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Craig Pontey’s Blog – RWDB appointed to sell Bishopscourt

By Craig Pontey

Ray White Double Bay appointed to sell “Bishopscourt”

September 2, 2013 by Craig Pontey

I am very please to confirm that The Anglican Church has appointed Ray White Double Bay to sell Bishopscourt, 11 Greenoaks Avenue, Darling Point one of Sydney’s historic mansions.  Bishopscourt has been occupied by the Anglican Archbishop of Sydney since it was bought by the church in the early 20th century.

The sale of the iconic 1840s Darling Point property is expected to attract enormous local and international attention particularly given the strength of top end Sydney Eastern Suburbs residential property that has been setting new records over 2013. Industry sources have suggested a possible sale at $25,000,000.

Bishopscourt is set on 6,216 square metres and is surrounded by elaborate gardens. Not since the sale of ‘Swifts’, also in Darling Point, has a similar property been brought to market.

Given the nature of the property, Ray White Double Bay will promote the Bishopscourt sale via its international network covering South East Asia, Indonesia, China, India, Abu Dhabi, Seoul, Hong Kong and New Zealand.

” It is in an extremely attractive location and when you combine this with the character of the building and the beautiful gardens, this is a unique offering. ” Brian White Chairman of Ray White said.

When fully restored, Bishopscourt would undoubtedly sit with only a handful of similar properties any where in Australia.

I firmly beleive that Bishopscourt is beyond any current comparable offering in the Sydney or Eastern Suburbs markets.

The exclusive and very high-end residential market remains exceptionally strong as demonstrated by the sale of “Altona” for $54 million earlier this year.

For Bishopscourt we expect demand to come from a number of owner/occupiers keen to buy in the local area and motivated by what will be emotional factors, including an astute understanding of the historic and iconic nature of the home, its remarkable history and extensive gardens.

I alos think that this group would include those buyers looking to make a statement while creating a legacy for their children and grand children.

I am delighted with the appointment and I do recognized it will be imperative for the sale to be leveraged to produce the best possible outcome for the Church and the community.

Expressions of interest will close at 4pm on Thursday, 31/10/2013.

Bishopscourt – A Brief History

Bishopscourt has been occupied by the Anglican Archbishop of Sydney since 1910. In the 1840s it was a grand gentlemen’s residence alongside earlier mansions on Darling Point.

Originally built in 1841 the property was purchased by businessman, Thomas Sutcliffe Mort in 1846 for 2,500 pounds.  Mort was a pioneer of weekly wool auctions and the refrigeration of food. He was also one of the founders of the AMP Society.

Mort, along with architect J.F. Hilly, transformed the home into a gentleman’s residence in 1846 and named it “Greenoaks”. Later additions were made by renowned Australian architect, Edmund Blacket in 1859 and subsequently, in 1935, by Professor Leslie Wilkinson.

Among Darling Point mansions, “Greenoaks” was a visible landmark on the Darling Point hill.  The home was one of the most palatial residences of early Sydney and incorporated one of the finest landscaped gardens in Sydney – designed by the well known landscape designer Michael Guilfoyle whose nursery adjoined “Greenoaks.”  The garden’s core, along with some of the original plants, still remains today.

Mort had his own gallery in the home that displayed 200 works of art, suits of English armour and war weapons collected on a trip to England in 1857-1859.

In 1892, the estate was sold to grazier Michael Campbell Langtree. Langtree subdivided it and sold part of “Greenoaks” to the Church of England in 1910 for 6,750 pounds.

Prior to the sale, the house had been rented out to several tenants, including Major-General Hutton. The subsequent construction of Greenoaks Avenue led to a further subdivision of the property. The house is currently on a 6,216 square metre block of land.

The house is listed on the Register of the National Estate and is also listed under the NSW Heritage Act. Church authorities have contemplated the sale of Bishopscourt several times since the 1960s and in 2012, the Anglican Synod gave approval for a sale.

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