Statement of Significance
John Marr, William P. Scott and Charles Gray took up the Green Hill Creek squatting run, at Lake Repose in 1840. Scott soon left the partnership and Green Hill Creek was subdivided in 1846, Marr taking the northern half as Brie Brie and Gray the other as Nareeb Nareeb. John Marr probably built the oldest dwelling surviving on the property which was later used as a shearer's kitchen. He may have built some of the other early buildings such as the unusual combined stable, coachhouse and barn. He died in 1858 in middle age and the property passed to his financiers and executors, Horace Flower and the Hutton brothers, George, Thomas and John who were substantial merchants and businessmen in Belfast (Port Fairy) with extensive pastoral interests of their own. In late 1863 Brie Brie passed to a British based partnership, John Sanderson and Co. which also owned neighbouring runs. It was run by John Sanderson and William Murray, Scots who were related. This model parallels the famous arrangement of Neil Black managing Glenormiston for Neil Black and Co. John Sanderson built the second homestead about 1863 but went to London to manage the partnership's interests there leaving William Murray in charge. He too went to London and his son John Hutchinson Murray eventually ran the property with the continuing help of Walter Gow, another reliable Scot. Gow would have lived in the bluestone manager's cottage which survives. Other working buildings, such as the woolshed, men's quarters and wool classer's hut date from the twentieth century, replacements of those lost to bush fires. Brie Brie was famous as a very successful stud and producer of fine wool. In this it parallels its immediate neighbour and 'sibling', Nareeb Nareeb under Charles Gray and subsequently the Beggs family. The second homestead burnt down in 1891. A new one was built in the position of the present homestead only to be burnt accidentally in 1924. The fourth homestead was built soon afterwards in the fashionable American Bungalow idiom. No architect or builder has been associated with its design and construction. It remains in very good condition with an excellent degree of integrity. In 1895 John Murray established a nine hole golf course, which was one of the only private courses in Victoria, part of which survives. One of the most important components of the homestead complex is the rare private cemetery. It includes the graves and memorials of many of the owners of Brie Brie as well as others connected with the place. Brie Brie was purchased by Ian and Audrey Mann in 1936 who had important pastoral connections in the western District. They died in 1996 and are buried in the cemetery. Brie Brie remains in he Manns' ownership.
How is it significant?
Brie Brie homestead is of historic and architectural significance to the Shire of Southern Grampians and to the State of Victoria.
Why is it significant?
Brie Brie Homestead Complex is of historic significance for its early beginnings and connections with the squatter, John Marr and his financiers and executors, the Port Fairy merchants and businessmen, Horace Flower and the Hutton Brothers. Subsequently it was connected with the British based John Sanderson and Co. partnership, one of the few examples of such capital arrangements in pastoral Victoria. This period is marked by championship-winning sheep and top prices for fleeces. The third chapter of the historical significance of Brie Brie is represented in its ownership by the Mann family, which also has deep roots in the development of the Western District. Although ravaged by successive bushfires and affected by economic and social changes, the Brie Brie Homestead complex reflects the sequential development of the place, its endurance against adversity and its continuing success as a stud and wool growing property.
Brie Brie Homestead Complex is of architectural significance for its typical range and assemblage of buildings within a broad landscape setting, now dominated by the present homestead, the fourth dwelling, which is one of the finest examples of the American Bungalow idiom in the Western District.
The private cemetery at Brie Brie is of special significance for its combination of historical and aesthetic values.
BRIE BRIE HOMESTEAD COMPLEX - Physical Conditions
The buildings are in various cinditions. The present homestead is in excellent condition. The stables, coachhouse and barn building is in good condition. The manager's residence is in good condition. The woolshed is in good condition. The men's quarters and wool classer's hut are in fair condition.
BRIE BRIE HOMESTEAD COMPLEX - Physical Description 1
What may be the original homestead survives in the north-east corner of the complex. Later used as a kitchen for the shearers, it is a four room vernacular cottage. It has two parallel hipped roofs, one over the front stone section, the other over the rear timber section, suggesting construction in two stages, although the roofs are linked by a ridgeline on the west elevation. There are two brick chimneys on the west elevation. The front windows are now six panes in metal frames, of uncertain date and origin but possibly replacements of earlier casement windows. The interiors have coved ceilings with lining boards and the walls of the rear rooms are lined with boards. An early dresser and a mid-twentieth combustion stove survive in the main kitchen. A small cream brick front porch and a cream brick extension on the east side have been added, probably after the Second World War. Almost certainly, the bricks are from the Glenthompson Brickworks. Nearby is what is described as the "original" homestead site
The men's quarters and wool classer's hut are some distance in front of the kitchen. These are timber framed and clad with corrugated iron. The men's quarters comprise four separate rooms with extensions at either end for services. The building appears to date from the mid-twentieth century and is the replacement of one lost to fire. The wool classer's hut, effectively a single room, is more primitive and may date from the 1920s. The large corrugated iron woolshed is further to the north and dates from 1920.
Near the men's quarters there are two very old trees. One is a Atlantic Cedar, Cedrus atlantica, in poor condition and senescent. The other is a Monkey Puzzle, Araucaria Araucana, also in poor condition, senescent and bifurcated. Below these trees are other traditional plantings including a very large Tecoma or Cape Honeysuckle, Tecomaria capensis.
The stables, coachhouse and barn are combined in an asymmetrical building with a single storey wing on the east side, incorporating the horse stalls and a tack room, and a two storey wing on the west accommodating the vehicles at the front and a barn at the rear with a loft above both. Its plan is T-shaped. A skillion extension at the rear is used to store hay. The floors are cobbled with bluestone pitchers and the stalls, timber-in-the round posts and the saddle rack survive. The walls are rough bluestone and are tied together at the upper level with iron rods and plates. Wide openings with concrete beam provide access to the barn on the west elevation. One of the four windows above has been bricked in. The most distinctive feature of the building is the pair of segmental arches with the large loft door above on the north elevation. A mounting block survives outside the stables. There is a Ferrier's No. 2 Wool Press numbered "625" in the barn.
The salthouse, for the curing of meat, is a simple bluestone building nearby. It is a rare example of such a function. It may have been associated with a slaughter house and butcher's room lost to fire.
The manager's residence is on the western side of the complex. It is an asymmetrical, single storey, bluestone house with a simple modern verandah. The house was either 'three quarters' originally or has been extended to the west. The roof has been remodelled with a modern, low pitched gable across the eastern section. It is still occupied by the manager and his family.
Nearby and close to the drive is the cemetery which contains several graves and memorials. They include the graves of John Marr, John Hutchinson Murray and Ian and Audrey Mann, all owners of Brie Brie, and of John Marr's infant daughter Rossie and William Patterson Gill a Scotsman who died in May 1874 aged 29 from injuries received in a fall from a horse. There are memorials to William and Harriet Murray, also owners of Brie Brie, who died in England. The graves are aligned to face east and are set within a square
The present homestead is in the dentre of the complex and on the south side in the highest position. It is symmetrical about the front door and wide hall and principally one storey. The walls are tuck-pointed brick at dado level and unpainted grey roughcast above. There is a wide verandah on three sides. The verandah is supported by massive piers, now covered with Boston Ivy or Virginia creeper, Parthenocissus quinquefolia. French doors open onto the verandah from the front rooms. A large single room, clad with timber shingles, juts out above the verandah over the entrance to form a distinctive attic. This is roofed with a shingled gable over a projecting window. The main roof is hipped and contiguous with the verandah roof. It is corrugated iron. The plan of the house is U-shaped with some asymmetry in the arrangement of the main rooms and extensive service wings on either side of the inner courtyard. Sectio*ns of the rear are later, probably 1930s, weatherboard infill within masonry porches. The attic section has high level clerestorey windows overlooking the courtyard. The style of the house falls within the American Bungalow idiom, more East Coast Craftsman than the typical West Coast or Californian type. Importantly, the house faces Mount William, the same orientation of each of the four homesteads built on the property and the manager's residence. The house is in very good condition and retains an excellent degree of integrity. At the rear of the house there is a large contemporary garage and other typical outbuildings.
BRIE BRIE HOMESTEAD COMPLEX - Historical Australian Themes
Theme 3: Developing local, regional and national economies
3.5 Developing primary production
3.5.1 Grazing stock
3.5.2 Breeding animals
3.5.3 Developing agricultural industries
Theme 5: Working
5.8 working on the land
BRIE BRIE HOMESTEAD COMPLEX - Usage/Former Usage
continuing as a pastoral property
BRIE BRIE HOMESTEAD COMPLEX - Integrity
Various degrees of integrity but generally high.
BRIE BRIE HOMESTEAD COMPLEX - Physical Description 2
John and Elizabeth Marr
Horace Flower and the Hutton Brothers
William Sanderson, John Murray, George Wilson, Walter Armstrong and John Sanderson as John Sanderson and Co.
John Sanderson and William and Harriet Murray
John Hutchinson Murray
Ian and Audrey Mann
Edward (Ted) and Jane Mann
BRIE BRIE HOMESTEAD COMPLEX - Physical Description 3
Burri Burri Pre-emptive Right, 640 acres to H Flower & J Hutton & Exers of J Marr, 30/4/60
Heritage Study and Grading
Southern Grampians - Southern Grampians Shire Heritage Study
Author: Timothy Hubbard P/L, Annabel Neylon
MAJOR MITCHELL MONUMENTSouthern Grampians Shire
BRIE BRIE HOMESTEAD COMPLEXSouthern Grampians Shire
"AMF Officers" ShedMoorabool Shire
"AQUA PROFONDA" SIGN, FITZROY POOLVictorian Heritage Register H1687