By Cathy Jones
‘Greenock’, 66-68 Abbotsford Rd Homebush is built on the corner of Abbotsford Road and Meredith Street. ‘Greenock’ was built in 1916 for wool merchant James Paterson (1865-1933) on part lots 1 & 2, section 13 of the Village of Homebush Estate 1878 subdivision. The house is a handsome Inter-War bungalow with broad gables facing both of the Meredith Street and Abbotsford Road frontages. The house has deep verandahs and low gables, characteristic of the bungalow style.
The house was constructed on a large site with 150 foot frontages on both Abbotsford Rd and Meredith Street. In June 1916, Paterson lodged an application to construct a brick cottage of 7+ rooms at an estimated value of £1450. In November 1916, Paterson sold part of the grounds facing Meredith Street measuring 38 ½ perches to Albert and Helena Zeitler (which became 17 Meredith Street). A further subdivision occurred in June 1920, where land facing Meredith Street measuring 38 ½ perches, was sold to Frank Low Thompson (which became 15 Meredith Street).
James Paterson named the house ‘Greenock’ after his birthplace in Greenock, Renfrewshire, Scotland. He migrated to New Zealand with his parents in 1870 and arrived in New South Wales in 1890. He was first connected with the NZ Loan and MA Ltd, and the Aberdeen Freezing Works. He later founded the firm of James Paterson & Co, wood and tallow merchants, and the Paterson Wool Co. Ltd. He was a member of the Australian Jockey Club (AJC).
He married Clarice Muriel Cameron (1890-1941) in 1921 in Burwood NSW. Prior to building ‘Greenock’, the Paterson’s lived in ‘Elstow’ (now Meredith House) in Meredith Street Homebush. He died on 6 October 1933 at ‘Greenock’ at the age of 68. He was buried at Rookwood Cemetery and survived by his widow.
The property was transferred by transmission from the Permanent Trustee Company of NSW Ltd (Executor James Paterson deceased) to Mrs Clarice Muriel Paterson in September 1935. Mrs Paterson leased the house in October 1935 to Arthur John Samuel Austin, an estate agent of Newtown. Following the death of Mrs Clarice Paterson in 1941, ownership transferred to the Permanent Trustee Company of NSW until the sale of the property to Manly Geddes of Homebush, of 63 Abbotsford Road Homebush. Geddes was a butcher. Geddes remained the owner until March 1956, when ownership transferred to John Thomas Ryan, busman, of Chullora. A further subdivision occurred in May 1956 of land titled ‘Lot A’ which was sold in May 1956 to Norman Marshall, a local builder (which became 70 Abbotsford Road). The house was sold in 1960 to Basil and Nina Catterns as joint tenants.
Land Title Search of 66-68 Abbotsford Road
MR. J. PATERSON. (1933, October 9). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 – 1954), p. 12. Retrieved December 20, 2020, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article17013961
NSW Electoral Rolls, Division of Reid – Subdivision of Homebush, 1933
NSW Electoral Rolls, Division of Reid – Subdivision of Homebush, 1932
Society of Australian Genealogists, 2003, Rookwood Cemetery Headstone Transcriptions,
Strathfield Council Building Register Vol.1