Lincluden - residential flat building, sandstone retaining wall and balustrade | NSW Environment, Energy and Science

Culture and heritage


Lincluden - residential flat building, sandstone retaining wall and balustrade

Item details

Name of item: Lincluden - residential flat building, sandstone retaining wall and balustrade
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Residential buildings (private)
Category: Block of Flats
Primary address: 12 Fairfax Road, Bellevue Hill, NSW 2023
Local govt. area: Woollahra
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
12 Fairfax RoadBellevue HillWoollahra  Primary Address

Statement of significance:

The residence Lincluden at 12 Fairfax Road Bellevue Hill is of local significance by virtue of its aesthetic form, being a good example of large Federation Art & Crafts Style residence and associated landscaping designed by architect Harry C. Kent in 1896. As one of the few remaining residences from the first phase of development within Fairfax Road, the residence is a rare demonstration of the forms and styles employed by socially established members of Sydney’s working professions who took up residence at Bellevue Hill at the turn of the 20th century. The residence was constructed as the final home of Professor Thomas Peter Anderson Stuart, foundation Professor of Medicine at the University of Sydney who was knighted in 1914.

The residence was noted both for its interior detailing and external landscaped terraces overlooking Double Bay and utilizing the steep slope of the site in a picturesque garden setting. The site recalls the grand residences of the Arts & Crafts Movement constructed on dramatic settings in the United Kingdom. Despite alteration and internal division resulting from conversion to flats in 1920 and progressive subdivision of the former landscaped grounds, the residence retains substantial detailing from the time of initial construction. Later construction of an additional residence and residential flat building within the former grounds of the residence have impacted upon the immediate curtilage of the residence, but retained the core aesthetic form and site relationship. The residence has further significance being the earliest of a remaining group of late 19th/early 20th century residences defining the lower side of Fairfax Road overlooking Double Bay.
Date significance updated: 05 May 06
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: Harry Chambers Kent
Builder/Maker: Unknown
Construction years: 1896-1897
Physical description: The residence is of face brick, formerly tuck pointed and now painted, with cedar shingle cladding to upper levels, projecting verandahs and a Marseilles pattern tile roof of hipped and gable form with tall brick chimneys having corbelled tops and terra cotta chimney pots. Terra cotta shingle awning roofs extend over timber framed and shingle clad projecting bays and balconies although much of the terra cotta shingle has been replaced with glazed terra cotta tile. Former open verandahs to the north-western elevation have been enclosed with shingle pattern pressed metal sheet and timber framed glazing. Original turned timber verandah posts and brackets remain to the lower ground floor supporting a continuous ripple iron clad awning. This is documented as having been previously clad in timber shingles.

Additions and alterations included a new painted brick garage to the south western corner and alterations to the upper gable roof forming an additional loft area with verandahs open to the north west, screened by timber lattice of a 1990s Post Modernist Style. Other recent works include new stone stairs to the eastern end, new fencing to Fairfax Road set above the original low brick, timber fence and new sliding timber gates to the western side driveway accessing a paved court between the building and the retaining wall to the Fairfax Road frontage. A central stair provides access to the top apartment. [Maher]

Interiors have been substantially altered, with new internal layouts, finishes and detailing.
To the north-west the site retains a highly ornate sandstone balustrade. This is documented in early photographs set above a sandstone retaining wall and lawn tennis court. The balustrade incorporates turned wine glass balusters, stone capping and large ornamental urns. Whilst in some sections damaged and partially removed, the assembly remains substantially intact.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
The building is in fair condition with much original internal detailing removed together with original terracing and ground works within the immediate vicinity of the house. External finishes have been partly replaced in an unsympathetic manner.
Modifications and dates: Major alterations include:
1920 Alterations dividing the residence into two residential flats –work carried out by Halligan & Wilton.
1927 Construction of new dwelling to north western corner of grounds designed by Wardell & Dennis.
1937 Residential flat building to eastern side of grounds designed by Eric Pitt.
1938 Construction of garages to Fairfax Road frontage.
1950 Construction of new dwelling approved. This does not appear to have been carried out as there is no identification of an additional residence on the original site.
1959 Alterations and additions within the main building.
1991 Alterations and additions within the main building associated with further subdivision into four flats.
1994 Alterations and additions to interiors of flats.
1997 Alterations and additions to flat in upper gable roof.
Further information: The residence forms a key element of an identifiable group to the lower side of Fairfax Road which have cohesive forms and a related historical association with consolidation of the isolated gentlemen’s villas built across the northern Bellevue Hill slopes.

Comparative assessment
Comparison with other residences substantially influenced by Arts & Crafts and American East Coast Shingle styles, including those of M B Halligan, in the immediate vicinity reveals this to be a building noted for its informality and relationship to its setting. Documentary evidence supports the residence having been characterised by a loose plan form and irregular profile deferring to the quality of its landscaped surrounds and casual atmosphere generated by layered verandahs set within the rambling roof forms. Comparisons may be made with Horbury Hunt’s residences, although Lincluden is more closely related to its topography than Hunt’s work.

As the original residence in Fairfax Road and home of a noted figure in Australian history, the residence served to establish the social and aesthetic standard of later development.
Current use: Residential flats
Former use: Residential flats


Historical notes: The site of 12 Fairfax Road Bellevue Hill is located on the northern slope of a ridgeline identified as Ghinigulla by the indigenous Wangal clan prior to European settlement. The ridgeline takes the name Bellevue Hill from the naming of a lookout point to the southern end as Belle Vue by Governor Macquarie in 1820. The site was part of 190 acres granted to Capt. John Piper by Governor Macquarie in 1820. Piper’s near a 1500 acre estate was conveyed to Solomon Levey and Daniel Cooper in 1826 following Piper’s insolvency.

Establishment of gentleman’s villas in the area commenced along the route of the South Head Road in the 1840’s (notably Waverley House). With completion of the New South Head Road in the early 1840’s and the survey of cross routes to Old South Head Road in 1846, villas were constructed along the northern slopes of Bellevue Hill during the late 1850’s beginning with James Fairfax’s Ginagulla in 1858 and Edwin Tooth’s Cranbrook. In 1847 Daniel Cooper became sole owner of the Cooper Estate. Daniel Cooper willed his estate to a nephew Daniel Cooper, a resident of London with little interest in development. Cooper in turn left the still largely undeveloped lands to his sons Daniel and William. The proviso that the lands be held until the sons turned twenty-one, saw large areas released on 99-year leases at low rental. Under Daniel Cooper III’s instructions, sales of his Bellevue Hill holdings commenced in 1883. Sales did not accelerate until the Bellevue Hill tram service of the 1890’s facilitated regular commuting. The first residences in the immediate vicinity of the current site were John Fairfax’s Ghinagulla constructed to the south-east of the current site and Colebrook constructed in the 1860’s for William Augustine Duncan.

Fairfax Road was established after 1893. The first residence, Lincluden ,was constructed for Professor Thomas Peter Anderson Stuart and designed by Harry Chambers Kent in 1896. Kent, a well-known architect and president of the Institute of Architects, had in 1886 designed the nearby residence Caerleon in association with the English architect Maurice B Adams, noted for his Arts & Crafts Style residences.

Thomas Peter Anderson Stuart was born in Dumfries Scotland in 1856 and graduated with highest distinctions in Medicine at the University of Edinburgh in 1880. On arrival in Sydney in 1883, he became Professor of Anatomy and Physiology. Professor Anderson Stuart, was appointed to establish the inaugural School of Medicine at the University of Sydney assisted by (Sir) Alexander MacCormick. He also established the School of Dentistry (1901) and the Department of Veterinary Sciece (1909). Professor Stuart was a Fellow of the University of Sydney Senate (1883-1920). From 1901 he was honorary secretary, later Chairman of Royal Prince Alfred Hospital. He held many presidencies of medical or community organisations such as the Royal Zoological Society of NSW and was a founding member of the British Red Cross Society. Professor Stuart was knighted in 1914.

His residence was set within extensive grounds extending down to New South Head Road and incorporating terraced gardens and a lawn tennis court overlooking Double Bay. These became the site of a later subdivision. Lincluden provided the first residential development in Fairfax Road. It was followed by residences constructed at the beginning of the 20th century to the upper side of the road and by a group of three to the east near the junction with Trahlee Road, identified as the residences St Kieran’s ( later Chislehurst and now 22 Fairfax Rd), Wamba (26 Fairfax Road now demolished) and Winburn, also now demolished. These properties and residences to the upper side of Fairfax Road exhibited distinctive Federation Arts & Crafts styling.

Following Professor Anderson Stuart’s death in 1920, his wife, Lady Anderson Stuart, had Lincluden converted to two residential flats in 1920, the work being carried out by the architectural practice of Halligan & Wilton. Maurice Bernard Halligan designed and resided at Winburn to the east of Lincluden. The conversion of Lincluden included construction of new access stairs to the upper floor flat from Fairfax Road and external stairs linking the flat to the eastern grounds of the residence.

By 1923 lands to the east and west of Lincluden were subdivided. Those to the east formed four sites within Fossberg’s Bellevue Hill Estate and those to the west forming nine sites within the grounds of the former villa Colebrook. The villa remained on one site. In 1926 a battleaxe subdivision was formed to the north-western corner of Lincluden enabling construction of a new Inter-war Mediterranean style residence designed by architects Wardell & Dennis. Further subdivision occurred in 1937 when the eastern side of the grounds was developed as a three storey residential flat building to the design of Eric C Pitt. Two further sites were subdivided to the New South Head Road frontage.

Lincluden has remained as residential flats with ongoing alterations including replacement of original roof tiles and terra cotta shingles with glazed terra cotta tiles that conceal its character from the Fairfax Road frontage.

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. Housing - Suburban Expansion-
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 Creative endeavour-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
The site at 12 Fairfax Road retains historical significance as part of the initial subdivision of the Cooper Estate established in conjunction with Fairfax Road which led to consolidation of the open lands about the isolated gentlemen’s villas on the northern end of Bellevue Hill during the early 20th century and inter-war periods.

Lincluden provided the first residential construction in Fairfax Road and, with its terraced gardens, tennis court, grand scale and eminent owner, served to establish the social and aesthetic standard of later development.
SHR Criteria b)
[Associative significance]
The site at 12 Road Bellevue Hill has general association with the early members of colonial society, including Captain John Piper and the Cooper family. The residence Lincluden has significant historical association with the leaseholder (Sir) Professor Anderson Stuart, the inaugural Professor of Anatomy and Physiology and founding head of the School of Medicine at the University of Sydney. The residence also retains significant association with the works of its designer, noted architect Harry Chambers Kent.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
The site at 12 Fairfax Road Bellevue Hill retains aesthetic significance as a demonstration of the aesthetic preferences of the Federation Arts & Crafts style applied to a large freestanding residence orientated to the harbour and accessed from its rear street frontage to Fairfax Road. Whilst substantially resurfaced and altered externally and internally the residence retains the core form of its initial design, which has been acknowledged in subsequent additions. The site also retains elements of the original terraced gardens, which gave rise to the title Lincluden Gardens and reflected English precedent in the treatment of landscaped grounds to Arts & Crafts residences overlooking spectacular scenery.
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
The site and residence at 12 Fairfax Road Bellevue Hill do not demonstrate strong or special association with a particular community or social group in Woollahra for social, cultural or spiritual reasons.
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
The residence at 12 Fairfax Road Bellevue Hill whilst incorporating extensive replacement of cladding to roofs and awnings, demonstrates the high level of technical skill in construction of the Federation period common to residences of the Federation era within Bellevue Hill. The technical and research significance of the site is therefore typical to the period rather than a benchmark or reference site.
SHR Criteria f)
The residence Lincluden at 12 Fairfax Road Bellevue Hill and its associated residential group represented a type always of limited incidence in Sydney due to cost and size.
SHR Criteria g)
The residence Lincluden at 12 Fairfax Road Bellevue Hill demonstrates the principal characteristics of large freestanding residences constructed in the Federation Arts & Crafts Style within suburbs favoured by established society of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Integrity/Intactness: Despite alteration and construction of new works within the immediate curtilage, the residence Lincluden at 12 Fairfax Road retains the core form and aesthetic composition of a substantial Federation Arts & Crafts styled residence typifying development of Bellevue Hill in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Additions carried out in forms and materials sympathetic to the original construction have maintained the external integrity of the residence. Interiors are of varying periods and stylistic influences retaining substantial elements of the original decoration.
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:

Conservation policy In order to maintain significance of the building and its contributing setting, all original fabric and external finishes to the building are considered important and should be retained in the original relationship to the building. Maintenance should be limited to conservation of existing original fabric and finishes and of sympathetic supporting fabric of later addition. Alterations should be limited to removal of unsympathetic additions and modifications in particular those to the upper roof area, and construction of works highly sympathetic to the form, design and detail of the original residence and its landscape setting. This approach should extend to the grounds and include the long term conservation of the rear north facing terrace and associated stone balustrade. No works should be carried out which obscure or reduce the visual relationship of the building to its setting, the vista to the north west, or the view of the building from Fairfax Road and from Double Bay. The curtilage is recommended to be the site of the building together with the common driveway shared with 10 Fairfax Road


Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Local Environmental PlanWoollahraLEP 199505 May 06 55 
Local Environmental PlanWoollahra LEP 20142523 May 15   
Heritage studyTanner 01 Jan 98   

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
 2003 Colin Brady Architecture + Planning  Yes

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
WrittenJohn Ritchie (editor) Australian Dictionary of Biography Vol 12, 1891 - 1939
WrittenLibby Maher2004Amendments to inventory sheet
WrittenRosemary Broomham2002Bellevue Hill Thematic History
WrittenSands Directories1885The Sand's Sydney Directories

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: 2711090

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