Friday, 3 June 2011

Pursuits from the past

Paddington is an inner-city suburb, which started as very mixed socially. Nowadays, there are few terraces available for less than 1.5 million. Even the unrenovated ones sell quickly and fetch a pretty penny.

However, its past has not been completely obliterated! I discovered a chook pen, not all that far from where I live.

And somewhere there is a pigeon loft as I often see them wheeling up and down the escarpment. I must try to pinpoint them over time, and then track the loft down. Then all I would need is someone who keeps greyhounds in his backyard. The working-man's trifecta of pursuits from between the wars. My paternal grandfather did not keep chooks, but he did keep greyhounds and pigeons.

My guess is 1850 (give or take) for the top terrace - possibly built for a working-man. For the terrace below, I would estimate 1885 - and built for a merchant. Quite different, aren't they? They are two streets apart. The merchant's terrace might fetch between 3 and 4 million, I would hazard a guess.


Kay L. Davies said...

Wonderful about the chickens, Julie, and I'm sure you'll track down the pigeon loft, if I know you.
As for "keeping greyhounds" — why did your grandfather have them? Did he race them, or just raise them?
If I were young and energetic, I think it would be fun to try to update the working-person's house to look more like the merchant's dwelling. Domestic architecture and renovation-planning has always been a hobby of mine.
— K

Kay, Alberta, Canada
An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

Julie said...

Kay - I did not know that Grandpa kept greyhounds (I knew about the pigeons) until sometime in 2008, when I took Dad for a drive into Wentworth Park, which is the big greyhound track in central Sydney, near the fish market. As we sat there drinking our tea from the flask, and eating Scotch-finger Biscuits, he started into this rambling yarn about the old man's two greyhounds and how he and his brother had to 'run' them (behind their bicycles) down the gullies at the back of Hornsby. It all flooded back. Should have had a recorder going. Nah, Grandpa would not have raced them - to much effort and purpose for him. *grin*

Vicki said...

How wonderful that you have chooks in Paddington. No rooster, I hope. ;)

If it weren't for the foxes, we'd like to have a few hens.

Julie said...

I had chooks when a child, and my mind harks back to it. Yep, no rooster!

Dianne said...

Love the merchants terrace - love the chooks!

J Bar said...

Love seeing these terraces in the inner city.
Sydney - City and Suburbs

Ann said...

You don't see chooks much. Can't remember ever seeing them. Pigeon coops (and even they have gone now) but not chooks.

That little sandstone cottage is a stunner.

PerthDailyPhoto said...

Those old terrace houses are gorgeous Julie, gosh but they are expensive though! My son lives in Surrey Hills with his soon to be wife in a renovated factory on Bourke St. and I know their dream is to own one of the terraces in that area, they will have to stop eating out and holidaying if they want to realize that dream I think.
Best wishes

freefalling said...

Far out!!
3 or 4 million!!
It looks a lot like our faux terrace house in Melbourne. I reckon we'd be lucky to get 10% of that for ours!
Location, location, right?
I'm currently working on wearing down Vince to let me keep some chooks in our backyard.
It's a long process.
I'm also working on him (that sounds a little bit rude, doesn't it?) for a KitchenAid mixer, a pair of Merrell hiking boots and a three-wheeled bicycle. Sigh.
The things I have to do!
He's such a tyrant.

Julie said...

Some tyrant! I wore my hiking boots a coupla times this week. I think they are the most comfortable footware I own. Next Wednesday here is going to be 15C ... must be a misprint ...

Julie said...

Grace - the area is OTT, but I guess understandably so. I walked to Hyde Park today. Very easy. The streets are like a big living room. It is a most amenable suburb. And therefore, expensive. There are some unrenovated terraces left, but as I implied, they are in demand. The cashed-up boomers take all the apartments which come onto the market. YOung couples with kids don't stand a chance. YOu would need a home already and a family income of close to $500K I would estimate. In my street there have been two 3 storey terraces sell in the last 4 weeks. I don't know the prices (POA) but they went before auction. But there was a very nice 2 bdr apt in the Royal HOspital for Women redevelopment that was going for $1.85m. I think we are doing irreparable damage to the next generation by keeping the majority of our assets in our family home. I think they should abolish the first homebuyers grant and abolish ALL negative gearing. But, I rent so what would I know ...

Joan Elizabeth said...

Chooks are becoming increasingly popular. Even the hens can be very noisy with all their cluck clucking. I will have the merchants terrace thanks, even with my love shabbiness when it comes to living comforts I prefer to move up market.

brattcat said...

I've enjoyed this discussion nearly as much as I like the post. Could you show us the house in front of the chicken yard?

Julie said...

I will take a wander this weekend looking for the pigeons, and see if I can take a shot of the chook house via its back-lane. There is also a fascinating little handkerchief park that I want to bring to you where horses that pulled baker's vans were 'rested'. Just a few streets further over from the chooks.

Alan O'Riordan said...

Real estate prices do seem to be excessive here in Australia. There's a new 38-floor apartment building going up in South Yarra and the penthouse will go for a cool $15 million. Next grade down, $3 million a pop. And the cheapest 2-bedroom apartment will be $850,000 (presumably in the basement with no windows).

That said, we're having to double our budget for rent when we go back to London, so it could be worse:-)