The last Christmas mail included our ‘membership card‘ of the THEATRE OF THE ACTORS OF REGARD via Peter Tyndall, nice! With christmas day and boxing day lunches over but still charged with cheer we cleaned and packed. Great journey down the Newell Highway to Melbourne where we caught up with designers & jewellers; Andrew, Justine & new baby Freya before heading to the boat – 1.5 m day time Bass Straight crossing then drove to Ray & Pat’s for late dinner and stop over. Claire (miss pink) Burnett and parents and locals, missed Marg and Steve Jones . . . + + + I’ve prepared 53 images filed (under tassie trip 22) – have lots to report but its Friday night! Some posts to FB and tumblr done on iPhone on the hop through Jan&Feb.
So pleased to say Hi to everyone . . .
Following day, I’ve been requested to complete the diary – the two big jobs this break were to finish the electrics and finish the paint removal from all the stone. The peel-away and water blasting was completed and our friend and stone mason Graton Whitney followed up and chipped out the mortar and freshly repointed all the stone to the front and back of the building. Needless to say, locals came up and volunteered info and names to match some of the initials. The shot below records the process at the half way mark.
Josh Nunn from Hobart completed all the electrics I started eight years ago with Peter Webster who has since retired. A few overhead hanging lamps but mostly points around the rooms at skirting board level + the smoke alarms that are now obligatory. Barbara is chuffed to have table lamps and lights at the front and back of the dwelling also.
Our close friends Alan and Linda Cooper who live between Ipswich and Woodbury sold one of their properties in Ipswich which meant they air-travelled back to sell and pack furniture and belongings. Breaking his beautiful restoration work at Woodbury for a couple of weeks – here is a pic of the cedar and blackwood work he is finishing in the first story ‘servants’ quarters at Woodbury. Alan built our replacement internal staircase at Tunbridge and has mentored us throughout our restoration. Dot and Mike Evans own the other two story building in town and had drinks for us to meet the new professional people who bought Kim & Joy’s house at 113 Main Road; Nova and Brian Miller who turned out to be web and marketing folk from the NSW southern highlands. Never a dull moment in southern midlands paradise . . . after the professors who live across the road in the Highland Shop alerted us to the radiation issue with Tasmania fracking happening on our door step. Aleah and Lawrence Poncini are scientists who run the Didel Institute and have the measured approach and have uncovered scandulous truths, we support and love the work they are involved in . . .
Only two trips to Hobart and both around dining pleasure. The first with Warwick Oakman inviting us to dinner with Les Lauder and Mark Howard who are also doing a Georgian refurbishment. I’ve done an earlier post on our visit to their house and garden – ‘Heathfield’ but I do want to show just one detail of their kitchen – they have installed a splash back with 18th & 19th century delft tiles that was truly eye candy. Lunch at ‘Frank’ planning Barbara’s next show with Allanah Dopson from Handmark Gallery was the other swish affair for this visit. Barbara’s next show is around the end of June 2015 with the UK painter – John Lendis. Warwick sold us a very early farm strap gate and up at Willow Court we bagged a smaller gate and estate posts which we will be reproducing for our Tunbridge property. Popped into ‘Flywheel’ – the stationery and letterpress store we have always missed previously and enjoyed that immensely.
Back home cleaning and we also managed to book a local with an excavator who removed the box thorn hedge to the south of the property – it took less that an hour to drag it all out by the roots and take away in the tip truck. Next our first touring trip to Roz MacAllan and John Potter’s food & art compound at Binnalong Bay where we all tested their new wood-fired oven and had Yotam’s Apricot, Wallnut and Lavender cake we made for desert. Steve Taylor from Avoca asked us to drop in on the way home and we scored plums, rhubarb and some brassware from his garage. Another long look through the spoils at Quail Street antiques owned by Jane who has also added ‘the lifeboat cafe’ to her growing concern. Concentrated kitchen activities with sauces, pastes, jams and more recipes from Yotam’s third cookbook using fruits from the garden. Friendly drop-ins for lunch and cuppas; we caught up with Steve and Marg, Alan & Lilly Rielly (our Brisbane neighbours), Richard Allom & Desley Campbell-Stewart, Rob & Lynne + their Mackay friends, Grahame, Anne and David Hesse with Laura Patterson. Paul Jones & Babe and an old potter friend (now blues musician) Phil McConnel & his wife Barbara who I haven’t seen for nearly 35 years.
Visited Richmond, I broke a early ‘paddle pop’ glass dome I purchased from Walter @ Co in the shop while packing it – that totally floored me then I went across the road and found an early colonial carved frame in fiddleback blackwood that cost me nothing . . . thats life . . . we also dropped in to see the Walkers at their lovely shop, I talked to Ben a little later on the phone searching for Baltic boards. Visited Longford to collect a lay-buy and managed a great catch-up with Michael McWilliams who has four William Morris & Co chairs we would love to have in Tunbridge. Barbara’s sleeping relatives in the graveyard close by were in an earlier FB post. Two more jugs for the collection from Peter Lane in Hobart and Tim Willis in Perth. A visit to Sallie & Graham Mulligan from Clockwise in Launceston for my annual clock hit. Fragments in Hobart for old fashioned electrical flex and lighting.
Next we started the search for 6″ antique Baltic pine to strip and prepare lengths for the ceiling and the back of staircase. Newly arrived locals came through with some (thanks Kevin & Raymond), up to see Brian Singline’s own urban archaeology pieces at Andy’s Salvage in Launceston where Andy let me have some of his own stash and some from my own collecting. I spent two weeks with heat gun sandpaper scraper stripper and fine sandpaper and finally meth to complete these boards. The locals have changed my nickname from ‘baldy’ to ‘scraper’ apparently . . .
Barbara concentrated on the garden next door, with mulch straw and watering + additional irrigation, transplanting and new plants to compliment her vision. Meeting with Patrick & Danielle who do the mowing etc when we are in Queensland for winter pruning and watering strategies has been fun.
A long drive to the top end and west to Wynyard and Fossil Bluff was planned after we saw Dr Gael Phillip’s childhood collection from the beach. The headland is a geological delight but we were only allowed to collect from the beach now as then. Onto an overnight stay in Stanley where we loved the gardens, architecture, history and the Cape Grimm homestead. Jan Crossland has a small and well stocked collectables shop there also. I managed to see fellow Queenslander – ‘Odd Job Bob’ who lives with Glenda the post mistress of Stanley. Do include Stanley in your future Tassie touring . . .
My daughter Lil had her 36th birthday earlier in Feb and we had to wait to see her until she visited Hobart to see Emma & Ray, she collected her beau; Craig and did Mona and came up in time for the end of the SpeedShear at the Tunbridge Community Club and stayed for the night. The first time the points in the upstairs bathroom had been used . . .
Final people to see and connect with – George Burrows at the Black Snake Inn for a brief with mal E to do pennant and flag designs he wants to produce. Arts administrator and fellow artist and ‘Pataphyscian’ – Noel Frankham at his home at Dulcot. We stayed at Matthew’s beach and jetty house at Saratoga on the way home to catch Jean Pierre Khoury and to break our journey home.