Hambledon Cottage, Grounds and Archaeology | NSW Environment & Heritage

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Heritage

Hambledon Cottage, Grounds and Archaeology

Item details

Name of item: Hambledon Cottage, Grounds and Archaeology
Other name/s: Firholme, Valley Cottage, Macarthur Cottage
Type of item: Complex / Group
Group/Collection: Parks, Gardens and Trees
Category: Garden House
Location: Lat: -33.8188543367 Long: 151.0149846280
Primary address: 47 Hassall Street, Harris Park, NSW 2150
Parish: St John
County: Cumberland
Local govt. area: Parramatta
Local Aboriginal Land Council: Deerubbin
Property description
Lot/Volume CodeLot/Volume NumberSection NumberPlan/Folio CodePlan/Folio Number
LOT2 DP391496
LOT3 DP391496
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
47 Hassall StreetHarris ParkParramattaSt JohnCumberlandPrimary Address

Owner/s

Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
City of Parramatta CouncilLocal Government 

Statement of significance:

Hambledon Cottage, its grounds and associated archaeology have State significance for their important and direct associations with the Macarthurs, one of the most influential families in Australian history as well as other figures of state and local renown.

The house is a fine and rare example of an 1820s domestic building and is expressive of the taste, aspirations and needs of its several owners. Its landscape includes plantings dating from its earliest construction and are now some of Australia's oldest surviving European tree plantings. The Hambledon Cottage site is an important component of an estate (Elizabeth Farm) that became a prototype of Australian land management. It also has strong associations with a number of individuals and families important in the development of Parramatta, New South Wales and Australia, including Thomas Hobbes Scott and Henry Kitchen. The archaeology at Hambledon Cottage and grounds has a high archaeological research potential and is likely to be highly intact and of state significance.

Hambledon Cottage also has significance for its role in illustrating the development of the status of Parramatta, and holds great value for contemporary society for these reasons. The archaeological resource will be able to contribute to more accurately documenting the development, use and life style associated with the cottage, Parramatta and early colonial society.
Date significance updated: 13 Apr 12
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: Henry Kitchen (part)
Construction years: 1821-1825
Physical description: Setting (see 'The Parkland Reserve' below also):
Hambledon Cottage is set back from Hassall Street on its northern side and Gregory Place on its eastern side. It is surrounded by a reserve containing a number of large mature trees. Picket fencing has been placed around the house itself and around the reserve with chains swung between the fence posts on the street frontings. A two rail and post rural style fence is located on the western boundary while a chain wire fence is located on the southern boundary

Cottage:
The main cottage is formed by a hipped roof over a rectangular plan, Georgian style bungalow. The walls are of stuccoed brick, rendered and painted with imitation stonework courses etched into the render. The roof is galvanised iron sheeting which has replaced earlier shingles and iron roofing. Two original chimneys remain serving five of the rooms in the cottage. Cedar casement windows are set on sandstone sills with external shutters. French doors open onto a front verandah with diagonal stone flagging, unusual vaulted ceiling and slender timber Doric columns on sandstone plinths. The french doors have internal cedar screen shutters which fit into the reveals as panelling when not in use. The north east corner of the verandah has been modified by infilling in the 1820s to create a room.

Kitchen Wing:
The once detached kitchen wing is now connected to the main house by a flat roofed structure. It features a central pediment above a projecting bay in the Georgian style on the northern facade. The kitchen wing roof has an unpainted galvanised iron sheeted hipped and gabled roof with a single chimney. Together the two buildings form an L shape.

The joinery throughout is Australian cedar of fine Georgian detailing. Some of the internal ceilings and walls are still of lath and plaster whilst one bedroom still has its original ironbark floor and part of the flooring in two other rooms (Study and Lucas Gallery) is original. Much of the hardwood flooring elsewhere was replaced with cypress pine during previous renovations. Lath and plaster ceilings and cornices have been replaced in a number of rooms by fibrous plaster. A domed brick oven adjoins the open fireplace in the kitchen. Most of the fireplaces through the building appear to have been replaced or modified.

Repair works to the building, including re-rendering, ventilation and foundation reconstruction, are evident.

The Coachman's Cottage:
The cottage is a single storey, face brick structure with gabled, iron sheeted roof. The sandstock bricks are laid in English bond and the timber highlight hopper and double hung windows are set on stone sills with rubbed brick arch lintels. The building is divided into three seperate rooms. One room is lined with cement render and painted, one has exposed brickwork. The third is painted and bagged brickwork with concrete screed on stone flagging and includes original timber window and door frames and timber lintels. Now a kitchen, this room has been suggested to have been a harness room, although evidence of this harness room does not cleary suggest that this is the correct location.

The Enclosed Garden:
The rectangular garden area is defined on the east by a timber picket fence and cottage, on the north by the cottage and a picket fence and on the west by the toilet block, and coachman's cottage with sections of picket fence and on the south by a fence forming the boundary with the factory. It is dominated by a very large bunya pine at the rear of the cottage with substantial trees along the southern boundaryr. Species include cypress (Cupressus sp.), hackberry/ southern nettle tree (Celtis australis), sweet gum (Liquidambar styraciflua), and bangalow palms (Archontophoenix cunninghamiana). In the centre of the enclosed garden is a rough arbour of timber and pipe supporting Chinese wisteria (W.sinensis). The area under the large trees are planted with Kaffir lilies (Clivia spp.), cast-iron plant (Aspidistra elatior), Philodendron sp., fruit salad plant (Monstera deliciosa) and ferns. A number of shrubs were planted near the toilet block in 2005 including Eureka Lemon Tree (citrus limonum), Photinia (Photinia glabra), Sacred Bamboo (Nandina demestica Gulf Stream) and dwarf oleander (Nerium olender oink). The garden's distinctiveearly tree plantings show the application of European influences to the local scene and the living style of colonial society at the time.

Just inside the garden fence near the kitchen wing is an Osage orange tree (Maclura pomifera). This is a once-common spiny hedge species imported from Mid-West United States of America used in colonial Australia before the widespread introduction of fencing wire, that is now rare, particularly so east of the Great Dividing Range and in the Sydney basin (Stuart Read, pers.comm., 20/6/12).

Paved areas are located at the rear of the L-shaped building and under the arbour, while stepping stones connect the rear of the cottage with the eastern side of the coachman's cottage. At the rear of the cottage is a square brick structure covering a well with a hand operated pump. A number of inlet pits with steel grates are located throughout the garden and the reserve beyond for site drainage..

The Parkland Reserve
Hambledon Reserve is a flat area devoted to passive recreation. It provides the landscape setting for the cottage, Coachman's cottage and garden.

The density of tree cover increases towards the cottage with several mature trees dating from the Macarthur period of ownership. These include several majestic English oaks (Quercus robur), a cork oak (Q.suber) a hoop pine (Araucaria cunninghamii), Brazilian pepper tree (Schinus auriera) and a large camphor laurel (Cinnamomum camphora). Other species, some of a more recent date, include a firewheel tree (Stenocarpus sinuatus), Norfolk Island hibiscus/ white oak (Lagunaria patersonia), jacaranda (J.mimosifolia), a plum pine/brown/Illawarra plum (Podocarpus elatus), Photinia x serrulata and several eucalypts.

Outside the immediate reserve to the west is another area of open space extending to Harris Street. This features a large Port Jackson fig (Ficus rubiginosa) and a row of recently planted Port Jackson figs (F.rubiginosa) along the Hassall Street boundary.

Along part of the eastern boundary of the reserve facing Gregory Place is a small car parking area. There is also a small carpark in the southeastern corner of the reserve. A semi -circular carriage way connects to Hassell Street and crushed granite pathways lead through the reserve. Under the trees are a number of modern bench seats and picnic tables set on concrete plinths.

Part of the Hassall Street fence has a reinstated set of gate posts (in sandstone) and wrought iron gates, the former engraved with 'Firholme' from the 1880s-1890s use and ownership period. This entry faces Purchase Street, on the site of the original driveway and 'front' entrance to the estate then (Stuart Read, pers.comm., 20/6/12).
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
The house is in good condition. There is likely to be an extensive archaeological resource focused mainly on the house and its immediate surrounds. There is also potential for significant evidence to be found within the greater area of the reserve. (Wendy Thorpe in Musecape, 2000). The archaeology at Hambledon Cottage and grounds has a high archaeological research potential and is likely to be highly intact and of state significance.

Hambledon Cottage is located over a sand body that may have archaeological potential and significance for Aboriginal people. The precise origin of the sand body is not known, but it is thought that the fluvial sand was deposited by the Parramatta River during periods of flooding.
Date condition updated:13 Apr 12
Modifications and dates: 1959/60 - renovations 'almost amounting to reconstruction' were commenced by Parramatta Council (Kass et al, 1996, p 395). Repair works to the building (including re-rendering, ventilation and foundation reconstruction) are evident.

1961 - Grarage extension on south side of Coahman's cottage (Howard & Britton, 2011)

1964 - Extensive interior restoration and refurbishment

1981 - Vaulted ceiling of eastern verandah reconstructed following collapse. Ceiling battens installed and hip batten strengthened with steel plate. Fibrous plaster replaced deteriorating lath and plaster (Howard & Britton, 2011)

1994 - Installation of subsurface drainage system, removal of cement render from external walls and application of sacrificial render to combat rising and falling damp. Replacement of roofing and roof lining on cottage and coachman's cottage. (Howard & Britton, 2011)

1996 - Further repair and maintenance to roof, eaves, gutters and downpipes

2001-02 - Removal of sacrificial render and damp proofing of external walls, replacement of floor joists in members room and bedroom, repairs to chimneys and replacement of columns on eastern verandah.

2004-05 - Garden reconstruction based on documentary and test-trench archaeological evidence, to reinstate 19th century driveway, bed formation and removal of several trees not of heritage value.

2005 - picket fence with chains swung between fence posts as show in a pre 1854 sketch by HC Allport installed around the reserve facing Hassall Street and Gregory place

2006-07 - Replacement of floor joists and repairs to flooring and internal walls in Exhibition Room

2009 - Demolition of toilet block on western wall of coachman's cottage

2012 - Repairs to front fence and ('Firholme') sandstone and wrought iron gate to Hassall Street damaged by traffic accident.

c.2012-14 - Three English oaks (one replacing a removed oak) and four jacarandas (J.mimosifolia) have been planted on site in this time. The jacarandas are understood to have been planted by a well-meaning neighbour but, as such trees were not on this site until the early 20th century, they are inappropriate and should be removed as the principal period of interpretation is meant to be the 19th century under Macarthur family ownership. One of these jacarandas has been planted far too close to a Norfolk Island hibiscus. Given that the archival record shows that more oaks (possibly up to a dozen) were actually planted across the site, additional oak plantings should be implemented. Protecting new plantings from possum attack is particularly important as existing trees have suffered much such damage (CMP, 2011, 6.4.1).
Further information: The site is located within Parramatta Archaeological Management Unit 3038
Current use: house museum, local history group/collection
Former use: residence (private)

History

Historical notes: Occupation of Parramatta by the Aboriginal People
Aboriginal people have occupied the Parramatta region for tens of thousands of years. Evidence of their occupation can be found in the form of rock shelters with deposits, open campsites, middens, axe grinding groove sites, scarred trees, hand stencils and drawings. In pre-colonial times, Parramatta would have been very attractive to Aboriginal people as the landscape would have supported a wide variety of plant and animal life. The City of Parramatta is located on Parramatta River at what is effectively the head of Sydney Harbour. Permanent fresh water was available in the river upstream of the tidal limit and fresh water would also have been available from creeks and surface waterholes, in more clayey parts of the sand terrace. Aboriginal people living in this location would have had access to freshwater and saltwater food resources such as: ducks, eels, shellfish, crayfish, fish and turtles. Terrestrial resources in the Parramatta area included woodland and grassland mammals such as: kangaroos, possums and flying foxes. The grassy woodlands would also have provided access to smaller animals and insects and to native fruits, berries, seeds, yams and roots.

Parramatta CBD, at the time of European settlement, is thought to have been the territorial lands of the Boromedegal (also spelt Burramattagal, Burramattugal, Boora me di-gal, Booramedegal and Burramedigal). The Boromedegal appear to have belonged to a larger cultural group that extended across western Sydney, although exact language group affiliations of pre-contact groups in the Parramatta region is open to some debate. Much of our knowledge about the traditional life style of Aboriginal people living in the Parramatta CBD area is reliant on archaeological investigation. Historical accounts of the Boromedegal People (as a distinct population group) do not tend to accurately or mindfully record the impacts experienced by Aboriginal people in the area very soon after European settlement.

European settlers, attracted to Parramatta for its fertile soils and its suitability for water transport, began arriving in the region in the late 18th century. Parramatta quickly became the focus of residential, commercial and industrial development. The establishment of the town of Parramatta and cultivation of the surrounding land, would have resulted in many Aboriginal sites being disturbed or destroyed without being recorded.

Hambledon Cottage Site
Hambledon Cottage was built between 1821 and 1824 on the north western corner of the100 acre grant made to John Macarthur, soldier, entrepreneur and pastoralist in 1793. This grant formed the basis of the 850 acre Elizabeth Farm Estate, which included Elizabeth Farm. It was originally believed that the cottage was constructed for his children's governess, Penelope Lucas, who served as the family governess when John Macarthur returned from London in 1805. However, it has been more recently accepted that it was constructed to supplement the accomodation at Elizabeth farm more generally.

The original cottage, now the main wing was designed by Henry Kitchen, although the building was a simplified version of his original design. Kitchen was employed on several of Macarthur's building projects and has been described as the main architectural rival to Francis Greenway. The gabled kitchen was added some time later (Musecape, 2000: 7).

Archdeacon Thomas Hobbes Scott, appointed archdeacon of NSW in 1824, became a friend of the Macarthur's and took up temporary residence in the cottage in 1825. He was responsible for the 1826 addition of a coach house and stable.. There is suggestion that Henry Kitchen was responsible for their design despite having died in 1822. Elizabeth Macarthur noted that Scott was also responsible for having got the garden in good order (Musecape, 2000: 11). The existing coachman's cottage is considered to be an 1880s-1890s extension of the 1826 building, whilst the stables are no longer in existence. (Howard & Britton, 2011)

Penelope Lucas took up residence in the cottage from 1827. Two potential reasons have been given for this, the shortage of sleeping arrangements at Elizabeth farm and to John Macarthur's illness which saw him dislike having women resident at Elizabeth Farm. Lucas remained there until her death in 1836 as Macarthur had left her a small annuity in his will when he died in 1834, as well as lifetime residency of the cottage. It appears that there was no formal kitchen at the cottage when Lucas took up residence and she returned every afternoon to Elizabeth Farm for dinner. The kitchen wing on the western side of the cottage is believed to have been built sometime between 1832 and 1836. Macarthur's daughter Emmeline went to live with Penelope Lucas. Emmeline's move to the cottage was certainly due to Macarthur's illness durung he gradually banished all women from Elizabeth Farm. This was also a period in which Lucas undertook development of the garden (Musecape, 2000: 12).

Following John Macarthur's death ownership of the Elizabeth Farm Estate, including the cottage, transferred to Edward Macarthur. Following the death of Penelope Lucas the cottage was occupied by a number of Macarthur employees until 1839 when James Macarthur and his wife returned from England. They took up residence in the cottage until they moved to Camden. However, they continued to make use of the cottage when James came to Sydney to undertake his duties as a member of the Legislative Assembly. In the meantime, Dr Matthew Anderson took up residency at the cottage between 1839 and 1847. The 1844 Plan of the Town of Parramatta shows that a number of outbuildings had been constructed at Hambledon Cottage.

Anderson was Assistant Colonial Surgeon between 1819 and 1824, resident surgeon at Parramatta Hospital and surgeon to the Female Factory and Orphan School. He also retained a private practice and was the Macarthur family physician. He made no changes during his period of residence. (Musecape, 2000: 13)

Edward Macarthur arrived in NSW in 1851 to take up a position as Deputy Adjutant General of the Army and used Hambledon Cottage as his temporary residence. Many of his relatives, friends and army colleagues also stayed at the cottage. Under Edward a new entry was constructed on the northern facade, the house was re-roofed and a substantial plantation of trees was established.. By 1854 the cottage garden was enclosed with a low timber picket fence and double gates had been erected on the eastern side where there were also now dense shrubs) (Musecape, 2000: 13).

Between 1864 and 1881 Hambledon Cottage was leased to two families, including the Bohle family and later, the Gill family. Little is know of the changes to the property during this period.

In 1872 Edward Macarthur died leaving a life interest in the Elizabeth Macarthur estate, including Hambledon Cottage, to his wife Sarah. It was his intention that the estate would eventually pass to his niece Elizabeth Onslow. However, financial necessity saw Sarah Macarthur reluctantly agree to subdivision and sale of the estate in 1881.

The north western portion of the estate was put up for sale in 1883 with Hambledon Cottage given the name Macarthur Cottage. The cottage site included a brick, four bedroom residence with attached kitchen, scullery, back pantry, servants bedroom and a bathroom. The kitchen yard included a range of large, detached brick buildings comprising a three roomed cottage, wash house, harness room, coach house, and four stall stable with hayloft above. The property was located on just over 2 acres of ground (Musecape, 2000: 16-17).

The cottage was purchased by Francis John Wickham for 1100 pounds and renamed Firholme. He lived there until his death in 1892, adding a new entrance with stone pillars and wrought iron gates with this name on them on Hassall Street. Wickham's wife and children remained at the property after his death until c1895-96. (Musecape, 2000: 17) The 1895 Detail Plan of the area (Sheet 5) shows the building isolated on the large block, with a rectangular structure adjacent to the southeast boundary of 45 Hassall Street. The only other feature indicated near Hambledon Cottage is a small square, possibly representing a water tank or privy.

A series of tenants rented the cottage from the Wickham family until it was sold to Ella McCulloch in 1906. The property changed hands several times during the next 34 years and a number of changes were made to outbuildings.

In 1940 the cottage, together with adjoinign lands, was purchased by The Goodyear Tyre & Rubber Co. (Australia) Ltd. There was concern that a factory would be constructed on the site, but this never eventuated due to community action. Occupants during the Goodyear's ownership included one of the company's executives, John Henry Hall and his wife Sylvia Merle Hall (Hughes, 1996: 57).

In1945 Kolynos Limited purchased the property. Their affiliate Whitehall Pharmacal Company sought to undertake development around the site in 1949. The local community again campaigned strongly against the proposal. The company agreed in 1953 to donate the historic portion of the site to Parramatta Council. An agreement was also made to allow Council to purchase three acres west of Hambledon Cottage to be used for associated purposes. In appreciation Cliff Street was formally renamed Gregory Place after the Australasian Manager of the Company, E.S.Gregory. (Parramatta & District Historical Society, 1992: 13).

According to former Mayor Paul Garrard, one of the Parramatta & District Historical Society's great achievements was in restoring Hambledon Cottage. The Society was the second oldest such in Australia and commemorated its centennary with a dinner last week (Parramatta Advertiser, 11/12/2013)

In 1959 extensive renovations were commenced by Parramatta Council under the guidance of the firm Buckland and Druce, honorary architects for the project. It was during this time that the cottage was renamed Hambledon Cottage. It was occupied by a caretaker who opened the house to the public as a folk museum until 1963 when the City of Parramatta Art Society was given a lease until 1964. Ooccupancy was given to the Parramatta and District Historical Society in 1964.. (Musecape, 2000: 19) Works were primarily exterior structural repairs and included roof works, removal of a concrete layer from the flagstones on the eatsern verandah, painting, general renovation, repair to floors and replacement of some of the wooden verandah columns. The vaulted ceiling of the verandah was extensively repaired due to termite infestation. Further infestation was found following commencement of the works. A garage extension was completed in 1961. (Parramatta & District Historical Society, 1992: 13; Howard & Britton, 2011:21)

In 1965 the Parramatta & District Historical Society were given occupation of the building in return for restoring and refurbishing the interior of the building in a style of the 1830-1850 Colonial period. (Parramatta & District Historical Society, 1992: 13) Hambledon Cottage was opened 20 26 February 1966 as a house museum.

The grounds of Hambledon have been converted into a public reserve. They still contain some of the original or early layout (drive alignments, paths) and plantings put in by John Macarthur when it was part of the Elizabeth Farm Estate. These include several mature (some now in decline) English oak trees (Quercus robur) in the garden believed to have been planted by John Macarthur. Other mature trees gracing the grounds from early decades in Hambledon's existence include a cork oak (Q.suber), jacaranda (J.mimosifolia), Illawarra plum/ plum or brown pine (Podocarpus elatus),, firewheel tree (Stenocarpus sinuatus) and Osage orange (Maclura pomifera), a tree now rare east of the Great Dividing Range. Some of these plantings can be dated from shipping lists Macarthur brought with him of plants on board the "Lord Eldon" in 1817 (Stuart Read, pers.comm., 28/3/2012; Howard & BRitton, 2011).

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
2. Peopling-Peopling the continent Aboriginal cultures and interactions with other cultures-Activities associated with maintaining, developing, experiencing and remembering Aboriginal cultural identities and practices, past and present. (none)-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Agriculture-Activities relating to the cultivation and rearing of plant and animal species, usually for commercial purposes, can include aquaculture Clearing land for farming-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Environment - cultural landscape-Activities associated with the interactions between humans, human societies and the shaping of their physical surroundings Landscapes and gardens of domestic accommodation-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Environment - cultural landscape-Activities associated with the interactions between humans, human societies and the shaping of their physical surroundings Landscapes demonstrating styles in landscape design-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Environment - cultural landscape-Activities associated with the interactions between humans, human societies and the shaping of their physical surroundings Gardens and landscapes reminiscent of an 'old country'-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Pastoralism-Activities associated with the breeding, raising, processing and distribution of livestock for human use Working for pastoralists-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Pastoralism-Activities associated with the breeding, raising, processing and distribution of livestock for human use Woolgrowing-
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 townsfolk - terraces and cottages-
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. Country Villa-
4. Settlement-Building settlements, towns and cities Land tenure-Activities and processes for identifying forms of ownership and occupancy of land and water, both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Changing land uses - from rural to suburban-
4. Settlement-Building settlements, towns and cities Land tenure-Activities and processes for identifying forms of ownership and occupancy of land and water, both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Changing land uses - from rural to suburban-
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 Rural orchards-
6. Educating-Educating Education-Activities associated with teaching and learning by children and adults, formally and informally. Private (independent) schooling-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Creative endeavour-Activities associated with the production and performance of literary, artistic, architectural and other imaginative, interpretive or inventive works; and/or associated with the production and expression of cultural phenomena; and/or environments that have inspired such creative activities. Designing in an exemplary architectural style-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Creative endeavour-Activities associated with the production and performance of literary, artistic, architectural and other imaginative, interpretive or inventive works; and/or associated with the production and expression of cultural phenomena; and/or environments that have inspired such creative activities. Building in response to climate - verandahs-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Creative endeavour-Activities associated with the production and performance of literary, artistic, architectural and other imaginative, interpretive or inventive works; and/or associated with the production and expression of cultural phenomena; and/or environments that have inspired such creative activities. Architectural styles and periods - colonial homestead-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Creative endeavour-Activities associated with the production and performance of literary, artistic, architectural and other imaginative, interpretive or inventive works; and/or associated with the production and expression of cultural phenomena; and/or environments that have inspired such creative activities. Adaptation of overseas design for local use-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Domestic life-Activities associated with creating, maintaining, living in and working around houses and institutions. Living in a rural homestead-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Leisure-Activities associated with recreation and relaxation Enjoying public parks and gardens-
9. Phases of Life-Marking the phases of life Persons-Activities of, and associations with, identifiable individuals, families and communal groups Associations with John and Elizabeth Macarthur, pastoralists-
9. Phases of Life-Marking the phases of life Persons-Activities of, and associations with, identifiable individuals, families and communal groups Associations with Penelope Lucas, governess, companion to the Macarthur family-
9. Phases of Life-Marking the phases of life Persons-Activities of, and associations with, identifiable individuals, families and communal groups Associations with James Macarthur, settler, farmer-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
Hambledon Cottage has State historical significance for its close association with the Macarthurs, one of the most prominent and influential families in Australian History. It has particular associations with aspects of the family history, especially the relationship with Penelope Lucas and the impact of John Macarthur's declining health on the family . The cottage contributes to documentation of the use and management of the greater Elizabeth Farm Estate, a prototype for Australian land management. It is one of the earliest surviving houses in Parramatta and NSW. The garden contains elements from several periods of occupation including some from the earliest period of development and contribute to appreciation of the site as a domestic place.

Hambledon Cottage is an important part of a group of colonial era dwellings in Parramatta that include Elizabeth Farm and Experiment Farm. Its later history is representative of the growth of Parramatta through the subdivision of large estates in the later nineteenth century.
SHR Criteria b)
[Associative significance]
Hambledon Cottage has State significance for its associations with John Macarthur, his Elizabeth Farm Estate, his wife Elizabeth, their son Edward and early Australian architect and rival to Francis Greenway, Henry Kitchen. It also has associations with significant such figures such as Archdeacon Thomas Hobbes Scott, Penelope Lucas, Dr Matthew Anderson and local settlers such as Francis John Wickham.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
Hambledon Cottage has State aesthetic significance as a fine and rare colonial era cottage, the plan configuration of which is very intact and which has retained a relatively large amount of fine early fabric. It has significance as a part of the Macarthur's Elizabeth Farm Estate and because of its setting, which contains trees planted by the Macarthur family, views and vistas to Elizabeth Farm's surviving early tree plantings, nearby Experiment Farm cottage's estate, and the Queen's Wharf precinct on Parramatta River.

The Hambledon Cottage landscape has state significance as an important and appropriate setting for what was an important private residence. It includes some of the oldest exotic tree plantings in Australia whose layout demonstrates the application of European influences to the local scene and the living style of colonial society at the time. They have great aesthetic significance due to their likely design by the important early Australian architect Henry Kitchen.

The design of the wooded landscape associated with Hambledon Cottage achieves a unity of scale and balance of form that complement the architecture of the house. Landscape works carried out around Hambledon in the later 20th century are less significant but nonetheless demonstrate more recent approaches to amenity planting associated with local government conservation action.
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
The acquisition of the cottage by council and its subsequent history has State social significance as an illustration of the growing appreciation of the role of historic sites in the community that commenced in the mid twentieth century and is today reflected in the number of tourists which visit the site. It has local social significance for its strong associations with the contemporary community of Parramatta where it is a local landmark.
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
The landscape of Hambledon has State significance for its potential to yield information that will contribute to an understanding of NSW's cultural history. The garden and grounds have a considerable archaeological, educational and interpretive potential as a resource for the study of subjects such as architecture, design, social history, landscape architecture and horticulture for present and future generations of Australians and has high archaeological research potential. The cottage is an important educational resource because of the place it occupies in the development of Australian colonial architecture, its early fabric demonstrating construction and joinery techniques from the beginning of the nineteenth century.

The archaeology at Hambledon Cottage and grounds has high archaeological research potential and is likely to be highly intact and of State significance. The physical archaeological evidence within this area may include built landforms, structural features, intact subfloors deposits, open deposits and scatters, ecological samples and individual artefacts which have potential to yield information relating to major historic themes including Agriculture, Housing, Land Tenure, Persons, Pastoralism and Cultural Sites.

The Hambledon Cottage site contains a section of a sand body, thought to be deposited by the Parramatta River during periods of flood. From a geomorphic perspective, the sandbody has the potential to provide insight into patterns of river flow and flood events that could lead to a better understanding of the formation of the Parramatta River Valley. Excavation of sections of sand body on George Street, Parramatta have uncovered archaeological artefacts and deposits associated with Aboriginal people occuppying the Parramatta area prior to the arrival of non-Aboriginal settlers. The section of sand body location on the site of Hambledon Cottage and Garden may have the potential to provide insight into the diet and lifestyle of Aboriginal People living in Parramatta and more broadly the Cumberland Plain.
SHR Criteria f)
[Rarity]
Hambledon Cottage has State significance as a rare example of an early nineteenth century cottage that is representative of a particular class of society, their tastes and means and is a particularly fine example of its type. By virtue of its early date of construction, historical associations and surviving landscape elements, the landscape of Hambledon also has rarity value. Many of the plants in the garden have high landscape architectural value and ornamental qualities. Some of the trees are among the oldest exotic plantings in NSW and Australia. The Osage orange tree (Maclura pomifera) is a very rare surviving specimen in Sydney, of a species once common on rural estate hedgerows.
SHR Criteria g)
[Representativeness]
Hambledon Cottage has representative value at a State level for its ability to demonstrate a class of early nineteenth century domestic building. The garden at Hambledon also has State significance at a representative level for its ability to demonstrate colonial cultural landscapes developed by the wealthy early European settlers, particularly in the use of European horticultural practices and the planting of exotic tree species such as English oak (Quercus robur), cork oak (Q.suber) and indigenous species such as hoop pine (Araucaria cunninghamiana), Bunya pine (A.bidwillii) and Port Jackson figs (Ficus rubiginosa). The mixed planting of deciduous and evergreen trees and shrubs, together with the vistas and views have produced a landscape with considerable character, which is now in stark contrast with the garden's more developed urban surroundings.
Integrity/Intactness: Hambledon Cottage has a good level of intactness, although some of the interior surfaces were replaced with more modern fabric during the 1960s.It is a rare and intact example of an early cottage. The garden retains much of the layouts and species associated with the early colonial period of use. It also has a strong association with the Macarthur family.
The physical archaeological evidence within this area may include built landforms, structural features, intact subfloor deposits, open deposits and scatters, ecological samples and individual artefacts which have potential to yield information relating to major historic themes including Agriculture, Housing, Land Tenure, Persons, Pastoralism and Cultural Sites. Archaeological evidence at this site is likely to be intact. This Archaeological Management Unit (AMU 2884) is of State significance (Godden Mackay Logan/PHALMS, 2001)
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:

Hambledon Cottage's grounds, the driveway and carriageway deposits and the sandstone formations of the Coach House are protected as 'relics' under the Heritage Act, and any further work in the grounds will need to follow the provisions of that Act to ensure they are protected and their integrity not disturbed. (HLA Envirosciences, 2002), Statutory: DCP. Statutory: NSW Heritage Act (Section 140). Site Requirement: Test Trench and Reassess. Site Requirement: Open Area Excavation. Interpretation: Signage Permanent. Site Requirement: In Situ Conservation (PHALMS 2000, AMU 2886).

Procedures /Exemptions

Section of actDescriptionTitleCommentsAction date
57(2)Exemption to allow workStandard Exemptions SCHEDULE OF STANDARD EXEMPTIONS
HERITAGE ACT 1977
Notice of Order Under Section 57 (2) of the Heritage Act 1977

I, the Minister for Planning, pursuant to subsection 57(2) of the Heritage Act 1977, on the recommendation of the Heritage Council of New South Wales, do by this Order:

1. revoke the Schedule of Exemptions to subsection 57(1) of the Heritage Act made under subsection 57(2) and published in the Government Gazette on 22 February 2008; and

2. grant standard exemptions from subsection 57(1) of the Heritage Act 1977, described in the Schedule attached.

FRANK SARTOR
Minister for Planning
Sydney, 11 July 2008

To view the schedule click on the Standard Exemptions for Works Requiring Heritage Council Approval link below.
Sep 5 2008
57(2)Exemption to allow workHeritage Act - Site Specific Exemptions HERITAGE ACT 1977

ORDER UNDER SECTION 57(2)
TO GRANT SITE SPECIFIC EXEMPTIONS FROM APPROVAL

Hambledon Cottage, Grounds and Archaeology

SHR No. 1888

I, the Minister for Heritage, on the recommendation of the Heritage Council of New South Wales, in pursuance of section 57(2) of the NSW Heritage Act 1977, do, by this my order, grant an exemption from section 57(1) of that Act in respect of the engaging in or carrying out of any activities described in Schedule C by the owner, mortgagee or lessee of the land described in Schedule B on the item described in Schedule A.

The Hon Robyn Parker, MP.
Minister for Heritage

Sydney, 22nd Day of July 2012

SCHEDULE A

The item known as Hambledon Cottage, Grounds and Archaeology, situated on the land described in Schedule B.


SCHEDULE B

All those pieces or parcels of land known as Lots 2 and 3 DP 391496 in Parish of St John, County of Cumberland shown edged heavy black on the plan catalogued HC 2547 in the office of the Heritage Council of New South Wales.

SCHEDULE C

1. All Standard Exemptions

2. General maintenance and repair.
(i) Suppression of fire;
(ii) Tree surgery where considered necessary for the health of a tree (but not including removal);
(iii) Pruning of trees considered a danger to the public or staff;
(iv) Removal of trees considered a danger to the public or staff provided a concurrent proposal for a replacement species is submitted and/or is consistent with a Plan of Management, Conservation Management Plan or Masterplan endorsed by the Heritage Council of NSW;
(v) Planting of new trees where the proposal is consistent with a Plan of Management, Conservation Management Plan or Masterplan endorsed by the Heritage Council of NSW;
(vi) Temporary barricading around trees considered a danger to the public or staff;
(vii) Repair of damage caused by compaction or erosion and implementation of erosion or compaction control measures ;
(viii) Minor maintenance and minor repair of any building, structure, furniture, fixture, monument, retaining wall or work within the park where the works will not effect the potential archaeological resource or the heritage significance of the element or area in which they are to be undertaken;
(ix) Maintenance and repair of existing roads, paths, retaining walls, fences and gates, and planter bed edging or kerbing;
(x) Routine horticultural maintenance, including lawn mowing, cultivation and pruning.

3. Maintenance of services and utilities.
(i) Maintenance and repair of existing services and public utilities including communications, gas, electricity, water supply, waste disposal, sewerage, irrigation and drainage;
(ii) Upgrade of existing services and public utilities where activity will not materially affect the heritage significance of the Park as a whole or the area in which they are to be undertaken;
(iii) Extension of irrigation system as necessary to areas currently without this infrastructure where it is demonstrated there is no potential for or adverse impact on potential archaeological resources.

4. Alteration of roads, pathways, retaining walls and fences.
(i) Minor alteration to roadways, pathways, retaining walls and fences where the proposal is consistent an endorsed Plan of Management, Conservation Management Plan or Masterplan and will not materially affect the potential archaeological resource, the heritage significance of the Park as a whole or the building or area in which they are to be undertaken, including demonstration that there is no potential for or adverse impact on potential archaeological resources.

5. Management of lawns, garden beds, hard landscaping and living collections.
(i) Routine horticultural curation, including development and management of displays of annuals and perennials. This does not include changes in layout.

6. Management of interpretive, information and directional signage.
(i) Installation, removal and alteration of information and directional signage and labels where the proposal is consistent with an endorsed Plan of Management, Conservation Management Plan or Masterplan, and where the visual impact of signage is considered minimal and will not impact on any potential archaeological resources;(ii) Maintenance and repair of existing interpretive signage.

7. Management of artworks, statues and monuments, and fountains.
(i) Minor maintenance and minor repair of any artwork, monument, fountain or work within the reserve where the works will not materially affect the heritage significance of the area in which they are to be undertaken.

8. Furniture and fixtures.
Installation, relocation, removal and maintenance of park furniture and fixtures where the proposal is consistent with a Plan of Management, Conservation Management Plan or Masterplan endorsed by the Heritage Council and will not materially affect the heritage significance of the Park as a whole or the building or area in which they are to be undertaken, including demonstration that there is no potential for or adverse impact on potential archaeological resources.
Sep 21 2012

PDF Standard exemptions for works requiring Heritage Council approval

Listings

Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Heritage Act - State Heritage Register 0188821 Sep 12 944026
Regional Environmental PlanHambledon Cottage & Fig Tree27920 Aug 99 95 
Local Environmental PlanHambledon Cottage & Fig Tree279, 28021 Feb 97 20 
Archaeological zoning planPHALMS AMU 2884Unit 2884   
National Trust of Australia register NTA (NSW) Suburban Register958629 May 96   
Register of the National Estate 307921 Oct 80   

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
Colonial Landscapes of the Cumberland Plain and Camden, NSW2000 Morris, C., & Britton, G./NSW National Trust (for the Heritage Council of NSW)  Yes

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
TourismAttraction Homepage2012Hambledon Cottage View detail
WrittenBartok, Di2012'Hunt for Gate Crashers: $4000 bill to fix historic stonework', in The Parramatta Advertiser, 20/6/12
WrittenBrian McDonald & Associates2003Heritage Report on Elizabeth Farm Curtilage: Harris Park Precinct, Parramatta
WrittenChris Betteridge of Musecape & Wendy Thorp of Cultural Resources Management2000The Landscape of Hambledon Cottage, Parramatta, Conservation Management Plan
WrittenCox, Tanner P/L1981A Restoration Report on Hambledon Cottage, Hassall Street, Parramatta
WrittenGodden Mackay Logan2000Parramatta Historical Archaeological Landscape Management System (PHALMS)
WrittenHeritage Branch - Office of Environment Heritage2011Ancient Aboriginal and Early Colonial Landscape SHR Listing 1863
WrittenHLA Envirosciences P/L2002Test Excavation - Hambledon Cottage, Parramatta
WrittenJoy Hughes1996Hambledon Cottage, Parramatta - Historical Documentation
WrittenParramatta Advertiser (unattributed)2013'Bashir praises work of society at its centennary', in The Parramatta Advertiser, 11/12/2013
WrittenParramatta and District Historical Society1992Hambledon Cottage: The Cottage on the Plain
WrittenRod Howard & Associates in association with Geoffrey Britton2011Hambledon Cottage Conservation Management Plan
WrittenRod Howard & Associates P/L; in association with Geoffrey Britton2011Hambledon Cottage, Hassall Street, Parramatta - Conservation Management Plan
WrittenRod Howard & Associates; in association with Geoffrey Britton2001Hambledon Cottage, Hassall Street Parramatta, draft Conservation Management Plan
WrittenSuters Architects Snell1996Harris park cultural landscape masterplan
WrittenTerry Kass, Carol Liston and John McClymont1996Parramatta: A Past Revealed

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: Heritage Office
Database number: 5052762
File number: 14/5121; S90/5820; 12/6844


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