Manors on the Mary: Ilfracombe

A new era for Ilfracombe

A curtain has drawn on the Hyne family’s ownership of Ilfracombe, one of the most prestigious historic riverside homes in Maryborough.

After almost 80 years in the Hyne family, the chamfer board timber home now has a new owner.

James Hyne, resource manager at Hyne Timber, recalled the many days he spent on the bull-nosed verandas chatting with family and friends or quietly contemplating the world as the muddy waters of the Mary River flowed past.

“My grandfather Lambert left the home to Dad and it became the family home about 1985,” James said.  “The most memorable day for me at Ilfracombe was the day I married Jodie on the front lawn.”

Beautifully positioned to host weddings, James’ uncle Chris Hyne and his wife Carol also chose Ilfracombe as their wedding venue.

They were married in the drawing-room where the original anaglypta-lined vaulted ceiling still exists.

Over the years, Ilfracombe’s sweeping garden with its many large established trees has been the scene of many functions, the last of which was a garden party in May for this year’s Biggest Morning Tea in support of the cancer research.

Sadly, James’ mother Margaret succumbed to cancer just three months after his wedding in 2000. His father Warren died seven years later.

Manors on Mary: Ilfracombe 2021

Manors on Mary: Ilfracombe, 2021.

James said it was also sad the home was destined to be sold and would no longer be in the Hyne family.

“There are just a few minor renovations to be done and it’ll be ready for sale,” he said.

Over the years, rear sections of the home have been removed and replaced, and the kitchen extended.  Despite many internal renovations, many original features remain intact including the drawing-room ceiling and a fireplace with painted tiles.

James is the son of Warren and Margaret Hyne and great-great-grandson of Richard Matthews Hyne who established the iconic timber milling business in 1882.

Ilfracombe history

Concealed from street views, the state-heritage-listed manor Ilfracombe overlooks the Mary River close to the heart of Maryborough.

Originally named Blairholme, the chamfer board timber home with corrugated iron gabled roof, which includes an attic, decorative finishes and large garden, is characteristic of the large timber homes built in Queensland in the late 19th century.

The historic river-side home is associated with prominent Maryborough families, the Wilsons and the Hynes.

Queensland Heritage Register archives show Ilfracombe was built between 1893 and 1895 as the residence of Margaret Blair and her four children following the death of her husband in 1893. Margaret was the sister-in-law of Andrew Heron Wilson on whose land the house was built, adjacent to his home, Doon Villa.

Mr Wilson arrived in Maryborough about 1866 and established Maryborough Sawmills before teaming with R. Hart and J. Bartholomew to build a larger sawmill for Wilson, Hart and Co. in 1881, where the Brolga Theatre now stands.

After Mr Wilson’s death in 1906, the land was transferred to the Queensland Trustees Limited but the Blair family stayed in the home until 1935 when the allotments were subdivided and sold.

Hugh Keys bought the land on which Ilfracombe stood and two years later the property was transferred to James Richard Lambert Hyne, a member of another prominent Maryborough timber milling family.

J.R.L. (Lambert) Hyne was the grandson of Richard Matthews Hyne, an English carpenter who founded the Hyne dynasty on the banks of the Mary River in 1882.

The Hyne family had a family home in Lennox Street called Ilfracombe and when they bought Blairholme the name was transferred from this earlier residence.

On the death of J.R.L. (Lambert) Hyne, the property was transferred to his son Warren Henry Hyne who lived in the home with his wife Margaret (pictured below) from about 1985 until their deaths in 2007 and 2000 respectively.

Originally published in the Fraser Coast Chronicle, June 18, 2011.

If you enjoyed this story, perhaps you’d like to read about Woodstock

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *