Sydney Architecture Images- Western Suburbs

Hambledon Cottage

architect

Henry Kitchen

location

63 Hassall Street Parramatta 

date

1822

style

Old Colonial Georgian

construction

rendered sandstock brick

type

House
  Hambledon Cottage
 
 
Hambledon Cottage was built by John Macarthur in 1824 as a second house on his Elizabeth Farm Estate. Notable occupants in the early days included General Sir Edward Macarthur, Archdeacon Thomas Hobbes Scott and Dr. Matthew Anderson. The resident most associated with Hambledon is Penelope Lucas, former governess to Macarthur's daughters. It was she who named the family "Cottage" after the township of Hambledon in Hampshire, England.

Built of rendered sandstock brick in the Colonial Georgian style, the basic design seems to have been by Henry Kitchen who also designed the "Cottage" on the Camden property. The main eastern wing is single storied of low lines forming an "L" with a gabled kitchen wing. The shallow pitched roof was shingled until the 1850's when it was covered by vertically seamed iron sheets. The roof covers the main building and verandah in one; the front verandah has slender timber Doric column supports over diamond shaped sandstone paving. The verandah, with French doors opening onto it, has an unusual vaulted ceiling. The doors have internal cedar screen shutters which fit into the reveals as panelling when not in use.

The joinery throughout is of Australian cedar and is a splendid example 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. The kitchen block to the west, once detached, is now linked to the main wing to sympathetically form an additional room and a side entrance. An excellent example of a domed brick oven adjoins the open fireplace in the kitchen.

Edward Macarthur, eldest son of the family, was the first occupant of the cottage. A professional soldier, he came back to Sydney in 1824 in connection with planning the defence of the colony. He was to return again to Australia and the Cottage in 1853, as a Lieutenant Colonel and Deputy Adjutant General of the British Forces in Australia. His appointment took him to Victoria where he was involved in the Eureka uprising. He succeeded to the position of Adjutant General and for a period was the Lieutenant Governor of Victoria. On the death of his father in 1834, he succeeded to the Elizabeth Farm Estate and shared the Camden Park Estate with his two brothers. During his Australian tour of duty he was able to take a first hand interest in the management of the family properties.

On his return to England, he was knighted and promoted. In 1862, General Sir Edward married and planned to return to Australia on his retirement. He died in 1872, without children and without returning to Parramatta. The Cottage passed to his brothers and it was sold in 1883. A memorial and bust of Sir Edward can be seen at St. John's Cathedral in Parramatta.

The second occupant of the Cottage was Archdeacon Thomas Hobbes Scott. As Secretary to Commissioner Bigge he came to the colony in 1819 and became friends with the Macarthur family. On his return to England, he became a Minister of the Church of England. He was offered the position of Archdeacon of New South Wales and on his return in 1825 was invited by the Macarthurs to live at the Cottage until he found suitable accommodation in Sydney. In his appointment, Scott was almost in complete control of the church in the colony and in precedence ranked next to the Governor. Scott was a tireless worker and did much to promote education in the colony. Whilst at the Cottage he was responsible for the building of the coach house and planting much of the garden.

In December 1826, Elizabeth Macarthur wrote to Edward in England, "when the Archdeacon removes to Woolloomooloo we shall have the cottage vacant. Miss Lucas is determining on removing to it." Born in 1768, Penelope Lucas came to Elizabeth Farm with Macarthur and some of his family on his return from England in 1805. Miss Lucas, who was called "Mrs Lucas" or "Aunt Lucas" out of courtesy by the children, was governess to Elizabeth, Mary and Emmeline Macarthur. After her services were no longer required as governess, she remained at the Farm as companion and friend of Mrs Macarthur. When Macarthur became mentally ill in 1832, he drove his daughters Elizabeth and Mary out of the Farm and they went to live with Mrs Lucas at Hambledon. Penelope lived on at Hambledon until her death in 1836. John Macarthur had left her a small annuity in his will and the use of Hambledon during her lifetime. In the chancel of St. John's Cathedral, Parramatta, a memorial records the feelings of the congregation and records some of her activities within the church and community.

Many friends and retainers of the family occupied the Cottage over the succeeding years including three governors. On the sale of the estate, it was acquired by a solicitor, Septimus Stephen, who divided the property and sold each of the old buildings separately. Hambledon was to see a succession of tenants and owners. One renamed the property "Firholme", a name which may still be seen on the remaining gates facing Hassall Street. Often the Cottage was called "Macarthur's Farm". It was probably the McCullough family, residents at the turn of the century, who joined the old kitchen to the main wing.

Early in 1950, the Whitehall Pharmaceutical Company acquired Hambledon, its many out buildings and its grounds of lawns, ancient oaks, peppers, olives and a Spanish Cork tree. They erected a factory on the Clay Cliff Creek perimeter and donated the Cottage and the northern grounds to Parramatta City Council thus securing the historical property for the future. Council restored the building with skill and in the early 1960's leased it to the Parramatta and District Historical Society for use as its headquarters and for display to the public as a house museum. The Society, which was founded in 1913, furnished the Cottage with loving care in the style of the 1830-1850's period and renamed it Hambledon Cottage. The building and gardens took on a new lease of life and thousands of visitors are shown through it annually.

The Drawing Room has been furnished in the style of the 1820's to 1850's. The room contains an 1830 Broadwood square piano and on the right is a Rosewood Davenport desk of 1850. A fine inlaid needlework table stands near the spoonbacked chair and in the other corner is an 1840 early Victorian mahogany sofa.

The Dining Room has a Georgian styled Honduras mahogany dining table which has gate legs and a drop leaf panel. The balloon backed cedar chairs complete the setting. The cedar curtain rod and rings are from the old Houison Bond House which was near Lennox Bridge, Parramatta. A feature is the fine cedar joinery of the fireplace, the cupboard door and the internal window shutters folded into the window reveals.

The Bedroom has cedar joinery and wide ironbark flooring boards. The magnificent four poster bed carved from cedar, came from the pioneer Payten family of Parramatta. The patchwork quilt from England dates back to 1865.

The Kitchen was originally detached from the main wing. It contains an open fireplace from which is hung hot water "fountains" - large kettles with taps to give a goodly supply of hot water. To the left of the fireplace is the domed oven for baking. Locally made bricks, pink and apricot in colour, are exposed to view in the kitchen. The pine and cedar furniture displays a collection of a number of earthenware, pewter and glass plates and moulds. These are associated with mid 19th century kitchens as is the hand mill, which was used for grinding wheat and corn.
Hambledon Cottage was built by John Macarthur in 1824 as a second house on his Elizabeth Farm Estate. It has had many occupants, but the most notable was Penelope Lucas, former governess to Macarthur's daughters. She named the family "Cottage" after the township of Hambledon in Hampshire, England.

Hambledon Cottage is built of rendered sandstock brick in the Colonial Georgian style, the joinery throughout is of Australian cedar and is a splendid example 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. An excellent example of a domed brick oven adjoins the open fireplace in the kitchen. The cottage is tastefully furnished in the style of the times.

For more information, click here

Parramatta City Council, as the owner of the building, restored the building and in 1965 leased it to the Society.  The cottage was opened for public inspection on 26 February 1966.

In 2002 & 2003 the cottage underwent further restoration and re-painting work. The Governor of NSW & the Lord Mayor of Parramatta officially opened these works on 15 November 2003. For more, click here.

In late 2004, there were extensive landscaping works in the reserve surrounding Hambledon Cottage and within the cottage grounds.

The Society opens Hambledon Cottage for public inspections (see below).
 
 INSPECTION TIMES

            Wednesdays                        )
            Thursdays                            )            11/00am  -  4/00pm
            Saturdays                             )
            Sundays                               )
            Other times by Appointment (see below)
Hambledon Cottage is open on most Public Holidays but closed on Good Friday, Christmas Day & Boxing Day.
 

ADMISSION FEES

ADULTS

$ 4.00

CONCESSIONS (Pensioners, Senior Cards, Full-time Students)

$ 3.00

CHILDREN (5 – 15 years)

$ 2.00

SCHOOL CHILDREN (in School Group)

(See below for special programmes)

GROUPS by appointment

Telephone or Fax  9635-6924 or e-mail to

mailto:parramattahistry@hotkey.net.au

SCHOOL GROUPS

School groups can be catered for through one of our two specially developed programmes.
For either tour, PRIOR BOOKINGS ARE ESSENTIAL (see contact details above).

A Visit Through Time
Students gain an empathy with the people who were associated with the cottage in the early 1800's. The role and differences in lifestyle between the Macarthurs (the masters) and their servants is explored. Hands-on activities allow students to experience aspects of life in that period. A visual worksheet is provided, giving children the opportunity to observe, illustrate and encourage further investigation and discussion.
                        Tour duration:    60 minutes
                        Cost:                $3.00 per student
                        Tour size:            36 students maximum
                        Requirements:    One Adult to come with group for each 12 students
                        For School:        Pre-visit notes available for teacher

Site Tour
Students observe the remarkable collection of furnishings and household implements in a tour of the house and garden.
                        Tour duration:    45 minutes
                        Cost:                $2.50 per student
                        Tour size:            36 students maximum
                        For School:        Notes on the site's history mailed out when a booking is made.
 

With special thanks to http://www.hotkey.net.au/~parramattahistry/index.html 

Special thanks to http://camwest.pps.com.au/heritage/index.html 

 

www.sydneyarchitecture.com 

links

http://www.hotkey.net.au/~parramattahistry/index.html 

http://faxmentis.org/index.html