Flint Hill, Woodend listed by Sir Rod Carnegie

Flint Hill, Woodend listed by Sir Rod Carnegie
Flint Hill, Woodend listed by Sir Rod Carnegie

Flint Hill, the 27 hectare Woodend retreat owned by businessman Sir Roderick Carnegie since 1980, has been listed for sale.

It was a grand vision beginning in the 1930's that has matured into one of the great woodland garden estates of Australia. 

With magnificent specimen trees forming a canopy over sweeping lawns, the house is bordered by sculptural hedges and hundreds of majestic rhododendrons. 

There are winding walks leading to formal ponds and lake.

The ten acre garden is surrounded by an impressive eucalypt parkland with views to Mount Macedon and Hanging Rock.

It was first the home of the Brookes family. 

Harold Brookes was the brother of Sir Norman Brookes.

Harold Brookes was managing partner of William Brookes and Co., Queensland graziers, and a director of Australian Paper Manufacturers Co. Ltd. and Australasian Paper and Pulp Co. Ltd.

He was a past president of the Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind, and his many sporting interests included membership of Royal Melbourne and Royal Sydney Golf Clubs and the Victorian Lawn Tennis Association.

It was in 1922 when they bought a partly timbered block of 130 acres one mile north of Woodend. As the soil was a poor, heavy, grey, clay loam over very heavy, yellow clay, huge amounts of mulch were added, mostly grass hay.

The original rhododendrons were grown from seed - mainly from the Rothschilds at Exbury.

Their son John Brookes sold Flint Hill after compiling his gardening memoir, Flint Hill 1922-1955.

When the Carnegie's Rod and Carmen, bought Flint Hill in 1980 the property at 65 Romsey Road had changed hands three more times, and become neglected overrun with blackberries.

The rainfall averages 872 mm and Flint Hill is 579 metres above sea level. 

"Flint Hill is historic and stately with a stunning woodland garden of outstanding beauty and botanical significance," Kay & Burton agent Gerald Delany noted.

It is listed in conjunction with John Keating, who assisted the Carnegie's secure the property after its unsuccessful 1979 auction.

Flint Hill is 70 kms or 45 minutes non-peak time via the Calder Freeway to the Melbourne CBD.

More than $8 million could be expected for the two storey, eight bedroom offering in the tightly held Woodend market. The purchaser will have the option to purchase an adjoining 83 hectare of farming land in six titles.

Sir Roderick Carnegie, who turned 83 last month, was a prominent Australian businessman, primarily working in the coal industry, interrupted in the 1960s when he founded the Australian practice of McKinsey in Melbourne. In 1972 he joined CRA Limited (now Rio Tinto) as finance director serving as managing director from 1974 to 1986, and also as its chairman.

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor is one of our authors. Jonathan has been writing about property since the early 1980s and is editor-at-large of Property Observer.

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Gardens

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