Derham Groves

Early A.W. Purnell-Designed House For Sale

One of the first houses—if not the first house—designed by Arthur William Purnell is currently for sale for just under $AUS1,000,000. ‘Tarina’ in Newcombe Street, Portalington, was designed and constructed by Purnell & Sons, Arthur’s father’s firm, for Mr. P.M. Browne, in 1896. Arthur began working for Purnell & Sons only the year before. The Bellarine Herald praised the house’s ‘very wide verandah, with its deep roof in Queensland style, which must so greatly add to the comfort of the inmates during the worst days of our too intense summer’. Because ‘Tarina’ was so unlike any of Purnell & Sons’ previous houses, it may very well have been designed by the firm’s ‘new blood’—Arthur. Following are images of the house in 1896 (top) and today:

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