir Richard Spencer, followed by Mr and Mrs Egerton Warburton. Following the 1914-1918 war, the discharged soldiers were offered low-interest loans to purchase 160-acre blocks of land in the Plantagenet district. In 1918 the Mt Barker Co-operative was established as Plantagenet was considered the largest producer of apples in Australia with the fruit being shipped out of Albany to England and other countries. At the time the co-op had the largest cool stores in Australia and Merryup Orchard was the largest orchard. Early settlers from 1830 had established farms with much of the land being used for dairy, wheat and fruit. In 1919, just one year after the end of the first World War, the town was badly affected by the “Spanish flu”. It wasn’t until 1936 that the town got its first hospital.
Mt Barker is the largest town in the Plantagenet district and is located just 50 km from Albany.”
The Mount Barker railway was established in 1892 (Wikipedia). Rhoda Glover: “The opening of the railway led to the influx of a permanent population into the townsite. As well as the station master and his family and the telegraphist, the gangers and linesmen of the railway brought their families while the descendants of ganger Albert Gambley who was stationed in Mt Barker in 1894 still live in the town and district. The railway also made communication with Albany and Perth easier and more people came to live and work on the surrounding farms. It meant too that farm produce was more readily and easily disposed of. Farmers now carried wool (and fruit) to the railway station in Mt Barker for transport by rail – instead of carting it by road to Albany – and had their stores brought in in the same manner.”