008 Mendip Exterior Edit v2
008 Mendip Exterior Edit v2

Mendip

HISTORY - and lots of it, not only with Mendip Hills Station but also with Gregg Builders and their long relationship with the Black family. This relationship started some 25 years ago building, renovating, and maintaining many of the farm buildings on Mendip Hills Station including the main Homestead. Although this all changed in 2016 when the 7.8 Kaikoura earthquake ripped through the valley causing widespread damage to many buildings on the station and irreparable damage to the old Homestead.

Project details

Architectural Build
Architect: Wilson & Hill Architects

The old Homestead was built in 1924 after Norman Rutherford took over following the deaths of his father and brother in WW1. This building was a replacement for the previous Homestead, which boasted its own manmade lake, after being destroyed by the 1901 6.9 Cheviot earthquake. The building was re-built using double-skin concrete walls with air gap, a common technique in this era.

Project details

The Homestead featured seven bedrooms, including 2 upstairs for the cook and maid, extra storerooms and laundry, 3 large living areas, front sitting room, large billiard room with decorated ceiling and dining room with full timber panelling and fireplaces (the timber panelling we believe came from Japan due to a stamp which was found on the back of one of the panels) pantry, parlour and kitchen complex which was renovated by the Blacks in '97'. The Homestead including garden, kitchen garden, lawns etc sat on approx. 2.5ha enjoying panoramic views of the farm and surrounding hills.

Project details

Following the 2016 earthquake Chris Wilson from Wilson and Hill Architects was engaged to design the new Homestead, with Gregg Builders entrusted to undertake the build to ensure that only the best was delivered to the Black Family.

The new 5-bedroom, 4-bathroom Homestead sits on the original site and really is a credit to all involved. The large front door leads you into the library foyer, which in turn leads you to the living area via 2 glass hinged doors. You can't help but be in awe of the view out over the lawn, ha-ha and beyond showcasing the rolling hills and mountains of the station and beyond.

Project details

The large kitchen, living and sitting room has high pitched ceilings. Exposed Oregon trusses built onsite by Gregg Builders with Macrocarpa T & G sarking makes this room feel grand and like a Homestead should, warm and inviting. A large Radiante 2-sided fire, with original timber mantels and panelling from the old homestead, separates the dining and sitting rooms whilst keeping everyone warm on both sides. Above the sitting room, sitting proud in the gable end is a lead light window from the original homestead.

Project details

The large entrance foyer which doubles up as the Homesteads library boasts literally 100s of books all arranged in order on the joinery shelves. At the end of the hall is a guest powder room, large office and large billiard room which really is a jewel in the crown. The timber wall panelling, all saved from the original Homestead lines the walls of the billiard room, Alex from GB took on the task of reinstating and did a wonderful job. The large billiard table saved from the earthquake finishes this room perfectly. Off the end of the billiard room, through a pair of surface sliders also saved from the old homestead is a sitting room.

At the opposite end of the house, downstairs, is the master suite. A large bedroom with amazing views, walk in robe and ensuite which is accessed via 2 large cedar arch doors. The bath was also saved from the original Homestead and after been re-surfaced sits proudly in the bathroom.

Laundry, mudroom and 1 other bedroom with ensuite finishes off downstairs.

Project details

Upstairs has 3 more bedrooms, one being a bunk bed for the grandkids and a family bathroom. A small chapel with original timber wall panelling is a special room upstairs for the family, finished off beautifully with a stained glass window from the chapel at the owner's house in Garden Road, Christchurch, which was also damaged by the Christchurch earthquakes.

Everywhere you turn in this house reminds you of the past and the present. So much care was taken to ensure the history was not lost in the re-build of this Homestead - as soon as you 'turn the first door handle' you are reminded of the history of Mendip Hills.

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