A Closer Look at Glengariff in Hendra

The iconic Glengariff in Hendra is one of Brisbane’s remaining large villa residences constructed during the late nineteenth century.

The massive historic home at 5 Derby Street, Hendra is definitely a head-turner with its beautiful architecture and landscaping.

From being the home of a bank manager to the home of a renowned Fortitude Valley businessman and later becoming an episcopal residence, Glengariff certainly has a lot of stories to tell if only its walls could speak.

History of the Glengariff in Hendra

View of the home and grounds of Brisbane residence, Glengariff, in 1923. Photo credit: State Library of Queensland and John Oxley Library; Negative number: 145445

Architect HGO Thomas designed Hendra’s majestic home which was built in 1888-1889 for bank manager Edward Jones. Jones was the first bank manager of the Commercial Bank of Australia in Queensland.

The first owner called the home Dura. It stands on nearly 5 acres of land acquired by Jones in 1886 from the Queensland Turf Club.

Although the home is ideally located near the state’s premier racecourse and to the Sandgate / City Railway line, Edward Jones did not reside at Dura for long. Records show that Jones no longer live there in 1892 and another manager of the Queensland National Bank, DG Stuart, rented the home untilĀ  TC Beirne and his family acquired it in 1898.

The Beirne Family

Family portrait at the wedding of Henry Alexander Cecil Douglas to Catherine Cecilia Beirne, 1914 Photo credit: nla.gov.au/nla.obj-151169578

After the acquisition of the property, the Beirnes decided to call it “Glengariff”. TC Beirne and his wife Ann Kavanagh had ten children, five daughters surviving infancy.

TC Beirne was publicly known for his Fortitude Valley store whilst Glengariff played a big role in his private life. According to the Australian Dictionary of Biography, his pastimes mainly involves spending time with his family in his home, Glengariff with its beautiful grounds, tennis, and croquet courts.

In 1907, TC Beirne worked with architect RS (Robin) Dods to carry out additions to Glengariff. Dods’ work at the house included the addition of double-storey verandah rooms to the western side of the house and the building in of cupboards in the dining room.

The Beirne family lived at Glengariff until TC Beirne died in 1949. Following their father’s passing, the five Beirne daughters gave Glengariff to the Catholic church as a present.

Glengariff Today

Glengariff (2009); Photo credit: Heritage Branch staff

After serving as an episcopal residence for several years, the church decided to sell the property in 1985 to its present owners.

Since then, the owner of Glengariff made several changes in the house and sold portions of the land in 1993.

Glengariff was added to the Queensland Heritage Register on 21 August 1992.

Apparently, one of remaining part of the original estate is the TC Beirne Park. Established in 1949, the park is located at the rear of the house.