Buildings Strathfield Council

2 Barker Road Strathfield

2 Barker Road Strathfield. Photo - Cathy Jones (2004)
2 Barker Road Strathfield. Photo - Cathy Jones (2004)
2 Barker Road Strathfield. Photo – Cathy Jones (2004)

Historical information on 2 Barker Road Strathfield is provided in response to requests for further information on the history of the property and Bunya Pine trees, which appear to have been recently poisoned.

‘Lyndoch Place’, 2 Barker Road was built in 1933 on the ‘Wynola Estate’, which was subdivided in 1925 and created lots in Chalmers Road and Barker Road Strathfield. The house was built at cost of £3500 by local builder Sydney Skinner for owner Donald Saxton of Saxton & Binns, timber joinery and builders supply merchants of Pyrmont. The house was originally called ‘Pindari’.

The house is heritage listed on Strathfield Council’s Local Environmental Plan and is described as ‘a good representative example of the Inter-War Old English style incorporating multiple gables, imitation half timbering, herringbone brickwork and tall chimneys…it is a prominent element in the streetscape’.

This house was later the home of Lancelot Bush, of A J Bush & Sons Pty Ltd. A J Bush Pty Ltd was established in Sydney in 1921 by A J Bush and are national manufacturers of meat, operating over 30 retail shops across NSW. The headquarters of A J Bush & Sons Pty Ltd is located in Homebush.

The prominent Bunya Pines (Anaucaria Bidwilli), located on the corner of Barker and Chalmers Road, are listed as landmark trees on Strathfield Council’s Significant Tree Register and are estimated to have been planted in the 1930’s, when this house was first built.

5 comments on “2 Barker Road Strathfield

  1. Scott Brandon Smith

    What is happening to the Homebush and Strathfield of our childhood … burned, poisoned and left to rot. Do council or heritage authorities care? Do they have any power? As these questions are asked two handsome and important suburbs are being destroyed. The recent histories of the Bush homes are devastating. Sadly it is the story of Sydney in the last few decades from Mosman to Bellevue Hill to Strathfield and no one seems to care.

  2. Dear Cathy
    I think there is the possibility that the trees are older as part of the formal corner entry to White’s House [ subsequently the Bullen’s residence] nearer Newton Road as all these lots have been progressively re-subdivided.
    If SMC does not hold the line here- then this style of redevelopment by stealth on large old lots will continue.
    NB there is more than adequate documentation of the home and interiors before its “demolition by neglect” began.
    Two subsequent owners after the 2009 redevelopment proposal have knowingly bought a heritage property but must believe they can out wait the authorities and neglect.
    There are two aspects acting as imperatives here:
    1. the property consists of a corner block of 2 lots- hence it si easily sub-dividable and you double your money;
    2 the original assessment and listing descriptor by Fox Assoc was inadequate and largely commented on the Bunya’s only. Hence if they are gone the listing is less sound.
    The new fence footings also imperilled the trees and were a rort only to suggest substantial commencement before the the original DA’s 5 years ran out.
    Patrick O’Carrigan
    Architect

  3. Scott Brandon Smith

    Good point Patrick regarding the entrance trees and it sounds highly possible that they pre-date the existing house. I wonder what photos pre-subdivision of Wynola exist other than the one that Cathy has shown? It is very easy to imagine a pair of Bunya Pines as the entry to a large late-Victorian/Edwardian residential estate. Is there evidence of the original drive and its entry point? Chalmers/Barker or Chalmers Albyn are both likely and maybe both would make an impressive in and out drive or was there one set of gates and a carriage loop? What can we as concerned citizens do? Is it appropriate to write to SMC and suggest that these landmark trees be replaced with relatively mature specimens by the current owners or should they insist that the dead trees be retained with signage and hoardings explaining that they have most likely been poisoned? As usual Cathy congratulations on the great service you do by maintaining this excellent and informative site. Scott
    Scott

    • Scott

      I rechecked the Significant Tree Register for Strathfield, which was prepared in 1995 and you and Patrick may be correct that the trees predate the house as the inventory sheet states the trees were 70+ years in age in 1995 (eg at least 1920s). By the way, copies of Significant Tree Registers and Heritage Inventory Sheets are available at Strathfield Library at Homebush or copies will be made available to anyone who requests information from Strathfield Council (phone 9748 9999 or email: council@strathfield.nsw.gov.au). All this information are open access documents from Council.

      Description is from the Significant Tree Register Inventory Sheet.

      Cathy

      Cultural Plantings: 2 Bunya Pines (Araucaria bidwillii)
      Botanical Name: Araucaria bidwillii
      Common Name: Bunya Pine
      Significance Attributes: pair of rain forest specimen plantings, historic/ cultural, visual (local streetscape/ district)
      Origin: ornamental/cultivated (south-eastern Queensland)
      Location: Pines are formally located in the front garden, each side of the driveway; Pine A is adjacent to the Barker Street frontage and Pine B is on the Chalmers Street frontage.
      Extent of Influence: Approximately 30% of Pine A canopy overhangs the Barker Street footpath and verge; 20% of Pine B canopy extends over Chalmers Street footpath and verge.
      Height: A: 18 metres; B: 17 metres
      Canopy Spread: A: 10 metres; B: 8 metres
      Trunk Diameter: A: 600mm; B: 700mm (@ 1.0 metre above ground level)
      Estimated Age: 70 years+
      Condition/Health: Pines are in good to excellent condition and health with relatively dense, well-developed crowns, strong apical growth and little dead wood present. Pine A is a slightly larger, more robust and vigorous specimen.
      Management Recommendations: No immediate threats or problems evident. Recommend periodic inspections by an arborist together with a programme of mulching, fertilizing and deep watering.
      Statement of Significance
      These two magnificent Bunya Pines (Araucaria bidwillii) are an outstanding historic planting of particular visual prominence at the corner of the Chalmers Street and Barker Road intersection. These native dry rain forest pines, with their sombre dark-green foliage, imposing scale and distinctive symmetrical forms, stand out as prominent landmarks at this corner along the old vehicular processional route to Rookwood Cemetery. This species is an important cultural, historic and ecclesiastic component of the Strathfield landscape with other significant plantings occurring nearby at the A.C.U., Mount st. Mary Campus, 179 Albert Road and the Sydney Adventist College, Albert Road (see listings).

  4. Patrick

    You may be correct about the age of the trees. I did ask Council’s former Tree Coordinator and it was estimated the age of trees was about 1930s, when this house was built. I had assumed that they were part of the entry into the old ‘Wynola’ estate (Wynola was later known as the White House). I have published an old photo of Wynola that I found on an estate advertisment a few years ago. It is on the page on history of Wynola on this site.

    The property was heritage listed by Local Environmental Plan 2012 (which incorporated draft LEP 105). The heritage assessment is not based on the Fox & Associates Study in 1986, it was prepared with the more recent LEPs.

    Apparently a development application has been lodged with Strathfield Council to demolish the building. I just drove past the house and the signs notifying tree vandalism have been erected on both Barker Road and Chalmers Road. The Council meeting before Christmas endorsed the Mayor’s proposal to extend nofification to residents of the Development application until 31 January 2015. The relevant papers are displayed at http://www.strathfield.nsw.gov.au/home/development/development-notifications-2/2-4-barker-road-strathfield/

    Cathy

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