Monthly Archives: January 2015

SAVE FROGMORE

At the last Council Meeting (16/12/2014), a petition (with approximately 1,000 verified signatures), was submitted to Council requesting that a heritage survey be conducted of the little known Frogmore House (1857) in Wahgoo Road, Carnegie.  A recent advice of a proposal to demolish and replace Frogmore, with a state of the art 120 bed aged care facility, made residents realise that Frogmore House had been overlooked in past Council heritage surveys and, therefore, did not have heritage classification. In addition to the petition, the residents have also lodged submissions, to include Frogmore House in the Victorian Heritage Register, with Heritage Victoria.

Frogmore House – current main entrance, Sept/Oct, 2014Exterior0012

GERA has been supporting the residents in their quest to have Frogmore House assessed for historical importance (social, cultural and heritage) as it is a significant property with potentially National and definite State and Local importance and is worthy of preservation.

As a result of the petition, Council “engaged a heritage adviser to “reassess” the heritage value of Frogmore House … the report is due within days” (Leader Article – 13/01/2015). While GERA is not aware of the content of the adviser’s report, GERA welcomes Heritage Victoria’s recent advise that, at Council’s initiation, an Interim Protection Order (IPO) has been issued for Frogmore House.   The IPO prevents any demolition works being undertaken until Heritage Victoria has completed an assessment and determination of the significance of Frogmore House.

GERA congratulates the residents who undertook substantial reasearch and organised the “Save Frogmore” campaign (a superb effort), those who signed the petition and Glen Eira Council, particularly Mayor Jim Magee, for initiating the IPO.

SIGNIFICANCE OF FROGMORE HOUSE

The following is a summary of the residents’ submissions to Heritage Victoria for the inclusion of Frogmore House in the Victorian Heritage Register.

Description

Original House – Artistic ImpressionFrogmore0001

Current Main Entrance – Sept/Oct. 2014Exterior0012

Frogmore House is an intact early single storey Italianate working farm family residence (with an ornate red brick tower, surrounding verandas on 3 sides and a garden setting with mature vegetation) built in 1857. It is situated in the former farmer settlement area then known as the Caulfield District and now known as suburban Carnegie/Murrumbeena .

Surrounding buildings, which obscure the street view of Frogmore House and are associated with Frogmore’s immediate past (65 years) usage as an aged care residence, are not included in the Heritage Listing Application.

Frogmore H&L

House area:        approx. 718 sqm (yellow) – comprising 6-8 rooms, linked by internal hallways, and a tower

Land area:           approx. 8000 sqm (red)

Current Condition

Over the years, the land area of the property has decreased and although various additions have been made in accordance with Frogmore’s aged care usage, these have been sympathetic

  • Externally the integrity and structure of the original house remains.  Additions, and their connection to the original working farm family residence havebeenwell considered in terms of
    • architectural styling and connectivity (via original doorways and windows)
    • Mature tree preservation
  • Internally, public access and residential areas retain original ceiling and wall mouldings and are well maintained. The tower staircase remains.

Tower  – original main entrance (Sept/Oct. 2014)Exterior0001

 Original Bay Window and polychromatic brickwork with rear sympathetic polychromatic addition – Sept/Oct. 2014Exterior0008

 Tower staircase – Sept/Oct. 2014Tower Staircase0001

 Corridor Crossing – Sept/Oct. 2014Interior 20007

 Statement of cultural heritage significance:

 Frogmore House was designed by renowned Architect Joseph Reed, as the working farm/family residence for William Lyall (a significant Scottish Pioneer who was in residence 1857-1868). In 1868 it became the residence of Archibald McLaurin (another significant Scottish Pioneer who was in residence 1868 to 1891).

Joseph Reed (1823?-1890) Cornish Architect who arrived in Victoria during the Gold Rush (1853)

  • “A dominant figure during Melbourne’s period of greatest growth, Reed was responsible for some of the largest and most important building commission in the city and in doing so was instrumental in making Melbourne one of the great Victorian cities” (Goad and Willis)
  • As well as prominent city buildings, Reed also designed smaller buildings and residences and was renowned for designing according to the intended “function of the building”.
    • Some prominent city buildings designed by Reed are Geelong Town Hall (1854), Melbourne Public Library (1854), Melbourne Town Hall (1864), Independent Church (1866) and the world heritage listed Exhibition Buildings (1878)
    • While few of the residences designed by Reed remain today, 2 exist within Glen Eira.
      • Frogmore House (1857) , designed in the Italianate* style as a single storey working farm/family residence (6-8 rooms). It features polychromatic (two tone) brick work, bay windows, an ornate red brick tower and surrounding verandas on 3 sides and
      • The much grander Rippon Lea (1868), also designed in the Italiante* style (Lombardic Romanesque) as a two-storey, 15 room house for a successful (former goldfields) merchant’s family residence and estate. It features polychromatic (three tone) brickwork and an extensive pleasure garden around the house.    Rippon Lea, circa 1880.  Rippon Lea has experienced alterations and additions over time.

William Lyall (1821-1888) – Resided at Frogmore 1857-1868.

  • a Scottish immigrant originally to Van Diemens Land, moved to Melbourne in 1847 and became a successful livestock merchant and noted Melbourne pastoralist
  • He returned to England and studied agricultural chemistry in Britain (1854-1856), returning to Victoria with stud livestock and gained a reputation as a stock breeder (cattle and sheep, race horses and game birds) with sales within Victoria and to Tasmania, NSW and New Zealand.
  • He established a model farm at Frogmore Estate (originally 93 acres (37.6 ha), expanded to 212 acres (85.8 ha)). Both at Frogmore’s model farm and a Tooradin property he pursued practical and innovative farming practices (seeds and pastures) and animal husbandry techniques
  • He was a regular contributor to the “Argus” writing articles on animal husbandry and other agricultural matters
  • The Public Offices held by Lyall, while residing at Frogmore, include founder of the Victorian Agricultural Society, Zoological Society, Acclimatisation Society (Southern vs Northern Hemisphere impacts on pasture plantings and livestock) and Victoria Racing Club, member of the National Agricultural Society, Member of the Legislative Assembly (Mornington 1859-1861) and Territorial Magistrate.

Archibald McLaurin, J.P. (NSW) (1815 -1891) Resided at Frogmore 1868-1891.

  • A Scottish immigrant (1839), one of the first overlanders and a noted pastoralist in Port Phillip and New South Wales
  • In the late 1860’s he sold his pastoral interests and acquired Frogmore where he lived until his death in 1891. While at Frogmore he grazed sheep (at Frogmore and Mordialloc) and was active in the community and local affairs (he was a Caulfield Shire Councillor)
  • He encouraged Scottish migration for the development of Victoria and the development of Murrumbeena area as a farmer-settler community in the 1860’s to 1870’s
  • In 1891 he donated two blocks of land (east side of Murrumbeena Road) for the building of a Presbyterian Church – now St. Giles Uniting Church

Following the death of Archibald McLaurin, during the period 1891-1951 details on the subsequent occupants (owners and or tenants) of Frogmore are limited (eg.  1906 – Gairdner, 1913 – J.G. Thompson, 1921 – L.O. Menck, 1925-1945 – J. Keys).   However, various period documents and newspaper articles record Frogmore House as hosting Melbourne society functions/gatherings, Church Services and Fund Raising events throughout this period.

In 1951, Frogmore House was acquired by the Churches of Christ  and operated as the “William Clay Nursing Home” (originally 25, later extended to 48 beds). In the 1990’s it was further extended to 60 beds and renamed “Betheden”.   As previously mentioned, although various additions have been made in accordance with Frogmore’s 65 years of continuing aged care usage, these additions have been sympathetic to the integrity and structure of the original house and the interior has been well maintained.

HERITAGE VICTORIA SIGNIFICANCE CRITERIA – FROGMORE ASSESSMENT

 Criterion A – Importance to the course, or pattern, of Victoria’s cultural history.

  • Example of a grand early working farm family residence whose early owners included pastoralists, actively involved with the development of Melbourne and Victoria. It’s location in Carnegie demonstrates the pattern of land settlement as Melbourne and Victoria developed.

Criterion B – Possession of uncommon, rare or endangered aspects of Victoria’s cultural history.

  • Frogmore House is a rare example of an early (1857) Italianate* single storey working farm family residence in the former Caulfield District of Melbourne. Few residences remain from the 1850s.
  • Other remaining Glen Eira heritage listed 1857 single storey residences (Rosecraddock and Halstead)

Comparison and map T

 Comparison: Frogmore with Rosecraddock and Halstead

  • although all three are described as Italianate* in style, each represents diverse interpretations of that style (Rosecraddock does not feature a tower and although Halstead does have a three storey tower – with a Mansard roof and cast-iron balustrade – it is significantly different from Frogmore’s two storey polychromatic renaissance style brick tower)
  • bothRosecraddock and Halstead
    • are stuccoed and do not feature polychromatic brickwork
    • are not attributable to a known architect (although Rosecraddock’s recessed central verandah section and cast iron lace, added in the 1880’s,  is attributed to architect Lloyd Tayler).
    • have been considerably altered over time (Rosecraddock in the period 1850’s – 1880’s and with a recent subdivision and stable relocation/conversion ; Halstead’s heritage recognition acknowledges a history of alteration and addition.)
    • were designed and constructed as residences of wealthy Melbournian Public Servants and Merchants rather than as a functioning model farm and family residence (of a wealthy livestock merchant and pastoralist interested in practical and innovative animal husbandry practices and pasture improvements).
  • locations represent their importance in the socio-economic history of south eastern suburban Melbourne, whereas Frogmore’s simultaneous construction emphasizes the inland pattern of development as well as that socio-economic history.

Criterion C – Potential to yield information that will contribute to an understanding of Victoria’s cultural heritage

  • Significance of pasture experimentation and animal husbandry innovations on the development of Victoria -Lyall
  • Encouraged Scottish migration and development (farmer-settlers) of Victoria and Caulfield District (now Melbourne and in particular Carnegie/Murrumbeena) – McLaurin and Lyall .

Criterion F – Importance in demonstrating high degree of creative or technical achievement at a particular period

  • Joseph Reed – diversity and development of architectural design in private (Frogmore, Rippon Lea) and public buildings (Parliament House, Exhibition Buildings)
  • William Lyall – successful livestock merchant (imported stud bloodlines) and innovations/experimentations with pastures (grasses and seeds) and animal husbandry.
  • Archibald McLaurin – pioneer and noted pastoralist

Criterion G – Strong or special association with a particular community or cultural group for social cultural or spiritual reasons

  • Aboriginal – nomination of street names eg. Bambra, originally Cambrook – now Kambrook, Koornang and Neerim (accredited to Lyall)
  • Scottish Community (Lyall and McLaurin). Scottish St names in Murrumbeena – Ardyne Street, Innellan Road, Ariadne Avenue, Dunoon Street, McLaurin Road
  • Pastoralist Community (Lyall and McLaurin)
  • Founder of the Victorian Agricultural Society, Zoological Society, Acclimatisation Society and Victoria Racing Club (Lyall)
  • Religious Community (Lyall, McLaurin and Presbyterian/Uniting Church, Churches of Christ)
  • Hosting social and community events (Lyall and McLaurin and other owners/tennants)

Criterion H – Special association with the life or works of a person or group of persons of importance in Victoria’s history

  • Joseph Reed
  • William Lyall
  • Archibald McLaurin
  • Presbyterian/Uniting Church/Church’s of Christ

 **********

Footnote:

Italianate Style – featured asymmetry and, usually, a tower of varying size. In Australia, the addition of the verandah, sometimes arcaded but later in Filigree (wrought iron), gave a regional flavour to the style.

 

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EXTENDED LIQUOR LICENCE AND OUTDOOR CINEMA – CAULFIELD RACECOURSE RESERVE

UPDATE

PLANNING CONFERENCE – 5/2/2015

The following is a summary of the Planning Conference, chaired by Cr. Delahunty, for the Outdoor Cinema Planning Permit Application

  • The Extended Liquor Licence, attached as supporting documentation, is a copy of the MRC’s existing Liquor Licence.   The area for the Outdoor Cinema (Area 1 in the below posting) was stated (by the MRC representative) as being within MRC’s existing lease agreements, however, no statement was made on the leasing agreement status of the Car Boot Village Precinct (Area 2 in the below posting).
  • Council was requested to confirm that the Outdoor Cinema Area is within the existing lease agreements and that Trustee Approval for the Cinema has been obtained.
  • All facilities (ie screen, toilets, food and beverage services) associated with the Outdoor Cinema will be temporary in nature.
  • The permit closing time of 1 a.m. provides for cleaning and clearing of the Outdoor Cinema area to occur immediately after the departure of Cinema patrons.
  • Despite resident attendees raising the issues outlined in the below posting, immediately after formally closing the planning conference, Cr. Delahunty informally commented that the permit application would be granted for the full 365 days.

27/1/2015 – The DPC Hearing scheduled for this Thursday (29/1/2015) has been cancelled and is to be replaced with a more appropriate decision making process that involves Councillors and a Council Meeting decision. The  Hearing is to be replaced with a Planning Conference (5/2/2015 @ 6.30 p.m. – Glen Eira Town Hall, Caulfield Cup Room).  As per our previous advice – Council’s policy is to accept and consider all objections received up until the Committee Hearing or Planning Conference (now 5/2/2015), hence residents wishing to object can still do so.

22/1/015 – Delegated Planning Committee (DPC) Hearing to be held on 29/1/2015 at 1.30 p.m.    Council’s policy is to accept all objections received up until the Committee Hearing or Planning Conference, hence residents wishing to object can still do so.

*********************

Residents should be extremely concerned about the recent planning permit application signs placed around the Caulfield Racecourse Reserve (CRR) prior to the Christmas/New Year break. Despite the strong criticism, of both the Trustees’ management of the Reserve and the oversight of the Department of Environment and Primary Industry (DEPI), contained in the September, 2014 Auditor General’s Performance Audit of the Caulfield Racecourse Reserve, it appears that the racing industry is seeking to expand its use of the reserve for commercial activities.

The Planning Permit Application (GE/PP-27172/2014) is for “Use of land for a Place of Assembly (Outdoor Cinema)”.

 

  • The Outdoor Cinema does not, as many may have assumed, use the recently approved “$4m Electronic Screen”  permanently located in front of the Grandstand (S). It is a separate mobile facility which will be located between the course proper and the Administration Building (Area 1).
  • Includes an application for an extended liquor license applicable to both the outdoor cinema (Area 1) and the Car Boot Village area within the centre of the Racecourse (Area 2).

As per the information outlined below, both the Outdoor Cinema and liquor license will/may operate 365 days per year until 1 a.m. and will involve permanent or temporary installation of service facilities.

 AUDITOR GENERAL PERFORMANCE AUDIT SUMMARY

  • The Caulfield Racecourse Reserve comprises some 54 hectares of Crown Land created by a Crown Grant in 1858 for three separate yet equal purposes – racecourse, public park (passive usage) and public recreation ground (active usage). Over the years, various subsequent Acts of Parliament have re-iterated and re-enforced these three purposes and their equality.
  • Management of the reserve in accordance with the above three purposes has been provided by a Board of Trustees comprising 6 representatives nominated by the DEPI, 6 representatives nominated by the MRC and 3 nominated incumbent Councillors. The DEPI is entrusted with overseeing the Trustees management of the reserve in accordance with the three separate yet equal purposes.
  • “Historically, the trust’s decisions have disproportionately favoured racing interests with insufficient attention paid to fulfilling the community-related purposes of the reserve.

Of the approximate 54 hectares of land at the reserve:

  • 11 hectares – approximately 20 per cent – is under lease to MRC—the grandstand, Neerim Road Stables and Western Stables
  • 37 hectares – approximately 69 per cent – is used by MRC without any clear legal entitlement or payment arrangement
  • the remaining 6 hectares – approximately 11 per cent – is open space for the potential use by the community during prescribed hours.

As a result, the amount of space available for the community is limited and does not equitably meet the community-related purposes in the Crown grant.”

 ie public park purpose is 67% vs. public access area of 11% (6 ha) whereas the racecourse purpose is 33% vs. racing usage area of 89% (48ha of which 11 ha is leased and 37 ha without apparent entitlement or  payment or publicly available justification)

 “Despite a reported $1.8 million upgrade to the centre of the reserve, public space within the reserve is limited, unwelcoming,  not easy to reach and the recreational facilities are limited.”

 PLANNING PERMIT APPLICATION DETAILS

Extended Liquor Licence ApplicationApplicant: Victorian Amateur Turf Club (VATC) for the “supply of liquor in the course of catering for events, social receptions or social functions in premises other than the licensed premises during trading hours”.

  • “Premises other than licensed premises” being the referenced lawn areas numbered above
    • Between the Racecourse proper and the Administration Building and the Black Caviar Pavilion (Area 1)
    • The Car Boot Village Area (Area 2 – estimated to be 1.1 ha) which although designated a public access area during the 2011 landscaping has, without any publicly available justification, since been designated a restricted area.
  • “Licensed Premises” being as per existing liquor license/s
    • Grandstand/Function Centre Complex – lease under review
    • Glasshouse Restaurant, Café, Bar and Tabaret – lease under review
    • Black Caviar Pavilion – no lease agreement                       
  • Temporary and/or permanent bar facilities will be located in both areas 1 & 2.
  • Trading Hours will be
    • Good Friday and Anzac Days – between 12 noon and 1 a.m.
    • On any other day – between 7 a.m. and 1 a.m.

Place of Assembly (Outdoor Cinema) ApplicationApplicant: Melbourne Racing Club (MRC)

  • Cinema use will be primarily between November – March with an option to extend this usage throughout the year. No indication is given of expected weekly or daily usage (eg. weekends only, 7 days per week).
  • Sessions will run from dusk to 1 a.m.
  • Expected average attendance is 500 patrons per session with car parking being provided via the Guineas Carpark (500 spaces) which is greater than the car parking requirements for Places of Assembly (0.3 car spaces per patron = 150 car parking spaces). Since the Guineas Car Park is also expected to provide parking for the patrons and visitors of the Caulfield Village Development, any overflow car parking requirements are to be serviced by the MRC’s numerous other car parks.
  • The 7m high x 11m long Movie Screen will be mobile (ie. located on flat bed truck)
  • Cinema activities will be fully contained between Racecourse Proper and the Administration Building (Area 1). Food and beverages will be available from the Black Caviar Pavilion and may also be brought in by patrons.
  • Toilet and other facilities are available nearby on the course and will prominently signed.
  • A localised audio system will be used within EPA guidelines.
  • Lighting of the area will be necessary for safety requirements, however, the screen will be the primary light source.

 Justification for the Cinema Proposal – Prepared by Beveridge Williams on behalf of the MRC.

  • “The proposed use offers a unique entertainment experience in proximity to complementary enterprises such as dining and food outlets within the Phoenix Precinct Area
  • “Access to parking at the Racecourse is available with minimal impact to the Community”
  • “The proposed outdoor cinema makes use of an entertainment facility that would otherwise lie idle during the proposed hours of operation”
  • The proposed outdoor cinema is to be located in the northern part of the Racecourse. This location has been chosen for various reasons including
    • Proximity to the Guineas Car Park
    • Ability to locate the screen in an optimal viewing area
    • Ability to locate temporary food selling facilities nearby
    • View of the racecourse afforded to visitors.
  • The MRC has received the approval of the public land manager of the Reserve.

GERA’s CONCERNS

  • The statement that the public land manager has approved the proposed outdoor cinema is not supported by documentation attached to the application.TheDEPI letter, dated 1/9/2014, rather than giving approval, outlines the conditions required for approval. These conditions being
    • A lease agreement being in place
    • That the outdoor cinema is within the lease area
    • That the approval of the Caulfield Racecourse Reserve Trust (CRRT) has been obtained.

No documentation re a lease agreement or approval of the CRRT has been provided.

  • Details of the application for the Extended Liquor License are presented “in support” of the Outdoor Cinema application yet is not specifically mentioned in that application. Surely, it should be part of the application and be supported by explicit approvals of the DEPI and Trustees. No documentation re a lease agreement or CRRT approval has been provided.
  • Provision of Car Parking – It is proposed that cinema (and presumably Car Boot Village Functions) car parking will be provided by the Guineas Car Park (500 spaces) which exceeds the specified requirement of 3 car spaces per patron = 150 car parking spaces. The report mentions the Guineas Car Park will also be used by Caulfield Village residents, visitors and patrons. However, it does not mention that the Guineas Car Park will also be used for events held in the Grandstand/Function Complex and the Car Boot Village Area and by Glass House Tabaret patrons. No analysis of car parking demand has been presented in support of the comments that any overflow car parking requirements are to be serviced by the MRC’s numerous other car parks” and that there will be “minimal impact to the Community”.
  • The comment that “The proposed outdoor cinema makes use of an entertainment facility that would otherwise lie idle during the proposed hours of operation” does not address the issue of inequitable parkland usage. Unlike other public parks, public access to both the Outdoor Cinema area and the Car Boot Village areas are currently permitted between 9.45 a.m. and dusk – ergo those facilities are idle because the public is denied access. It also begs the question of why public park usage is not permitted between 7.00 a.m. and 1 a.m. yet commercial activities, accompanied by liquor service, is permitted.
  • Insufficient information provided on the installation of “temporary and/or permanent facilities” bar service facilities to be located within Outdoor Cinema and the Car Boot Village area.   No other information is provided and without additional information it is impossible to make an assessment – any decision made will provide full discretionary authority or a carte blanche to the MRC and VATC which will be extremely difficult to modify.

Given our above comments on the application itself, GERA believes that the application as presented should not be approved as

  • the application (Outdoor Cinema and Liquor License) disproportionately favours racing usage of the reserve (for commercial activities) at the expense of the public park usage.
  • does not include appropriate land manager approvals
  • lacks details on what is being requested and
  • does not provide adequate assessments on parking issues or amenity impacts (park users, current and future residents)

In addition when viewed in the context of the

  • Unresolved issues on the CRRT management of the Reserve raised by the Auditor General
  • The current unresolved leasing issues between the MRC and the Trustees
  • The newly elected governments decision to review the management structure of the reserve

GERA believes it is inappropriate for Council to make a decision on the application and the application should be held in abeyance until formal unconditional approval is provided by the DEPI and CRRT.

MANAGEMENT OF THE CAULFIELD RACECOURSE RESERVE – Auditor General Report

Once again our apologies – a technical issue prevents GERA presenting the previously promised update on the Auditor General’s Report which was extremely critical of both the management of the Caulfield Racecourse Reserve by the Trustees of the Reserve and of the Department of the Environment and Primary Industry (charged with overseeing the Trustees management of the Reserve for the three separate yet equal purposes of racecourse, public park and public recreation ground)

We will publish the update as soon as this technical issue is resolved.

PLANNING FORUM UPDATE – PART 1

Again our apologies – unfortunately, due to a technical issue, we are unable to present this update on our November, 2014 forum. We will publish the update as soon as the technical issue is resolved.

 

 

PLANNING FORUM UPDATE – PART 2

Apologies – unfortunately, due to a technical issue, we are unable to present this update on our November, 2014 forum. We will publish the update as soon as the technical issue is resolved.