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Architect Rodney Howard Alsop, (1881–1932)


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Edrington (1907)
Glyn, Toorak (1908)
3 Mernda Road Toorak (1915)
Tongaboo (1915)
Watson House (1915)
13 Whernside AvenueToorak (1926)
6 Church StreetToorak (1927)

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Rodney Alsop

Alsop was a founding member of the Arts and Crafts Society of Victoria and played a major role in the introduction of this style into Australia in the early 1900s. Alsop was one of Arts and Crafts movement’s best practitioners.
  • In Victoria, the best known and most important examples of Old English influence on house design in the first two decades of this century were the houses of Harold Desbrowe Annear and of Rodney Alsop.
  • Alsop‘s work in this period drew heavily on the English vernacular revival and its medieval sources.
  • His earliest work, demonstrated by buildings such as Glyn and Edrington, was firmly founded in contemporary English domestic and vernacular revivalism, a theme which the practice maintained through the 1910s albeit with a growing acknowledgement of American bungalow idioms... in part an attempt to develop an expression which, while derivative of British traditions, was suited to Australian conditions.[1]

Born in Kew, Victoria, on 22 December 1881, Rodney Howard Alsop was articled to the architectural firm Hyndman and Bates around 1900. He built his first house in 1903 and was admitted to the Royal Victorian Institute of Architects in 1906. Subsequently he designed and built several large houses for which he also designed some of the fittings. A founder member of the Arts and Crafts Society of Victoria in 1908, he also exhibited decorative arts designed by him at the Society’s first exhibition, which was in the same year. Over the next fifteen years he continued his career of architect.
The T-square club of Melbourne, who established an Arts and Crafts agenda of collaborative work and building crafts
The T-square club of Melbourne, who established an Arts and Crafts agenda of collaborative work and building crafts

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Table of Contents

Rodney Howard Alsop (1881-1932), architect, was born on 22 December 1881 at Kew, Melbourne, eighth and youngest child of John Alsop, actuary and trustee-manager to the State Savings Bank of Victoria, and his wife Anne, née Howard. He early showed great gifts in both drawing and model-making, skills encouraged by his poor health which kept him in passive convalescence; when he was 15 his realistic panorama of the siege of Delhi was put on public display.
  • While still a pupil at Cumloden, St Kilda, he worked on Saturday mornings for the architects Hyndman and Bates.
  • After an operation in 1899 to ease his asthma, he went with his family on a tour of Europe which embraced English church and domestic architecture, the Paris Exposition (1900) and Italian art centres.
On his return to Melbourne in 1901 he was articled with Hyndman and Bates and in 1906, after admission to the Royal Victorian Institute of Architects, he entered partnership with F. L. Klingender; Alsop was reputedly the designer, and Klingender the practical partner.
  • In 1921 he joined Kingsley Henderson and Marcus Martin in a practice that created the distinctive Temperance and General Mutual Life offices in several State capitals. Alsop is credited with the notion that these buildings should have a tower of similar character and all be the same colour. From September 1924 until 1931, when he joined A. Bramwell Smith, he practised alone.
Glyn, 224 Kooyong Road Toorak
Glyn, 224 Kooyong Road Toorak

In all the partnerships, Alsop is acknowledged as a design architect and a sensitive specialist in domestic work.
Winthrop Hall UWA
Winthrop Hall UWA

  • His crowning achievement was the Winthrop Hall in the Hackett buildings at the University of Western Australia; his designs for them had won first place in the 1926 world-wide competition which he had entered with C. H. Sayce. The commission led to a legal dispute between Sayce and Alsop, from which the former withdrew.

Architectural Styles

Before World War I Alsop's distinctive house designs were dominated by gables in the English domestic manner, but afterwards he turned towards an arcaded Italian Renaissance mode.
Rodney Alsop had risen to prominence in the first decade of the century as the designing partner of Kiingender & Alsop, with major houses such as Edrington, Berwick (1908), and Glyn, Malvern (1908) to his credit;
  • His buildings throughout this early period show a clear relationship to the work of English architects such as Voysey and Lethaby, while the interiors were often furnished with articles designed or made by Alsop, himself an Arts and Crafts enthusiast. A number of Alsop’s houses from the next decade, however, show a clear debt to the Craftsman type.
  • 12 Uvadale Grove, Kew (1915) (demolished), was until recently probably the earliest surviving and most intact examples of the Craftsman type in Melbourne.
    Typical of its style in all details, it was an attic villa with gable roof over a rectangular plan. Eaves overhung to form front and rear verandahs, a flat eaved dormer gave light to the attic, and the weatherboard walls were stained and oiled rather than painted. The overall design was very similar to a bungalow illustrated in Prevost’s Australian Bungalow and Cottage Designs (1912).
  • Leighwood, 222 Mountjoy Parade, Lorne (1916), was another Alsop holiday house designed in this single ridged Craftsman manner.
  • The Croft, 6 Stonnington Place, Malvern (1913) (demolished), reflected the cross ridged type of Oakden & Ballantyne’s Illabarook but, with its juxtaposition of tall roof and dormer and timber balcony rather than verandah, was intermediate between the picturesque, English styling of Edrington or Glyn and the Craftsman bungalow idiom of 12 Uvadale Grove or Leighwood.
  • **Crumpford, 2 Stonnington Place, Malvern (1916**), a single ridged attic villa with a short verandah supported on stone piers, clinker brick walls and corbelled chimneys, represents a clear statement of English picturesque cottage design, and it is clear that Alsop, like many of his contemporaries, was moving rather freely between the English and American idioms in this period.
  • Like his friend Professor Leslie Wilkinson he endeavoured to develop an appropriate Australian style by expressing the planning requirements of a building in terms of the architecture of southern Europe.
    UWA aerial view
    UWA aerial view
  • Alsop was also a respected designer of furniture and shared a skill in landscape design with his wife Dorothy Hope, daughter of Sir Nicholas Lockyer, whom he had married in June 1912 at Toorak; their only child died in 1915.

Fig. 7.10 Alsop & Sayce (architects), University of Western Australia campus aerial view, Court of Honour, Perth, Australia, 1935. University of Western Australia Archives. Courtesy of West Australian Newspapers Ltd.
Tall and slight, of ready wit and fine features, Alsop was described as 'a true Edwardian gentleman, a man of impeccable manners, and thoroughly good company'.
  • He was admired for his use of simple and unusual materials to create interesting and delightful effects, and his designs often drew together various artists and craftsmen as contributors to the architecture, which to Alsop was always an art.
  • While his designs may be seen as distinctive and original in their combination of the two idioms, they nonetheless reflect an eclecticism which was also the hallmark of the Craftsman and other bungalow publications, which frequently placed works in the American and English bungalow idioms alongside one another.
  • The same eclecticism is shown in a design published in 1917 which juxtaposed the simple overall form of the single ridged type with a large balcony typical of the Sydney balcony style and an entry gable with arched opening and chimney in the picturesque English cottage manner of Voysey or Baillie Scott.
  • Klingender & Alsop dissolved their partnership in 1920 as a result of Alsop’s ill health, and Klingender formed a new partnership with R B Hamilton.
  • Alsop went on to become a partner of Alsop & Martin (c.1920-21) and A & K Henderson, Alsop & Martin (1921-24), in which period he was responsible for the design for the T & G Building, Collins Street, Melbourne.
  • After a term abroad he returned to specialise in domestic design with a clear Mediterranean influence, as seen in his own house, Winster, Tintern Ave, Toorak (1925). The same influence was evident in the winning design produced by Alsop and Conrad Sayce in the international competition for the Winthrop Hall in' the Hackett Buildings at the University of Western Australia (1926). From 1931 until his death in 1932 he was in partnership with his former pupil, A Bramwell Smith.

Practice History

  • Klingender & Alsop (1906-1920)
  • Alsop & Martin (c.1920-21)
  • A & K Henderson, Alsop & Martin (1921-24)
  • Rodney Alsop & Bramwell Smith (1931-33)

Later years

In his mature years, he was a fellow of the Royal Victorian Institute of Architects and a councillor.
  • He was an active member of its board of architectural education and the first director of the University of Melbourne's architectural atelier.
  • On one of his five trips to Europe he represented the institute at the 1925 International Congress of Architects at Budapest.
  • A number of his papers, including one on the importance of travel to the development of an architect, are published in the institute's Journal.
Alsop died suddenly of bronchitis and asthma on 26 October 1932; he had just been awarded the 1932 bronze medal by the Royal Institute of British Architects for his Winthrop Hall—a singular honour. Survived by his wife, he was buried in Brighton cemetery.[2]

Early Heritage-listed Arts and Crafts Work



1. Edrington 132 High St. Berwick, VIC (1906-7)

A large main Art Nouveau residence architect designed with large garden and mature trees. Original house 1858 vintage in good order. Stone faced shed of considerable age, stone from the property. Beautiful surrounding landscape. High position and sufficient area for protection. Main house built in 1906-07.

  • Between 1934-1983 Edrington was the home of Lady Maie Casey, an amateur painter, who as the wife of the Governor-General did much to support the arts both in Australia and overseas.
EDRINGTON SOHE 2008
EDRINGTON SOHE 2008

1 edrington berwick front view of house apr1985
1 edrington berwick front view of house apr1985

EDRINGTON SOHE 4 2008
EDRINGTON SOHE 4 2008

edrington berwick brick arch of house apr1985
edrington berwick brick arch of house apr1985

An early brick cottage and stone barn on the Edrington site may date from the Gardiner ownership in the 1850s and 1860s. The symmetrical house is surrounded by a verandah supported on thick timber posts.
  • A very early example of Art Nouveau and of the work of Rodney Alsop, architect for many prominent buildings including Hackett Memorial Buildings of University of Western Australia.
  • The home of Sam McKay and then Andrew Spence Chirnside and then of Lord and Lady Casey and Lady Casey's brother Colonel Rupert Ryan, MHR.

Edrington, an important Arts and Crafts Bungalow mansion, has State significance as a prime example of the innovative designs of the architectural practice of Klingender and Alsop.
  • The 1906 design is one of the earliest examples of the Vernacular Revival style which was to become popular for suburban residences over the next twenty years.
  • Internally, features of the entrance foyer, bathroom and old kitchen are intact and are good examples of the period. The garden, also believed to date from c 1906, provides an authentic setting.
  • The property has historical significance for its associations with the early pastoral history of Colonial Victoria. Its first owner, the squatter Robert Gardiner, was the earliest and most important run holder within Berwick City Boundaries.
  • The remaining brick cottage and stone barn, built in the 1860s or earlier, dates from the Gardiner ownership.
  • Other notable owners included the pastoralist Samuel McKay, who commissioned the construction of the 1906 homestead (then known as Melville Park); the grazier Andrew S Chirnside, who renamed the property; and, more recently, Lord and Lady Casey. The Caseys were both distinguished Australians. Lord Casey earned distinction in the fields of government, diplomacy and administration, while his wife Lady Casey was a well known author, artist and aviator.

Several plantings are significant, including a specimen of CEDRUS DEODARA (deodar cedar) and ARANIUCARIA BIDWILLII (Bunya Bunya pine), of State and regional significance respectively, plus several trees which are considered to be of local aesthetic, scientific and historic significance. More recently the property has regional architectural significance because of the extensive renovations carried out.


2. Glyn, 224 Kooyong Road, Toorak (1908)

A grand Edwardian mansion completed in 1908 for Edward Miller. Built on the site of Miller’s earlier home in Kooyong Road, ‘Glyn’ features leadlight windows, repousse metal door furniture and carved woodwork all in a eucalypt theme, beaten metal light fittings and wrought iron gates.
Glyn is Nationally Significant 20th-Century Architecture by the practice Klingender & Alsop (Rodney Alsop) Designed 1908
Glyn (Heritage Listed Location)
Glyn (Heritage Listed Location)

Glyn was designed for the wealthy financier, pastoralist and politician Sir Edward Miller (1848-1932).
  • The house was constructed in the Arts and Crafts idiom, with reinforced concrete walls, finished with a distinctive render with white quartz pebbles pushed into the surface, resting on a deep brick plinth.
  • This render finish has subsequently been painted over. It was complemented by gables and steeply sloping roof slopes with all surfaces clad in terracotta shingles.
  • The interior contains many distinctive features, particularly timber panelling, carved woodwork, stained glass and beaten metal ornamentation.
  • The building was positioned at the top of a hill on a succession of terraces and towered above the extensive grounds as they sloped down to a gully on the south east side.

Glyn exhibits all the classic aspects of the Arts & Crafts movement emphasising picturesque massing, references to vernacular architecture and the exposure of building materials and textures.
Glyn, Entrance Hall 4.jpg
Glyn, Entrance Hall 4.jpg
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Glyn, Upper Hall 3.jpg

As a committed Arts and Crafts practitioner, Alsop designed all aspects of Glyn’s decorate treatment, including built-in furniture, carved woodwork, stained glass, and beaten metal ornamentation.
Alsop envisaged his houses as all-encompassing designs and works of art, and Glyn is a fine instance of this philosophy.

  • The original fireplaces, light fittings, switch plates and joinery were rare examples of English Arts and Crafts influence in Australia, although some of these features have since been lost.
  • Each room has a different decorative treatment. An interesting Australian touch is the eucalypt decorative scheme in the main hall, stair hall, entrance hall and upstairs gallery.
Glyn is also important early example of reinforced concrete being used in residential construction.

  • Glyn is architecturally significant as one of the finest residential examples of the Arts and Crafts movement and for its associations with one of the movement’s best practitioners, Rodney Alsop (1881 -1932).


3. Watson house. 11 Tintern Avenue, Toorak (1915)

The house is an attic-form gabled roof house which has rendered brick walls, new Marseilies pattern roof tiles, new roof windows along the side of the roof, extended chimneys and is set close to the street.
  • A distinctive element in the front elevation is the prism-shaped, shingle-clad hood over the balcony, supported on timber struts, and associated flared shingied balustrade to the balcony below.
  • Windows, with double hung sashes and their multi-pane glazing, are symmetrically arranged at both levels about the recessed entry. A visually related new wing has been erected at the rear, being the 2 extra units on the site built 2000-2001; a ramp to underground car parking is on the north side of the house and the former grounds paved.
  • The house now is one element (unit 1) in an apartment or flat block. Because of the simple gabled attic form and the use of shingles, the style of the house has been linked with the Australian work of J Horbury-Hunt, deriving from the North American East Coast Stick or Shingle Style
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PROPERTY INFORMATION: lot 8, LP4429
The former Watson house at 11 Tintern Avenue Toorak is iocally significant architecturally:
  • for its innovative design for its construction date, with the main distinctive elements being the balcony hood and balustrade, fenestration, and steeply gabled root form ( Criterion E1);
  • as an evocative example of Arts & Crafts architecture executed by one of the nation‘s foremost practitioners in that style, Rodney Alsop (Criterion H1)



4. 30 Albany Road, Toorak (1921)

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  • Architects - Klingender & Alsop
  • 1921 - R H Alsop, 90 William St. Melbourne Agent: Klingender & Alsop, 90 William St. Melbourne (MMBW Drainage Plan 13l498)
  • 1921-22 - First owner Mrs D H Alsop O/O Bk. hse. 8r, Lot 3l (Malvern Rate Books)
  • 1927 - Rodney Alsop, occupant (Sands & McDougall Directory)

A simple double gabled semi-attic style residence with the same strong building form as the single ridged gable form of the Craftsman bungalow. The two main gables have gable ends clad with vertical planked boards which extends down the half walls of the upper floor to the masonry section of the ground floor. Windows are the same Georgian Revival form used by Alsop at Stonnington Place.
  • This building appears to be comparatively intact and retains a dark finish to the vertical planked boarding of the upper floor, which provides the traditional contrast with the pebble dash finish to the ground floor walls.
  • 30 Albany Road is of state significance as being possibly the best surviving example of Alsop's Craftsman design adapted for an Australian setting. It represents an evolution from the smaller cottage style residences of Alsop in Stonnington Place and is of note for the manner in which a modest cottage character is maintained on a much larger house.
  • This building is note for the unusual composition of building forms and for the use of planked vertical timber in lieu of timber shingles. It is also of importance as being built by Alsop for his own use after he moved from his earlier house, The Croft 4 Stonnington Place. It is enhanced by its relationship to the Walter Butler mansion at l Linlithgow and its former outbuilding, the Cottage 1A Linlithgow Road, as well as Little Milton at 26 Albany Road and Avondale 26 Albany Road.


Residential Projects

Houses in the Toorak area (of both Malvern and Prahran) dominated the pages of contemporary journals of the inter-war period, to an extent unrivalled by other suburbs.
  • No other area in Melbourne had so many large and notable houses designed by prominent architects in this period.
  • During this period the architects represented in Malvern included the elder statesmem of the profession - Walter Butler, Rodney Alsop, William Blackett and Harold Desbrowe Annear. In addition were such rising lights as Marcus Martin, John Freeman, Leighton Irwin, Leslie Perrott and Edward Billson.
While the first years decades of the twentieth century saw a concentration on Arts and Crafts related modes, the inter-war period was dominated by Californian Bungalow, Old English, Spanish Mission and Georgian Revival styles.
  • This displacement was the result of a number of young architects having the ’grand tour' of Europe’s architectural glories whilst being on active service. In particular they were influenced by the simply planned houses of Italy, Spain and southern France.

1. Glyn, 224 Kooyong Road, Toorak (1908)

  • Architects: Klingender & Alsop 1908: for Sir Everard Studley Millerexternal image Glyn%252C%2520224%2520Kooyong%2520Road%2520Toorak%2520m12979.jpg

Glyn, a large mansion townhouse, was designed in 1908 by the noted architect Rodney H Alsop (1881-1932) for Sir Edward Miller (1848-1932) the leading financier and second son of Henry "Money"..Miller (1809—1888). After Sir Edward's death Glyn was owned and occupied by his son Everard Studley Miller (1886-1956) the art patron, collector and philantropist.

Glyn is of architectural and historical importancefor the following reasons:
  1. As an important early and fine example of the work of the architect and craftsman Rodney Alsop who played a major role in the introduction of the Arts and Crafts movement into Victoria in the early 19005. This movement, which had its origins in Britain in the 1850s, drew together amateur and professional artists, architects, educators and craftspeople.
  2. Glyn's interiors contain splendid examples of decoration in the Arts and Crafts manner, including leadlights, metal door and fireplace furniture and carved woodwork using Australian native flora motifs.
  3. As one of Victoria's grandest Edwardian period houses.
  4. For its historical associations with the financier Sir Edward Miller (1848—1923) and his son Everard Miller (1886-1956) .

2. Mawallok 3802 Geelong Road, Stockyard Hill (1908)

The Russell family were the first settlers at Mawallok in 1842 and the following five generations of their family farmed there until sold in 1980. The property has many historical associations apart from its rural history.
In 1907-08 this Arts and Crafts homestead was built to a design prepared by architects Klingender and Alsop, and the garden laid out to a plan prepared by William Guilfoyle, Director of the Melbourne Botanic Gardens in 1909.
Mawallok 29022
Mawallok 29022

  • The large house was constructed in reinforced concrete, an early use of this material for a domestic residence.
  • It has an asymmetrical composition with a dominant steep roof form featuring gables, gabled dormers and tall chimneys.
  • The interior includes notable elements such as the handsome Arts and Crafts inspired timber staircase leading to a timber-balustraded upstairs gallery which overlooks the large living space below.
  • Around 1927 the Melbourne engineer and World War I General Sir John Monash was commissioned to extend a small dam into a 22 acre lake. The pump house and a small shed were built in similar materials and style to the 1908 house. The raised terrace of the house looks across the sweep of lawn and lake to the distant vista of the Pyrenees Ranges and Mt Cole.
The historic Western District property Mawallok has an impressive seven-acre garden designed by renowned landscape architect, William Guilfoyle. The garden reflects Guilfoyle’s use of 18th century English landscape design principles and, even a century on, remains true to the original design with the flowing lines, sweeping lawns, curving shrubberies, winding paths and impressive vista that were so typical of his work.
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Mawallok is of aesthetic and historical significance as an outstanding example of a designed landscape.
  • Mawallok, with its extensive windbreak plantings, hedges, stones walls, gateways, drives, gravel courtyard, its Guilfoyle garden, lake and views to Mt Cole, is amongst the finest and largest gardens in Victoria.
  • William Guilfoyle, arguably Australia greatest garden designer, laid out the Royal Botanic Gardens from 1873-1909. Mawallok is his last known, and perhaps his grandest, homestead garden design, completed towards the end of his remarkable career.

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The Pyrenees ranges dominate the landscape to the north and because of the favourable topography, appear as if they are almost at the property border. This is enhanced by light and atmospheric conditions causing the mountains to appear different every day, and even during the day, with spectacular colour changes from dull grey and green through blue and purple (hence the “Blue Pyrenees”).

  • The Russells (original owners) would have had this in mind when planning this large new project. The site was obviously chosen (and subsequently landscaped) to capture and exploit the view.
  • Guilfoyle seemingly effortlessly succeeded in binding the Arts and Crafts house, a garden of flowing curves and mini and surprise vistas, with a stunning landscape.
  • The house, the garden and the views are inextricably woven in partnership, hopefully for all time.



Mawallok showing golf course designed by Mawallok squire Alec Russell
Mawallok showing golf course designed by Mawallok squire Alec Russell
Mawallok is also well known as one of the major historic gardens in Australia and indeed is also known to overseas garden enthusiasts: It is included in the British publication “1001 GARDENS you must see before you die."
It is acknowledged by garden experts as the best William Guilfoyle (designer of the Melbourne Botanic Gardens) garden remaining in private hands today.

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The garden is on the National estate register and is listed by Heritage Victoria.
Today, virtually all of the original buildings on the property survive and are still used for the purpose for which they were built.
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3. 329 Glenferrie Road Malvern (1911)

  • Architects: Klingender & Alsop 1911: for Mrs Mary Bell (demolished)
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4. Stonnington Place Toorak

"Renowned architect Rodney Alsop designed and built a unique precinct in a section of Stonnington Place, Toorak, buying first the land and then erecting four houses:
  1. The Croft, 4 Stonnington Place (1913) Alsop's own house, now demolished
  2. 8 Stonnington Place (1914), now demolished
  3. Tongaboo, 6 Stonnington Place (1916)
  4. Crumpford, 2 Stonnington Place (1918)

1. 'The Croft' 4 Stonnington Place, Toorak (1913)

  • (Demolished - timber construction?)
‘The Croft(s)’, ‘expressed a concern for simple, unornamental and functional architecture … which was quite advanced for contemporary practice.’
  • The Croft, 6 Stonnington Place, Malvern (1913) (demolished), reflected the cross ridged type of Oakden & Ballantyne’s Illabarook but, with its juxtaposition of tall roof and dormer and timber balcony rather than verandah, was intermediate between the picturesque, English styling of Edrington or Glyn and the Craftsman bungalow idiom of 12 Uvadale Grove or Leighwood.

2. 8 Stonnington Place Toorak (1914)

  • Architects: Klingender and Alsop (demolished - timber construction)

external image 8%2520Stonnington%2520Place%2520toorak%2520m13083.jpg

  • Architects: F L & K Klingender, 1929: Alterations and additions for Mrs Smalley

3. Tongaboo, 6 Stonnington Place Toorak (1916)

is locally significant architecturally and historically: as a relatively well preserved and successful house designed by and built for the noted Arts & Crafts architect, Rodney Alsop

  • and 6a Stonnington Place Toorak, Architects: Klingencler & Alsop, 1916: Arthur and Ida Rentoul Outhwait
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external image Tongaboo%252C%25206%2520Stonnington%2520Place%2520m13087.jpg
Tongaboo, 6 Stonnington Place Toorak
Tongaboo, 6 Stonnington Place Toorak

4. Crumpford, 2 Stonnington Place Toorak (1918)

external image Crumpford%252C%25202%2520Stonnington%2520Place%2520m13090.jpg
  • Crumpford, 2 Stonnington Place, Malvern (1916), a single ridged attic villa with ashort verandah supported on stone piers, clinker brick walls and corbelled chimneys,represents a clear statement of English picturesque cottage design, and it is clear that Alsop,like many of his contemporaries, was moving rather freely between the English and American idioms in this period.
    • Architects: Klingender & Alsop 1918: for R H Alsop; (Demolished 2009)

external image Crumpford%252C%25202%2520Stonnington%2520Place%2520m13091.jpg


5. 3 Mernda Road Kooyong (1915)

  • Architects: Klingender and Alsop 1915: for Mrs Officerexternal image 3%2520Mernda%2520Road%2520m13133.jpg

6. 1088 Malvern Road, Armadale (1916)

  • Architects: Klingender & Alsop 1916: for Mrs P A Finlayexternal image 1088%2520Malvern%2520Road%2520m13028.jpg


7. Albany, 40 Albany Road (1919)

  • Klingender & Alsop 1919
external image Albany%252C%252040%2520Albany%2520Road%2520Toorak.jpg
Albany 40 Albany Road Toorak.jpg



8. 2 Moralla Road Kooyong (1920)


  • Architects: A &K Henderson 1920

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9. 30 Albany Road Toorak (1921)Architects: Klingender & Alsop, 1921: R H Alsop

A simple double gabled semi-attic style residence with the same strong building form as the single ridged gable form of the Craftsman bungalow.
  • The two main gables have gable ends clad with vertical planked boards which extends down the half walls of the upper floor to the masonry section of the ground floor. Windows are the same Georgian Revival form used by Alsop at Stonnington Place.
  • This building appears to be comparatively intact and retains a dark finish to the vertical planked boarding of the upper floor, which provides the traditional contrast with the pebble dash finish to the ground floor walls.

  • 30 Albany Road is of state significance as being possibly the best surviving example of Alsop's Craftsman design adapted for an Australian setting. It represents an evolution from the smaller cottage style residences of Alsop in Stonnington Place and is of note for the manner in which a modest cottage character is maintained on a much larger house.
This building is note for the unusual composition of building forms and for the use of planked vertical timber in lieu of timber shingles. It is also of importance as being built by Alsop for his own use after he moved from his earlier house, The Croft 4 Stonnington Place.
  • It is enhanced by its relationship to the Walter Butler mansion at l Linlithgow and its former outbuilding, the Cottage 1A Linlithgow Road, as well as Little Milton at 26 Albany Road and Avondale 26 Albany Road.
external image 30%2520Albany%2520Road%2520Toorak%2520m14054.jpg
external image 30%2520Albany%2520Road%252C%2520Toorak.jpg
30 Albany Road Toorak
30 Albany Road Toorak



10. 606 Toorak Road Toorak (1923)

  • (not scheduled) Architects: A & K Henderson, Alsop & Martin 1923: Owner, Misses A J, J R, H L Aitkenexternal image 606%2520Toorak%2520Road%2520Toorak.jpg



11. 17 Stonnington Place Toorak (1925)

  • for Orient. Sn. Co. Ltd. 1925external image 17%2520Stonnington%2520Place%2520Toorak.jpg

12. 13 Whernside Avenue Toorak (1926)

  • Architects: Klingender & Alsop 1926: for Herbert WertheimIn 1926,
  • Architects Klingender & Alsop designed a large residence for Herbert Wertheim, the principal of the Wertheim Piano Factory, on the corner of Hopetoun Road.external image 13%2520Wernside%2520Avenue%2520m13052.jpg


13. 6 Church Street, Toorak (1927)

  • Architect: Rodney H Alsop 1927: for Mrs Moore, was featured in The Australian Home Beautiful, July 1930.external image 6%2520Church%2520Street%2520Toorak%2520m12953.jpg


14. Anderson Street South Yarra


  • Pitched roofed residence, Anderson St., South Yarra
    Pitched roofed residence, Anderson St., South Yarra


Craftsman Bungalow Work

1. 12 Uvadale Grove, Kew (1915)

  • (demolished)
The house at 12 Uvadale Grove, Kew was significant as an intact example of the work of important Melbourne architect Rodney Alsop, then of Klingender & Alsop.
  • Completed in 1915 for Henry C Newton, an electrical engineer, it is believed to retain many of its original internal features, including beaten metal firehoods and timber wall panelling, which were probably designed and in some cases made by the architect.
  • It is one of the earliest surviving examples of the Craftsman-influenced, single-ridged bungalow of the type introduced to Melbourne by Oakden and Ballantyne in 1908.
  • Typical of its style in all details, it has eaves overhanging to form front and rear verandahs, a dormer-windowed attic and stained and oiled, rather than painted, weatherboards. Its Arts and Crafts interior is integral to the style of the building and therefore its significance. Classified: 01/11/1990

2. Leighwood, (1915)

222 Mountjoy Parade Lorne, Surf Coast Shire, Victoria, Heritage Listing (VIC)
LEIGHWOOD SOHE 2008
LEIGHWOOD SOHE 2008

Leighwood Mountjoy Parade Lorne side view March 1985
Leighwood Mountjoy Parade Lorne side view March 1985

LEIGHWOOD, 222 MOUNTJOY PARADE LORNE VIC
LEIGHWOOD, 222 MOUNTJOY PARADE LORNE VIC

Leighwood Mountjoy Parade Lorne front view March 1985
Leighwood Mountjoy Parade Lorne front view March 1985

Rodney Alsop designed Leighwood at 222 Mountjoy Parade, Lorne for the Bell family in 1915.
  • Both the Bell and Alsop families had associations with Lorne. The Bells were connected generally with the nearer western district.
  • Leighwood is an excellent example of the bungalow type both for its original Indian qualities and, more clearly, as a combination of the Californian and Craftsman Bungalow styles.
  • It was designed very much as a retreat from urban living.

The informality of Leighwood is innovative. It is created by its planning and siting as much as the use of plain materials and simple details.
  • There is direct access from the outside to the sitting room, dining room and kitchen. The plan is not centred on a formal hall.
  • The bungalow became the dominant domestic building type after the First World War.
  • Leighwood is an outstanding early example. It was executed with finesse and simplicity by a leading and gifted designer and remains remarkably intact in an evocative setting.(Registered)Register of the National Estate


Major Works by Rodney Alsop

1. Footscray Park

  • Heritage Listing (VIC) - Ballarat Road Footscray, Maribyrnong City
FOOTSCRAY PARK SOHE 2008
FOOTSCRAY PARK SOHE 2008

Footscray Park of 15 hectares (37 acres) was permanently reserved in 1911 as a site for a Public Park and Recreation purposes.
  • The park's creation was largely due to the efforts of the citizens of Footscray who successfully lobbied the State Government and the Victorian Racing Club for the reservation of the park, and then contributed to its development through donations of labour and plants, with the local technical school building the lookout shelter.

  • The park was designed by noted architect Rodney Alsop who won a competition for its design 1911.
  • The plan was largely implemented by David Matthews, Superintendent of Parks and Gardens from 1916 until 1964, with the assistance of noted orchidologist, William Nicholls. The park features characteristic structures in an Edwardian style, in particular, rustic stone structures, lookout shelter, drinking fountains, arbours, bridges, ponds, and clover-shaped flower beds.
  • The park also has a most unusual and finely carved Platypus Fountain as well as a war memorial and a memorial to Henry Lawson. The design of Footscray Park fully exploits the northerly sloping site, providing external vistas to the Maribyrnong River, Flemington Racecourse and the city.
  • Footscray Park is an important community recreation facility and hosts two of Melbourne's largest annual events, the Saltwater Festival and the Vietnamese Festival.

H2158 St Mark s Church from Burke Rd
H2158 St Mark s Church from Burke Rd

2. St Mark's Anglican Church

Heritage Listing (VIC) - 1 Canterbury Road Camberwell, Boroondara City

St Mark's Anglican Church, Camberwell, was built in 1927-28 and designed by Rodney Alsop. It contains a large and well executed collection of stained glass windows by Napier and Christian Waller, Joseph Stansfield and other local artists, a war memorial chapel and an organ by prominent local firm, George Fincham & Sons.
  • The Parish of St Mark's was established in 1912, and the 1914 church hall, designed by Louis R. Williams and Alexander North, held all church activities for the next fourteen years. St Mark's church was built between 1927 and 1928, and was designed by noted architect Rodney Alsop, who was significant to the Arts and Crafts movement in Victoria, and is seen as one of its best practitioners.
  • The imposing Gothic design, influenced by the architect's involvement in the Arts and Crafts movement, was intended to take advantage of the 'most commanding site in the Diocese'.
  • Alsop was better known for his domestic designs and the Footscray Park and in 1932 his design of the Winthrop Hall in the Hackett Buildings at the University of Western Australia was awarded the bronze medal by the Royal Institute of British Architects. St Mark's is his only known church design.
  • The foundation stone was laid in 1927 and the church building officially opened in July 1928. With the post-World War One war memorial movement at its peak in the 1920s, a key feature of the planning of St Mark's was the inclusion of a war memorial within the church building.


3. Box Hill Cemetery Columbarium And Myer Memorial

Heritage Listing (VIC) - Middleborough Road Box Hill, Whitehorse City
BOX HILL CEMETERY COLUMBARIUM AND MYER MEMORIAL SOHE 2008
BOX HILL CEMETERY COLUMBARIUM AND MYER MEMORIAL SOHE 2008

Box Hill Cemetery, first gazetted in 1873, was extended twice in Victorian times and had a substantial 1935 addition to the cemetery grounds. The two most highly significant elements within the cemetery are the columbarium and the Sidney Myer memorial.
  • The word columbary derives from Latin "columba" meaning dove, a columbarium being a dovecote or underground vault with recesses in the walls to receive the ashes of the dead. In the 1920s the Box Hill Cemetery Trust defined it as a subterranean sepulchre set apart for the reception of urns of ashes. Whilst cremation was made legal in Victoria in 1903, only 10% of Victorians who died in the 1930s were being cremated.
  • Following permission from the Health Department in 1928, the columbarium was erected in 1929 to a design by architects Rodney Alsop and A Bramwell Smith, who, it was claimed, sought to evoke the vista of the tomb of Galla Placidia at Ravenna.
  • Located at the centre of a system of radial pathways, the columbarium is in the style of a Byzantine church and is constructed of rendered brick. Entrance is via a gabled porch, through bronze doors. The Greek cross plan has a small octagonal tower at the crossing, with copper sheathed cupola, and the arms of the building are roofed in Cordovan tiles. Light is admitted by lunette windows in the gable ends of the arms. Niches and recesses in the walls are for storing urns, and caskets are buried in a chamber in the concrete floor. The ceilings were originally painted with gold stars on a sky-blue background.


4. Winthrop Hall, University of W.A.

Hackett Memorial Buildings University of Western Australia Mounts Bay Rd (Heritage Registered)

In 1926, an architectural competition invited new designs for Winthrop Hall and the Hackett Memorial Buildings at The University of Western Australia. A bequest by the University’s first Chancellor, Sir John Winthrop Hackett, had provided £150,000 for this purpose.

The winners of the second competition were the Melbourne architects Rodney Alsop (1881–1932) and Conrad Sayce (1888– 1935).
Winthrop Hall UWA
Winthrop Hall UWA

  • Fifty one designs had been considered by the panel, which was comprised of Professor Leslie Wilkinson, Professor of Architecture, Mr A. R. L. Wright, President of the Royal Institute of Architects of Western Australia and Dr Athelson Saw, the Chancellor of the University, and that they had particularly commended the general layout and the design for the great hall, the loggia and the tower in the winning design.

Fig. 7.08 Alsop & Sayce (archs), view of Winthrop Hall from the south, c. 1933. University of Western Australia Archives. Courtesy of West Australian Newspapers Ltd.
  • The conditions of the competition had stipulated that the winner would be employed as the architect for the project unless the adjudicators in consultation with the Senators objected.
  • During this discussion, Professor Ross asked what style the winning design represented. Professor Wilkinson is reported to have answered “it is in the style which our grandsons will call ‘Early Western Australian Renaissance’.”
  • Construction of the buildings began soon after, and Winthrop Hall was officially opened in April 1932.

Alsop and Sayce began the project together, although Alsop was the senior architect and assumed responsibility for all correspondence about the project, but fell out in the process and Sayce left before the buildings were completed.
  • One of their disagreements centred on Alsop’s replacement of the original clock tower with an Italian style campanile.
UWA’s signature building, Winthrop Hall by Alsop and Sayce.
UWA’s signature building, Winthrop Hall by Alsop and Sayce.

  • Informed by Wilkinson and Annear’s opinions about the site and by the
    Winthrop Hall’s ceiling rafters embellished with aboriginal motifs.
    Winthrop Hall’s ceiling rafters embellished with aboriginal motifs.
    opportunity to implement their own ideas concerning the appropriateness of Mediterranean elements for Australia’s climate, Alsop and Sayce created by the early 1930s an eclectic set of buildings that have been variously described as Moorish/ Renaissance, ‘Inter-War Romanesque’ and ‘essentially Mediterranean’.

  • Of greatest importance is that these buildings set the standard for future development of the Western Australian campus, ‘arguably the nation’s most beautiful’, in which the landscaping became an integral factor. Wilkinson’s role in emphasising the importance of landscape elements, along with Alsop’s own adherence to Mediterranean ideals, influenced this important and coherent architectural statement—one in which the references to California are particularly cogent.
5. Temperance and General Mutual Life offices in several State capitals

Winthrop Hall, The University of Western Australia

A view of Winthrop Hall and the clock tower at the University of Western Australia.
A view of Winthrop Hall and the clock tower at the University of Western Australia.

A view of Winthrop Hall and the clock tower at the University of Western Australia. They are built in an Italian or Mediterranean Romanesque style, typified by rounded arches, arcading, thick walls (they are 9ft thick) and the large square campanile tower. When asked about the style of the design, the architect described it variously as “Renaissance”, and as being of Italian ancestry, but notably “anglicised and adapted to the local conditions”

There was at first, as historian Fred Alexander noted, some concern over “the wisdom of preferring a boldly Mediterranean or Spanish type of architecture to the more familiar neo-gothic style generally favoured by academic authorities”, but these concerns faded as the buildings began to take shape and by the time Winthrop Hall was officially opened on 13 April 1932, it was highly praised as a fitting commemoration to its founder (See Fred Alexander, Campus at Crawley: A Narrative and Critical Appreciation of the First Fifty Years of The University of Western Australia, F.W. Cheshire, Melbourne, 1963, p.136).

Winthrop Hall was designed by Melbourne architects Rodney Alsop and Conrad Sayce, whose joint entry won an architectural competition held by the University Senate in 1927. The impetus for the competition was a large bequest left by the University’s first Chancellor, Sir John Winthrop Hackett, who had died in 1916. Alsop, the senior of the pair, was employed as the lead architect and they began the project of building Winthrop Hall and the Hackett Buildings together. However, they fell out in the process and Sayce left before the buildings were completed. One of the points on which they disagreed was Alsop’s replacement of the clock tower in the original design with the Italian Campanile style tower that stands today

external image 9a774edb54fbbfee1df7673464991f5d.jpg

Hackett Buildings. The Architect’s Description.


Alsop describes the guidelines he was set,

  • namely that there was to be a multi-functional hall capable of seating a large number of people,
  • two other buildings that would house lecture rooms, offices, the University administration, the Guild and a refectory,
  • and that the buildings were to be monumental in order to adequately commemorate their founder, Sir John Winthrop Hackett (1848-1916).
  • Alsop explains his rationale for the lay out of the buildings along three sides of the Court of Honour, (with the fourth side open to what was then known as the Perth-Fremantle road)
  • and the addition of ‘cloisters’ along the front of the Hackett Hall and the Arts and Administration Building as an attempt to unify the different buildings.
  • external image uwa_winthrop-hall_reduced-f_1847c24267.jpgHe refers to Winthrop Hall repeatedly as a ‘great hall’ and describes its shape as rectangular with transepts at the ends of the dais “after the tradition of the halls of England”. He also describes some of its main features, including the rose window and elaborately patterned ceiling in the hall, and the vaulted ceiling, marble floor and colourful mosaics in the foyer.


Rose Window, Winthrop Hall, the University of Western Australia

A view of the large rose window on the eastern wall of Winthrop Hall at The University of Western Australia. Inside the hall, the rose window is a focal point above the dais. Rose windows were popular decorative features of Romanesque and especially Gothic architecture in England and Europe by the thirteenth century.





JONATHAN CHANCELLOR | 16 OCTOBER 2014

Toorak's Aberfeldie with garden grotto designed by Rodney Alsop

Early 20th-century architect Rodney Alsop, who died in 1932, designed Perth's English-style London Court and the University of Western Australia.
Toorak's Aberfeldie with garden grotto designed by Rodney Alsop
Toorak's Aberfeldie with garden grotto designed by Rodney Alsop


A grand Victorian estate in Toorak with a garden and grotto designed by Rodney Alsop has been listed for sale.
After 102 years, the Wettenhall family has listed Aberfeldie, the 4,425 square metre offering at 14 Lascelles Avenue.

  • It includes an 1865 Victorian residence, a second more substantial property, built in 1962, and a north-south tennis court, which runs the length of Orrong Road.
  • It was Dr Roland Wettenhall, who bought Aberfeldie in 1912, and his son, Dr Norman Wettenhall, who also lived at the home.
  • In the 1960s the north-west corner of Orrong and Toorak roads was sold making way for an apartment tower.
  • Marshall White Stonnington's Richard Mackinnon is expecting about $12 million.

The Armadale cinema designed by the well known architects Klingender and Alsop opened in September 1912, is one of the earliest surviving examples of a purpose built theatre in Melbourne and Victoria and is relatively intact.


OBITUARY Mr. Rodney H. Alsop.

external image Late%2520Mr%2520Rodney%2520Alsop.jpg

Mr. Rodney Howard Alsop died unex pectedly at his home at Tintern avenue,Toorak, early yesterday morning. Mr. Alsop, who was a son of the late Mr. John Alsop, trustee manager, and actuary of the State Savings Bank of Victoria, was a fellow of the Royal Institute of British Ar chitects and a fellow of the Australian, West Australian and Victorian Institutes of Architects. For many years he was a valued member of the council of the Victorian institute. As the first director of the Architectural Atelier at the Melbourne University and later as honorary lecturer, his deep interest in and encouragement of students helped very materially to mould and govern sound principles of training.
His career was distinguished by very high aims in design and the use of materials. Many visits abroad helped to develop his skill in his work, and as recently as 1925 he represented Australian architects at an international con ference of architects. He designed many noteworthy buildings - some in collaboration with partners - and his taste and quality of design and plan are well exem plified in the buildings completed recently in Perth for the West Australian University. These buildings include the Hackett Memorial buildings, and form a most distinguished group.
As architect for the work Mr Alsop had just been awarded the 1932 bronze medal instituted recently by the Royal Institute of British Architects and awarded trienally for work in Western Australia. This is the first time an award of this nature has been made by an overseas bodv to an Australian architect for an Australian building. Mr. Alsop is survived by Mrs Alsop, a daughter of Sir Nicholas Lockyer. The funeral cortege will reach the Brighton Cemetery at 11 o'clock this morning. Arrangements are in the handsof A. A. Sleight Pty. Ltd.
[3]
  1. ^ Bryce Raworth, A Question of Style, Unpublished Master’s Thesis, University of Melbourne, 1993.
  2. ^ http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/alsop-rodney-howard-5007
  3. ^











    http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/4505572