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A Responsible Restoration

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Constructed in the 1860s, the Stone Store signifies the important expansion of Goonoo Goonoo Station, established in the 1840s near Tamworth in regional NSW. The store provided vital general store, post office and bank facilities for the growing village. The adapted two-story building now has a guest lounge as part of the new hospitality venture for this historic property.

Constructed from local fieldstone, the distinct character of the building has been retained – original timber floors and roof structure refurbished and left exposed. Newly introduced elements are designed to enhance the historical understanding of the building, while celebrating the beauty of the retained original elements. The front timber verandah has been reinstated and is based upon historic photographs, while a glass floor reveals the brickpit, originally used as a cool room or safe. A limited materials palette of timber, steel and glass provide distinct new components that complement the existing fabric.

Architect/Designer: Emma Lee, Tanner Kibble Denton Architect Pty Ltd

Engineer: Simon Wiltshier, Mott MacDonald

Builder: Brenden Chase Rudd, Chase Projects Pty Ltd


Doors: Legded and braced timber doors in New Guinea rosewood by Dengate Joinery, installed by Chase Projects Pty Ltd.

Joinery and Cabinetry: The original traditional twelve pane, doublehung timber windows were carefully restored by Tim and Paul Cheyne, local craftsmen, and Chase Projects Pty Ltd.

Floor Covering: T&G, Plywood. Australian Architectural Hardwoods supplied a recycled grey ironbark 150x12 solid timber flooring, which was laid over a red alert termite proof LVL and plywood system to the ground floor. The existing timber flooring of the first floor was retained, repaired and refinished. Comprising 180x25 planked flooring in cypress pine, sealed with a penetrative oil. The evidence of wear over the years enhances the rustic character of the building and bring warmth to the intimate space.

Stairs: Solid recycled grey ironbark treads on a steel structure. Ground floor ceiling is the original remediated australian cedar boards and batten. 200x18 board and 50x12 domed batten, which were removed and stripped back to remove paint, by Chase Projects and re-installed with a protective coating of organ oil. Original first floor roof structure remediated and retained expressed with new T&G V jointed cedar lining boards above, supplied by Tilling Timbers Existing ground floor beams and posts were retained, with supplementary timber posts of recycled grey ironbark to match the existing.

Rails and Balustrades: Cicular solid recycled grey ironbark handrail fixed to steel frame and mesh balustrade.

The Stone Store is an allegory of the beauty of timber and its fundamental strength as a building material. The interior has been designed to enhance the distinct character of the original building. Two levels of large open-plan spaces provide flexible accommodation for function events. Extensive use of natural timber from the floors, to the ceilings, posts, beams, doors, window and lintels, juxtaposed with the exposed stone walls and blackened steel elements, achieve a memorable impact.

Evoking a sense of the building’s 150-year history, elements such as the steel bars to the windows, a small postal opening to one of the 12-panes of a double hung window, have been restored. The glass floor exposing the brick-pit gives cause to contemplate the building’s past uses. The original cedar ceilings of the ground floor glow, stripped of their cream paint and the natural colour enriched with organ oil. The new staircase with solid treads of recycled grey ironbark is tucked neatly into the south west corner of the simple rectilinear building supported on a steel frame. Remnants of the original floor joists, that were cut to create the new opening for the staircase, remain evident in the stone walls.

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