Dwelling ("Avoca") | NSW Environment, Energy and Science

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Dwelling ("Avoca")

Item details

Name of item: Dwelling ("Avoca")
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Residential buildings (private)
Category: House
Primary address: 1 Fitzroy Street, Grafton, NSW 2460
Local govt. area: Clarence Valley


The property boundary
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
1 Fitzroy StreetGraftonClarence Valley  Primary Address

Statement of significance:

This unusual and interesting house is of both historic and aesthetic significance. Located on the river bank it has great visual appeal and can be clearly seen from the Grafton Rail and Road Bridge. Dating from the 1880s period with decorative elements from the 1890s its carved and fretted bargeboards are considered some of the best of Grafton's collection. It has been drawn by local artist G. Payne and appears in his publication " A Line on Grafton". Historically it is significant for its association with the Grafton bank manager Edward Chapman Lewington.
Date significance updated: 21 Jun 08
Note: The State Heritage Inventory provides information about heritage items listed by local and State government agencies. The State Heritage Inventory is continually being updated by local and State agencies as new information becomes available. Read the OEH copyright and disclaimer.


Physical description: Located on the riverbank this single storey weatherboard house has a gabled iron roof. Carved and fretted bargeboards and finials are a feature of the house. Skillion verandahs to all sides, partly infilled. Chimney and pots intact. Original cedar framed double hung windows; French windows to the south-east verandahs. Interior has lath and plaster walls and ceilings, and a c1900 Edwardian style Sicilian white marble mantel with hearth and grate intact. Internal doors are panelled cedar. Timber fence with iron and mesh gate which appears original. Property has expansive views over the river and towards the bridge. The garden is sensitively planted with a mature frangipani and more recent magnolia.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
Excellent condition
Date condition updated:09 Aug 05
Modifications and dates: Bullnosed verandah changed to skillion. 1964 new kitchen builder R.Graham. 1984 pergola.
Further information: This house has great visual appeal from both Fitzroy Street and the Grafton Railway bridge. From the bridge its setting on the riverbank can be truly appreciated and it helps create the image of approaching historic Grafton city.
Current use: Private Residence
Former use: Private Residence


Historical notes: Built c1889 for the bank manager Edward Chapman Lewington (G. Payne, 1982). It was subsequently owned by M. L. McLean, an engineer. Council property files show that the house (located on Section 7 Allotment 2) was owned by Cecily Robertson in 1964 and that a new kitchen and alterations to part of the verandah occurred at this time. By 1974 Mr & Mrs R. Burridge were the owners and they added a pergola behind the kitchen in 1994 (Daily Examiner 17/12/1985). The house is currently owned by Amanda Steiner. (Further historical research is warranted on this building).

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
4. Settlement-Building settlements, towns and cities Accommodation-Activities associated with the provision of accommodation, and particular types of accommodation – does not include architectural styles – use the theme of Creative Endeavour for such activities. (none)-
4. Settlement-Building settlements, towns and cities Towns, suburbs and villages-Activities associated with creating, planning and managing urban functions, landscapes and lifestyles in towns, suburbs and villages (none)-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
This house is historically significant and was built for Edward Chapman Lewington a bank manager in 1889.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
This unusual and interesting house is of both aesthetic and architectual significance. It has great visual appeal, being visible from the Bridge and its form is representative of the 1880s while its decorative elements belong to the 1890s. Its carved and fretted bargeboards are some of the best examples in Grafton's.
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
The site is likely to have archaeological potential.
SHR Criteria f)
Timber work is some of the best in Grafton.
Integrity/Intactness: Largely intact.
Assessment criteria: Items are assessed against the PDF State Heritage Register (SHR) Criteria to determine the level of significance. Refer to the Listings below for the level of statutory protection.

Recommended management:

This cottage makes a significant contribution to the Grafton Urban Conservation area and should remain individually listed.


Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Local Environmental Plan  10 Jun 11 2011-272 
Local Environmental Plan I56123 Dec 11 2011-701 
Within a conservation area on an LEP  15 Jan 88   
Within a conservation area on an LEP  10 Jun 11   
Within a conservation area on an LEPGrafton Heritage Conservation AreaC323 Dec 11 2011-701 
Heritage study     

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
National Trust Country Register  National Trust of Australia (NSW)  No
Grafton Community Heritage Study2004 J. Gardiner  Yes

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
WrittenG Jahn1982Conservation Policies fro the City of Grafton
WrittenG. Payne1982A Line on Grafton (Sketches of Grafton)
WrittenGrafton City Council1985Grafton Heritage Study - Inventory No 6.13
WrittenKelly, M ; Shields-Brown, I0National Trust of Australia (NSW)

Note: internet links may be to web pages, documents or images.

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(Click on thumbnail for full size image and image details)

Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: Local Government
Database number: 1640147

Every effort has been made to ensure that information contained in the State Heritage Inventory is correct. If you find any errors or omissions please send your comments to the Database Manager.

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