Primrose House | NSW Environment & Heritage

Culture and heritage

Heritage

Primrose House

Item details

Name of item: Primrose House
Other name/s: Scarborough Hotel, Victorian Style, Villa
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Residential buildings (private)
Category: Villa
Primary address: 190 Russell Avenue, Dolls Point, NSW 2219
Parish: St George
County: Cumberland
Local govt. area: Rockdale
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
190 Russell AvenueDolls PointRockdaleSt GeorgeCumberlandPrimary Address

Statement of significance:

Originally built in 1891 as the Scarborough Hotel, Primrose House is historically significant as part of the development of the Botany Bay Pleasure grounds in Sans Souci. It also is significant for the role it played in its use as a hospital for the war wounded from 1913 until 1936. This villa is aesthetically significant as a major landmark located in its original garden setting of mature Phoenix Palm trees and Norfolk Island Pines in the Sans Souci area. Primrose House is a rare example of a surviving Victorian holiday hotel.
Date significance updated: 12 Aug 10
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.

Description

Construction years: 1891-
Physical description: A Large Victorian two storey brick and stucco building with many additions on a prominent corner block facing Botany Bay and Cooks Park. The original timber verandas have been enclosed but the house has retained much of its original site and the grounds include some early plantings, now mature and a major feature in the locality.
Gable fronted facade facing Malua Street with battened gable end has a Juliette balcony and retains its decorative detailing. Timber posts and brackets to the veranda appear to be original. Originally the building would have been viewed from the promenade of Botany Bay and Cook Park. Two mature Canary Island Palms flank the entry path.

Primrose House was been used as an annex of St George Hospital from 1936 up until at least 199. The ground floor accommodated 24 convalescent in-patients from St-George Hospital requiring extended care and/or rehabilitation. On the first floor 22 patients were accommodated up until the 1980's when the upper storey was no longer deemed to comply with fire regulations. The facility was staffed during that period by St George Hospital staff. Also within Primrose House were in-patient ancillary facilities such as recreation, kitchen, therapy facilities. The use of Primrose House as an in-patient facility ceased around 1992. Since then the building has been used as a day hospital for 30 frail, elderly. To facilitate this change in use a DA was approved for an outdoor secure garden, new entry lobby in rear yard off the car park for patient arriving by bus. A paved area for the Day Hospital Bus and car parking for staff with 20 car spaces. Internally the building was to be painted and have new floor coverings as well as an upgrade of lighting, heating and security.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
Good despite major alterations to the fabric. Building needs some maintenance for example repairs are needed to the roof on western side.
Date condition updated:14 Apr 10
Modifications and dates: Alterations: Large two storey addition higher than the eaves of the original building in south western corner facing Russell Street, possibly for fire stairs. Similar addition to the northern end of the building but below the eaves in height. Veranda has been enclosed on west, south and north. It is possible the veranda wrapped the corner prior to the intrusion of the new stair well. There are new smaller buildings within the grounds on the eastern side of the building. Entry is now from Russell Street via a concrete ramp. Access appears to be an issue which has dominated the building for some time, with ramps and additions to accommodate them in various locations. Building retains its setback on Malua Street but has had a car park and additions built on the eastern side.

BA-1990/289 : HOSPITAL ADDITION TO NURSING HOME CLASS IXb
BA-1991/811 : COMMERCIAL BUILDING ALTER AGED DAY CARE CENTRE CLASS VI & V
CD-2003/3 : INSTALL AUTOMATIC SIGNALLING EQUIPMENT TO PROVIDE A REMOTE FIRE ALARM CONNECTION
DA-1991/227: CHANGE PART OF GROUND FLOOR USE FROM IN-PATIENT HOSPITAL TO DAY HOSPITAL
Current use: Hospital
Former use: Hotel

History

Historical notes: The land on which this house was built was first auctioned from Crown Land to John Betts on 30th April 1840.
In 1885 a group of land speculators lobbied to have a tramway built between Kogarah Station and SansSouci via Scarborough Park. They were successful and in 1887 the Sans Souci Estate was auctioned.

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
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 Botany Bay Pleasureground-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
Originally built in 1891 as the Scarborough Hotel, Primrose House is historically significant as part of the development of the Botany Bay Pleasure grounds in Sans Souci. It also is significant for the role it played in its use as a hospital for the war wounded from 1913 until 1936.
SHR Criteria b)
[Associative significance]
Does not meet this criterion.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
This villa is aesthetically significant as a major landmark located in its original garden setting of mature Phoenix Palm trees and Norfolk Island Pines in the Sans Souci area.
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
Primrose House has been a health care facility for the majority of its life and may there have some significance for its staff and/or patients. This is yet to be demonstrated.
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
Further research may reveal the potential for evidence of the early use as the Scarborough hotel.
SHR Criteria f)
[Rarity]
Primrose House is a rare example of a surviving Victorian holiday hotel located in its original garden setting of mature Phoenix palms and Norfolk Island Pines.
SHR Criteria g)
[Representativeness]
Does not meet this criterion.
Integrity/Intactness: The building has been extensively modified but its original form is 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.

Listings

Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Local Environmental Plan  25 Aug 00 109 
Local Environmental PlanRockdale LEP 2011I19005 Dec 11   
Heritage study     

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
Rockdale Heritage Study19917Meredith Walker and Terry Kass  No
Rockdale Heritage Inventory Review2010 Louise Thom  Yes

References, internet links & images

None

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: 2330007


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