JUST before the Great War, a handsome and rugged Englishman named George Simpson-Hayward beguiled batsmen around the world with his almost unplayable underarm lobs.
Simpson-Hayward was a master tactician who spent three years perfecting a bamboozling off-break in his back garden before unleashing it in South Africa, where in one innings he routed the opposition with the stunning figures of 8 for 43.
This gorgeous home in View Street, North Perth, captures the gentility of that bygone era; there’s a tranquility as you walk through its three large bedrooms with their high ceilings and open fireplaces.
I can picture a family cosying up beside one, with mum or dad thumbing through The Secret Garden.
There’s a swathe of other period touches throughout the house, including the big porch out the front, beautiful, wide jarrah floorboards, gorgeous ceiling roses and the obligatory stained-glass front door.
I’m not sure if there’s been an update to the bathroom, but it certainly captures the style of the era, complete with a gorgeous clawfoot bath.
The house has had some complementary updates, including a big 6×7.5 metre living and dining area at the rear, and a modern-ish kitchen with a galley window, so you can pass dishes straight across to the table.
French doors lead to a covered alfresco and neat-sized backyard, featuring a gas-heated pool that’s perfect for a winter plunge.
And there’s just enough space to be working on your off-break lobs.
Down one side of the house, the current owner has created an enclosed cat run, and as I arrived one moggie was curiously peaking through the netting.
It’s a great use of an unwieldy part of the property (how many I’ve seen that are just dumping grounds) and helps protect the local birdlife.
I also love this home for its proximity to the stunning heritage buildings just up the road, with the Town Hall leading you into what’s emerging as a funky North Perth town centre. I can’t wait until they get a piazza happening.
There’s a swag of great cafes you can walk to on Angove Street (I reviewed The Old Laundry recently and was really impressed) and plenty of unique local shopping.
by STEVE GRANT
52 View St, North Perth
0413 610 660