A Tudor manor house fit for the whole (royal) family
There are faux Tudor houses and there is Ashby in Cheltenham.
The landmark residence in the Tudor Revival style is probably the closest thing to the real deal – an early 20th century reimagining of an English country manor house.
The man behind its creation was the longest running chief justice of Australia, Sir Garfield Barwick (1964-1981).
Working with architect Charles Bohringer (who remodelled the Enmore Theatre in the jazz Art Deco style), Sir Garfield ensured his dream house at 94 The Crescent would stand out.
Its roofline remains the highest in Cheltenham.
Sir Garfield bought the 1491sq m property in 1929 when he was a young man, newly married to wife Norma.
It wasn’t until 1938 that he was able to build his Tudor-inspired home around a small house built on the block in 1926.
The English Tudor formula has been faithfully reproduced while the superior quality of building materials, superb craftsmanship and a floor plan to accommodate a growing family have ensured the property’s longevity.
Sir Garfield was a perfectionist who almost drove his architect and builders around the bend because of his attention to detail and an obsession with maintaining the Tudor form on the outside and inside.
The design elements tick all the Tudor boxes. The most notable are a steeply pitched gable roof, masonry chimneys with decorative chimney pots, lattice and leadlight windows and exposed wood framework with stone filling and stucco render (for a black-and-white effect).
Lesser known features include the Tudor arch that is replicated throughout the house, starting with an arched covered porch (port cochere) and front door of solid English Oak.
The entrance hall is constructed of the same warm timber, the wainscoting fixed with timber nails. A “substantial” timber staircase was imported from England.
The traditional floral heraldic emblem of England, the Tudor rose, is also at the centre of every original lattice window and ornate ceilings.
The house has four fireplaces, three open and one gas. Engraved into the apex of the Tudor arch fireplace in the sitting room is the crest of Sir Garfield’s alma mater, Fort St High School.
Sir Garfield sold the property in 1955.
The current owners bought it in 1979.
In the past 40 years, a family room has been added along with an upstairs bathroom. The property also contains a self-contained studio and inground pool.
Selling agent Nick Bedford from Belle Property Beecroft said the property’s presentation could not be faulted.
“The house is immaculate and so well preserved by the owners, framed by landscaped gardens on a large level block,” Mr Bedford said.
“There is nothing to compare it to. It is simply stunning.”
The property is for sale by expressions of interest.