AROUND THE BLOCK: Renovated station a unique find

A former police station at 25 Albert Street, Wickham, is attracting plenty of pre-auction interest.THE former Wickham Police Station was viewed by 25 parties at its first showing, ahead of its upcoming auction.

Agent and auctioneer Anthony Merlo, of Dalton Partners, said the commanding cavity-brick and tile property on a double-size, 466-square-metre block had piqued the interest of younger buyers, as well as older baby boomers wanting a villa-style alternative to mainstream offerings.

“The original Wickham Police Station is believed to be over 120 years old,” Mr Merlo said.

“It used to house the local sergeant in charge and have a number of holding cells used as the local lock up for out-of-control ruffians and the drunk and disorderly.”

The unique property has since been tastefully renovated and features a large central hallway, three generous-size bedrooms, separate lounge and dining, north-facing sunroom, renovated traditional bathroom, Caesarstone kitchen, and laundry with floor-to-ceiling cupboards.

It also has high ceilings, hardwood floors, a combustion fireplace and two split-system airconditioners.

But, said Mr Merlo, the “jewel in the crown” is the backyard, which features a private Balinese style in-ground pool enclosure, covered alfresco area, child-safe fenced courtyard, bamboo, fountains and lighting, all surrounded by a two-metre charcoal block boundary wall.

Owner Martin Jeffery built the pool after buying the 25 Albert Street property on the spur of the moment in 2006 for $445,000.

Mr Jeffery also added the freestanding garage with its remote control door, drop ladder to a loft and plumbing to accommodate a second bathroom, a home office or studio accommodation.

Mr Jeffery works mostly out of the area as a specialist in the mining industry and no longer needs the property, which is close to the harbour and the proposed transport interchange.

Mr Merlo said he expected bidding would start at around $650,000 at the on-site auction, which will be held at 10.30am on August 8.

The property is open for inspection today from 10.30am to 11.15am or by appointment.

Terrace has best of two worlds

41 Corlette Street, Cooks Hill, combines traditional and modern.

A RECENTLY renovated Cooks Hill terrace combining turn-of-the century character with striking modern features and two courtyards will go under the hammer this month.

Agents Mark Kentwell and Russell Dawson, of PRD Nationwide Newcastle, have listed the two-bedroom, circa-1900 property at 41 Corlette Street for a friendly auction on August 12, with a price guide of more than $570,000.

Patrick Allen bought the property in 2003 after being drawn to its unique charm and location within walking distance of Darby Street, the beach, shops and public transport.

Mr Allen’s wife Erinne moved in more than five years ago and the couple consulted an interior designer before embarking on an extensive three-year renovation.

This included a new Caesarstone kitchen, laundry, ceilings, walls and skirtings; new paint inside and outside; the installation of heritage railings; new carpet upstairs; a custom-designed built-in wardrobe in the master bedroom and a pull-down staircase to the attic, which provides versatile and most handy floored loft space.

The terrace also features a multi-purpose lounge and dining area, two fireplaces, polished timber floorboards, study nook, ornate ceiling roses, two courtyards, a family bathroom upstairs and a laundry cum powder room downstairs.

“The house is very comfortable,” Mr Allen said.

“We love the way the layout flows, it makes it great for entertaining.”

The couple are upsizing to a nearby Cooks Hill property in preparation for the birth of their first child.

The property will be auctioned at 6pm on August 12 at the Watt Street Commercial Centre.

Sale breaks suburb record

62 Fishing Point Road, Fishing Point, set a new suburb record.

A LANDMARK Fishing Point residence has sold for more than $1 million at auction, setting an off-the-water record for the suburb.

Mark Campbell, of LJ Hooker Warners Bay, sold Maurice and Jane Sinclair’s country-style homestead at 62 Fishing Point Road for $1.075 million on July 9.

The single-storey house on 2205 square metres with 40 metres of road frontage has sweeping 200-degree, north-east lake views, five double bedrooms, an office and a designer kitchen.

It also has a large double garage with extra storage and workshop, a full-width bullnose verandah, landscaped lawns and gardens and an in-ground swimming pool.

Breathe easy in East Maitland

161 Brunswick Street, East Maitland, is a great entertainer.

THE owners of Rutherford’s Aussie Shade and Hot Houses relish hosting guests at their private East Maitland oasis, but the time has come to hand the property to the next generation of entertainers.

Louella and Graeme were living elsewhere in the suburb when they bought the secluded 4000-square metre block at 161 Brunswick Street about a decade ago.

“You walk down the driveway and feel like you’re in the bush when you’re only a few minutes’ walk from Greenhills,” Louella said.

“You don’t see the houses around you, you don’t hear any road noise and you can sit out the back and look out at the birds in the treetops. It’s a very private spot.”

The couple built their “inviting” McDonald Jones home about six years ago to include ample storage, five bedrooms, home office, several living areas, a large rear timber deck, open-plan kitchen and built-in speakers for the informal living and theatre rooms. It has ducted airconditioning, a walk-in linen press, three-metre ceilings, downlights, landscaped gardens with mature native and fruit trees, hot house, fernery and a garage with a workshop area.

“We just wanted to have a very easy lifestyle,” Louella said.

“Every time I go home I just feel so good and relaxed, that’s what we were looking for. You can breathe easy – it’s a tranquil retreat, somewhere you want to go and want to be.”

The couple plan to move to Palm Lake Resort at Fern Bay and spend more time with their family.

Rhonda Nyquist and Stacey Pethers, of PRD Nationwide Hunter Valley, have listed the property for $985,000.

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