The Grange - residential flat building, grounds and brick retaining wall | NSW Environment, Energy and Science

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The Grange - residential flat building, grounds and brick retaining wall

Item details

Name of item: The Grange - residential flat building, grounds and brick retaining wall
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Residential buildings (private)
Category: Block of Flats
Primary address: 25-27 Mona Road, Darling Point, NSW 2027
Local govt. area: Woollahra
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
25-27 Mona RoadDarling PointWoollahra  Primary Address

Statement of significance:

The subdivision and the building demonstrate a major historical phase in the development of Darling Point as a residential suburb in the early part of the 20th century. This phase saw the breaking up of the early large land grants and estates, in this case the Mona Estate, and the closer subdivision and development of the peninsular for good quality upper middle class housing. The building demonstrates this phase and the post WWI trend to higher residential densities with purpose designed and built residential flat buildings.

The building is a fine representative example of the Federation Arts and Crafts style applied to an apartment building, and provides evidence of the aesthetic tastes of the period. Its ‘in the round’ architectural design deals well with the prominent but small and difficultly shaped site, and is a good neighbour to the adjacent houses to the west in massing, materials and detailing. The building demonstrates many of the key characteristics of the style in its strong compositional massing, clear expression of its primary construction materials, painted roughcast stucco with narrow vertical panels of smooth render, face brickwork header courses around openings, large bay extending the full height of the building, bands of six-pane casement windows separated by bands of wide rusticated weatherboards and barrel vaulted entrance portico with the building’s name in bas relief Art Deco lettering.

The building’s siting, scale and design give it a local landmark quality. In addition, it is part of a group on the southern side of Mona Road, comprising Nos 9 to 25/27, which form a cohesive and distinctive streetscape. The rendered brick retaining wall on the street alignment, the relationship of the buildings with the street and the mature street trees are all characteristic of this streetscape.
Date significance updated: 22 Jul 05
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

Designer/Maker: Percy Roberts, Architect
Builder/Maker: Madel Building Co.
Construction years: 1920-1921
Physical description: Three storey Federation Arts and Crafts apartment building. The design relies for its visual impact on strong compositional massing, with heavy articulation of its main facades, an interplay of vertical and horizontal elements and clear expression of its primary construction materials rather than decoration. The external walls are of painted roughcast stucco on brickwork with restrained decoration in the form of narrow vertical panels of smooth render enhancing the building’s verticality and face brickwork header courses around openings. A large bay extending the full height of the building on its western elevation contains bands of six-pane casement windows separated by bands of wide rusticated weatherboards bell-mouthed at their lower edges. The original corner verandahs in the re-entrant angle on this elevation have been sympathetically enclosed using similar architectural treatment and form a broad bay extending the height of the building. Similar balconies with matching weatherboard balustrades at the side of the building facing Mona Road have been extended but not enclosed. The roof is hipped and the ends of the rafters are expressed. An entrance portico has a barrel vaulted roof supported on cylindrical and square columns. The name of the building is indicated in Art Deco lettering in bas relief on the ‘gable end’ of the portico.

The building sits in a well established and maintained garden behind a retaining wall on the street alignment built of matching painted roughcast stucco with contrasting horizontal bands and other details of smooth render.

While of a different material, the retaining wall continues the sandstone retaining walls characteristic of this part of Mona Road, as are the large Port Jackson fig street trees.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
Excellent condition, well maintained.
Date condition updated:03 Apr 06
Modifications and dates: Various alterations and additions to the building have been carried out between 1956 and 1992.
Further information: Forms part of a distinctive streetscape which includes the retaining walls on the street alignment and the large Port Jackson fig street trees. While the building is taller than the neighbouring buildings at Nos 21 and 23, its site is not elevated to the same extent, and it shares a similar general design approach and some stylistic features such as the prominent projecting bays. The street front wall is painted in a sandstone colour and visually continues the sandstone retaining wall in front of Nos 15–23. The building provides a good ‘end’ to the group and transition to high rise development to the east and in Darling Point Road.

Full LEP listing: The Grange - residential flat building, grounds and brick retaining wall to street
Current use: Residential
Former use: Residential

History

Historical notes: The site is part of a 15 acre grant by Governor Brisbane to his astronomer, James Dunlop in the mid 1830s. Dunlop did not build on the land. In 1841 he sold it to Thomas Ware Smart who, a year later, built the house known as Mona which still exists at 38 Mona Road. The Mona Estate was subdivided in the 1880s, with Mona Road providing access from Darling Point Road, and lots on its eastern side offered for sale. This subdivision does not appear to have proceeded. The land was resubdivided in 1904 with Mona Road taking a substantially different alignment and connecting with New South Head Road. The subject allotment was created in that subdivision.

Approval to erection of ‘The Grange’ was granted in June 1920, and it is recorded in Sands Directory as being occupied in 1922. There is no record of a building on the allotment prior to this.

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. Street patterns and subdivision-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
The subdivision and the building demonstrate a major historical phase in the development of Darling Point as a residential suburb in the early part of the 20th century. This phase saw the breaking up of the early large land grants and estates, in this case the Mona Estate, and the closer subdivision and development of the peninsular for good quality upper middle class housing. The building demonstrates this phase and the post WWI trend to higher residential densities with purpose designed and built residential flat buildings.
SHR Criteria b)
[Associative significance]
Does not meet the inclusion guidelines for this criterion.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
The building is a fine example of the Federation Arts and Crafts style applied to an apartment building, and provides evidence of the aesthetic tastes of the period. It is a very competent ‘in the round’ architectural design which deals well with the prominent but small and difficultly shaped site, and is a good neighbour to the adjacent houses to the west in massing, materials and detailing. The building demonstrates many of the key characteristics of the style in its strong compositional massing, clear expression of its primary construction materials, painted roughcast stucco with narrow vertical panels of smooth render, face brickwork header courses around openings, large bay extending the full height of the building, bands of six-pane casement windows separated by bands of wide rusticated weatherboards and barrel vaulted entrance portico with the building’s name in bas relief Art Deco lettering.

The building’s siting, scale and design give it a local landmark quality. In addition, it is a significant component of the distinctive streetscape of the locality. The street front retaining wall continuing the sandstone wall of the neighbouring properties, the relationship of the building with the street and the mature street trees are all characteristic of the streetscape of this.
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
Does not meet the inclusion guidelines for this criterion.
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
Does not meet the inclusion guidelines for this criterion.
SHR Criteria f)
[Rarity]
Does not meet the inclusion guidelines for this criterion.
SHR Criteria g)
[Representativeness]
The building is a good representative example of a Federation Arts and Crafts apartment building.
Integrity/Intactness: Although modified, the building retains the integrity of its original design and construction.
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 PlanWoollahraLEP 199522 Jul 05 52 
Local Environmental PlanWoollahra LEP 201416623 May 15   
Within a conservation area on an LEPMona Road HCALEP 199527 Feb 04 46 
Heritage studyTanner 01 Jan 97   

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
Darling Point Heritage Item Study2003 Mark Robinson  Yes

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
WrittenRate books/BA records  
WrittenRosemary Broomham2001Darling Point: Thematic History
WrittenTanner & Associates1997Preliminary heritage item investigation - Darling Point

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: 2711563


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