Edith – 26 Stokes St
Permanent heritage controls for 26 Stokes St through Amendment C132 were gazetted on 28 September 2017.
A Planning Panel has supported the heritage significance of 26 Stokes St even though “there were robust and well‐argued reasons presented to the Panel for why the Heritage Overlay should, and should not, be applied to 26 Stokes Street. This made the Panel’s task more difficult.”
The Panel found there was sufficient justification for the house to have an individual Heritage Overlay (HO 497), and its own citation (No 2382). The Council accepted their recommendation and will now ask the Minister for Planning to extend the interim heritage protection for the property and apply permanent heritage controls to ensure heritage matters are considered in any future planning application. See the Council report for 21 June 2017.
The Society was notified on 15 December that the applicant has withdrawn the planning application for 26 Stokes St.
That means the VCAT appeal will not proceed either.
That is the end of this particular application. Any new proposal would require an application for a fresh new permit.
An application to demolish the house at 26 Stokes St to build a four storey dwelling with basement carparking and a roof deck was made to the City of Port Phillip on the 16th November 2015.
Neighbours (and the PMHPS), were shocked to discover that the house did not have the protection that an observer might have assumed it would have, especially since the house sits in a street of heritage protected buildings and faces a streetscape of heritage buildings.
Next door is protected. Why not 26?
The application is now being appealed to VCAT where it will be heard on 1 and 2 February. (ref P1486/2016)
It emerged that the house was described as a ‘contributory’ rather than as a ‘significant’ heritage place in the Port Phillip Planning Scheme – on these two words hanging the difference between likely demolition and retention of the house.
In considering the planning application, the City of Port Phillip undertook further examination of the heritage values of the house, and determined that it was indeed significant, and wrote to the Minister for Planning requesting that an heritage overlay be applied to the site.
The following information is taken from the citation prepared for the house:
” ‘Edith’, the house at 26 Stokes Street was built in 1891 for George and Elizabeth Briggs.
Elizabeth Briggs was the wife of George Walter Briggs, a tailor, who had a shop in O’Brien’s Terrace in Bay Street, Port Melbourne. The Briggs family resided in the house until about 1913. It was then tenanted until 1920 when it was sold to Francis J. Young, a Warrant Officer in the Royal Australian Navy. He lived in the house briefly before selling it to Rose Mitchell in 1922. The Mitchell family then occupied the house for over 50 years.
It is a late Victorian Italianate villa constructed of bi-chrome brick, which is asymmetrical in plan and has a hipped roof clad in slate. The verandah retains the original cast iron post and frieze, and tiled floor with bluestone edging, and has an end wall with a vermiculated corbel and scroll bracket (the south boundary wall has the same details).
There is a four panel entrance door with sidelights and toplights and the windows to the main elevation are in a tri-partite arrangement: the central window contains a double hung timber sash and the narrower flanking windows have sash windows containing etched ruby glass; all have window reveals with an ovolo profile terminating in a stop chamfer, and the window to the projecting bay has what appears to be an early timber window shade hood (these sometimes contained rolled up canvas blinds) with a serrated edge. There are eaves brackets with a moulded cement string course below. The bi-chrome brick chimneys have moulded cement details and a cornice, and terracotta pots.”
Source: City of Port Phillip Heritage Review citation 2382