Kurrumbede homestead and outbuildings formed the centre of a 6,600-acre (approx. 3000 h.a) station once owned by the Mackellar family for almost 40 years.
Located 25km north-west of Gunnedah on the Namoi River, the property ran both sheep and cattle together with wheat cropping.
The property was purchased by Sir Charles Mackellar in 1905 and was managed by his two sons Malcolm and Eric. His eldest son Keith died in the Boer War.
His only daughter Dorothea was a frequent visitor to Kurrumbede, reflected in her writings.
The homestead was built by the Mackellar family. The architect was John Reid, a family friend who lived in Sydney. It underwent substantial alterations in the 1950's but the footprint remains the same. The outbuildings are mostly unchanged since they were constructed, providing a fine example of a working station that hosted horses and dogs in domestic life. Cottages, men's quarters, stables, a stallion yard, hay silo, buggy shed, dog kennels and an underground meat locker are located to the rear of the homestead.
The gardens were extensive with a productive orchard and vegetable and flower gardens watered by the Namoi River.
The Mackellar family sold the property in 1939 and it remained in private ownership until it was bought by a coal company in 2010. The current owner Whitehaven Coal plans to establish an open cut mine 1.2 km from the homestead.
The company has stated its commitment to the preservation of the Kurrumbede homestead and garden. Whitehaven recently announced the allocation of $500,000 over three years to restore the garden. The Dorothea Mackellar Memorial Society has welcomed this initiative and will work with the company on this project.
For more information, follow these links:
To get in contact with the Dorothea Mackellar Memorial Society's Kurrumbede committee, email us here.
Images include portraits of Kurrumbede and its outbuildings, the Mackellar property "The Rampadells" and the Namoi River where the properties are situated.
Copyright © Reasy Design and Dorothea Mackellar Memorial Society Committee 2019