Bank managers, while well thought of today, must have been absolutely worshipped years ago. And also paid significantly more. In 1886, the Queensland Turf Club sold five acres of land at Hendra to a Mr Edward Jones, who was the first Queensland manager of the Commercial Bank of Australia. During the period 1888-9, Jones had constructed on this land an extensive residence, designed by architect HGO Thomas, which he called "Dura". However, it's not Jones that we're interested in - by the time today's photo was taken in 1923, the house had a new name and a new owner.(Photo: State Library of Queensland and John Oxley Library; #145445)
The house became the property of well-known Brisbane businessman TC Beirne in 1898, and he decided to call it "Glengariff". It was to become the site of many functions and parties - as well as the huge house, the grounds boasted a tennis court and and croquet lawn. Beirne also engaged prominent architect Robin Dods to undertake some improvements in 1907.
(Photo: © 2009 the foto fanatic)
The Beirnes remained at Glengariff until TC Beirne died in 1949, at which time the house was bequeathed to the Catholic church which Beirne had supported all his life. The church held the property until 1985, using it to house senior religious personnel, and then it was sold to private owners. Since then, the size of the grounds has been reduced and some alterations have been made to the house - indeed on my recent visit there to take the photograph above, there was scaffolding and a tradesman's vehicles evident.
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