Formerly a row of four, the remaining three of this row of single storey Queen Anne terraced cottages tells the sad tale of heritage in Melbourne’s Hawthorn which is being assailed by development from all directions. Just a stones throw from the magnificent Auburn Road precinct reknowned for its late Victorian streetscapes, this row however has no heritage protection and it shows. One of the end terraces (28) has already been demolished to become a rear access driveway for a showroom/factory complete with a lovely barb wire fence. The row is unfortunately heavily obscured by evergreen shrubs. The terrace pictured (number 26) which although unoccupied and derelect is in the most original condition, but currently advertised for sale as a development site.
The architecture of these narrow single fronted terraces is typical of the 1890s. Bluestone foundations, red brick and unpainted render with high detail. The main gable roofs were originally slate, and 26 has retained its roof, although missing some tiles with the verandahs of corrugated iron. The other main roofs have however been replaced by a mix of terracotta (24) and corrugated iron. Each terrace has a single Queen Anne styled chimney. The party walls protrude blade style, something relatively rare in Melbourne. They terminate in vermiculated ends with acanthus leaf corbels.
Some transitional Edwardian detail is evident. One of the rooms projects forward to form a wall constraining the proportions of the entry verandah. The floor of the entryway is covered by geometrical parquetry tiles. The facade treatment around the verandahs are notable with modillion intersperced with floral emblems on the upper eaves but the most interesting aspect is the deep fringe of wooden fretwork in the form of a vertically slatted frieze, scroll shaped and parenthesis combination brackets. Such a combination is particularly rare in Melbourne terraces.
Update: Sadly this residence was demolished in November 2011 to make way for a concrete carpark.