By Cathy Jones
‘Strathayne’ 60 Abbotsford Road Homebush is located on part Lots 14 and 13, Section 8 of the ‘Village of Homebush Estate’, a subdivision of the larger Underwood Estate.
By 1886, section 8 lots 11, 12, 13 and 14 were owned by Alexander Gregg. Gregg’s land included the current sites of 60 and 62-64 Abbotsford Road. Gregg was managing director of real estate agency Richardson and Wrench and lived at ‘Dunisla’ The Crescent (formerly Homebush Crescent) Homebush.
In 1888, ownership of lot 13 and 14 was transferred to John Waugh and by 1889, a house was built on this site and ownership had transferred to William Farmer. Waugh was a builder, and responsible for building many houses in Homebush during this period, including ‘Gowan Brae’ 62-64 Abbotsford Road. There is little evidence that Waugh lived in any of the houses he built in Homebush. It appears that he purchased the land, built and then sold the house or leased the house until it eventually sold.
The first owner was William Farmer who named the house ‘Strathayne’. Though the name varies in various directories, these are probably misspellings. Farmer occupied the house was a short period before leasing to William Reilly from c.1893-96. Though the house was owned from c.1906 by Thomas Hughes, it was leased to different occupants. One of these was John Bisset, the station master of Strathfield Rail Station. From about 1910 to 1917, the house was owned by accountant Francis Thomas and then by Richard Dill-Macky and his wife, Olwyn from around 1917-1924. Dill-Macky was the son of William Marcus Dill-Macky, a prominent Protestant. The Dill-Macky Home for Orphans operated in Albert Road Strathfield from 1921 (this building is now the Catholic Institute of Sydney). A later owner is Raymond Moore, an accountant, and from c.1960 Mrs Jean Ford.
In 2006, ‘Strathayne’ received a Strathfield Council heritage conservation award. The Award Citation was ‘Superior restoration, landscaping and use of colour schemes to a Victorian style villa, contributing highly to the streetscape of a heritage conservation area.’
Fox & Associates, Strathfield Heritage Study, 1986
Strathfield Council, Minutes of Council Meetings
Department of the Valuer General NSW – Valuation List – Valuation District of Strathfield
Notice of Land Transfer under Local Government Act 1919