By Cathy Jones
Abbotsford Road is built on the ‘Village of Homebush’ Estate, a 1878 subdivision of the Underwood Estate.
26 Abbotsford Rd is built on the ‘Smith’s Estate’ (DP 6382) which was subdivided in 1912, creating Melrose St and residential lots on Abbotsford Rd (Lots 1-8), Melrose St (Lots 9-14, 23-28) and Broughton Rd (Lots 19-22).
‘Merrydale’, 26 Abbotsford Rd Homebush was built on Lot 1 of Smiths Estate subdivision. Approval was granted on October 27 1913 to build a house for its owner George Wordsworth, a prolific local builder of this period. The building was a brick cottage and slate roof of more than five rooms at an estimated cost of £900. The house was then on-sold to Samuel Ritchie, an estate agent, presumably upon completion in 1913. About 1921, ownership of the house transferred to Walter Vout, a schoolteacher and later school headmaster.
Vout commenced his career in Albury in 1885. Among the schools with which he was associated were Marrickville, Prospect Reservoir, Koorawatha, Wyalong, Parramatta, North Sydney, Moree, Adamstown, and West Marrickville. In 1915, Mr. Vout undertook the establishment of the Demonstration School at Darlington, where students of the Teachers’ College received their practical training. In 1932, this school was transferred to Haberfield Demonstration School, where Mr. Vout ended his long term of service to the State as its Headmaster in 1935.
Vout owned and lived at ‘Merrydale’ with his wife Agnes until his death in 1941. Agnes Vout died in 1949. Ownership of the house transferred c.1949 to a Horace Nash, an accountant and his wife, Mary. Horace Nash died in 1955 and Mary Nash continued to own the house into at least 1960s.
Fox & Associates, Strathfield Heritage Study, 1986
WALTER VOUT. (1941, January 7). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 – 1954), p. 3. Retrieved August 7, 2021, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article17740287
HEADMASTER RETIRES. (1935, October 17). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 – 1954), p. 7. Retrieved August 7, 2021, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article17233762
Strathfield Council Building Register Vol. 1
Department of the Valuer General NSW – Valuation List – Valuation District of Strathfield 1924, 1933, 1945, 1949, 1960