Illaroo | NSW Environment, Energy and Science

Culture and heritage



Item details

Name of item: Illaroo
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Residential buildings (private)
Category: House
Primary address: 96 Shirley Road, Wollstonecraft, NSW 2065
Local govt. area: North Sydney
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
96 Shirley RoadWollstonecraftNorth Sydney  Primary Address

Statement of significance:

Fine example of a large residence in the Federation Queen Anne/Arts and Crafts style, designed by Donald Esplin, one of the major architects of the late Federation period. Representative of the dominant form of early development in the vicinity that has been largely replaced by apartment buildings.

Heritage Inventory sheets are often not comprehensive, and should be regarded as a general guide only. Inventory sheets are based on information available, and often do not include information on landscape significance, interiors or the social history of sites and buildings. Inventory sheets are updated by Council as further information becomes available. An inventory sheet with little information may simply indicate that there has been no building work done to the item recently: it does not mean that items are not significant. Further research is always recommended as part of preparation of development proposals for heritage items, and is necessary in preparation of Heritage Impact Assessments and Conversation Management Plans, so that the significance of heritage items can be fully assessed prior to submitting development applications.
Date significance updated: 10 Dec 13
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.


Designer/Maker: Donald Esplin
Physical description: Large two storey, brick house with multi-gabled terracotta tiled roof. Upper floor is predominately roughcast rendered, with window quoins articulated by revealing the base brickwork and the brick arch lintels exposed. Other features include rusticated sandstone sills and lintels, timber shingles to verandah spandrels on octagonal bay window to the ground floor and a three faceted bay window with singled, faceted roof.
This building was designed in the Federation Queen Anne/Arts and Crafts style.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
Current use: Private Residence


Historical notes: Sands Sydney and Suburban Directories list Donald Esplin (architect) and his wife Daisy as the occupiers of 'Illaroo' from 1909 till 1918. The house is therefore likely to have been constructed in 1908, to a design by Donald Esplin (later part of the architectural firm Esplin & Mould, known for the construction of the Astor Apartments in Macquarie Street, Sydney). Early photographs of the interior and exterior of the house, taken soon after its completion, are contained in the publication 'Our Beautiful Homes: Australia's Upper Middle Class in the Edwardian Age' (circa 1910).

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]
Associative Local. Representative Local.
SHR Criteria b)
[Associative significance]
Local significance
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
Associative Regional. Representative Regional.
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
Associative Local. Representative Local.
SHR Criteria f)
Rare Aesthetically Locally
SHR Criteria g)
This item is assessed as historically representative locally. This item is assessed as aesthetically representative regionally. This item is assessed as socially representative locally.
Integrity/Intactness: Good
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.


Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Local Environmental Plan I111302 Aug 13   

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
North Sydney Heritage Study Review19930955Tony Brassil, Robert Irving, Chris Pratten, Conybeare MorrisonTB August 1992 Yes
North Sydney Heritage Review2002 John Oultram  No

References, internet links & images


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

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Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: Local Government
Database number: 2180955

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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