by Cathy Jones
‘Wiumba’ 61 Churchill Ave Strathfield is built on a 1903 subdivision that was marketed as the ‘Kings Estate’. The estate was subdivided by Robert Joshua King (d.1934) and Mary Ann Balmain (d.1943), the wife of surveyor and Town Clerk of Strathfield Council, John Hope Balmain. The Kings Estate created the western end of Churchill Avenue (then called The Avenue), Redmyre Road (part) and Homebush Road (part).
John Lyon Gardner purchased Lot 12 on 10 October 1905. Gardner was a local and prolific builder and it is likely that he built the present house before selling the property to Charles Moore Kellick. Kellick was a cricketer and public servant. He played cricket against first English visitors in the 1860s and for New South Wales in international matches. Kellick was employed by the New South Wales Government Printing Office from 1860-96. The house was called ‘Wiumba’. Charles Kellick and his wife Christina lived with there until the death of Charles in 1918. The property was then transferred to Christina who continued to live there until her death in 1925. ‘Wiumba’ was then sold in 1926 to John Bruce Greig of NSW, later the paymaster of New South Wales railways. The property remained in his name until 1970.