Subscribe      List an Event or Business      Invite a Writer      Write for WN      Writers      Other Locations
list an event      1 million Australian readers every month      facebook

Mansions of Adelaide - Carramar

Home > Adelaide > Architecture | Historic Houses | Photography | Vintage and Retro
by Dave Walsh (subscribe)
I enjoy writing about Adelaide and its many attractions. If you think Adelaide is boring, the problem is not with Adelaide. Please click the link to Like my articles, and subscribe to see more. adelaideunearthed.blogspot.com.au
Published November 11th 2012
See it while you can
heritage building, Carramar, mansion, adelaide, James Hay Gosse, G&R Wills, Adelaide Steamship Company, parkside, parklands
Carramar, Formerly St Margarets


Carramar is a magnificent mansion at 179 Greenhill Road Parkside (corner of George Street), one of only three mansions remaining along the edge of the parklands.

After European settlement the land was originally owned by the South Australian Company and a house was built in 1847.

In 1886, a ten room house was built for Robert Gardiner. By 1909, James and Johanna Gosse (nee Barr Smith) owned the property. At this time Greenhill Rd was known as Park Terrace.

heritage building, Carramar, mansion, adelaide, James Hay Gosse, G&R Wills, Adelaide Steamship Company, parkside, parklands
Carramar From the Front


The majority of the present structure dates from around 1910, and it was formerly known as St Margaret's when occupied by James Hay Gosse and his family. Mr. Gosse was a solicitor and the managing director of G&R Wills and Co and was on the board of the Adelaide Steamship Company. A prominent businessman, he was knighted in 1947.

heritage building, Carramar, mansion, adelaide, James Hay Gosse, G&R Wills, Adelaide Steamship Company, parkside, parklands
A G&R Wills Advertisement in 1924


In 1931, there was a report of the house being used to host a dance for 70 young people.

In 1933 the upper echelons of society gathered again, reported by The Mail: THIS has been a week of farewells to Capt. T. E. Barr Smith, the Governor's A.D.C, Miss Ursula Barr Smith, and Mr. Jimmy Gosse, who sailed for London by the Strathaird yesterday. Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Goese gave a cocktail party for them at St. Margaret's, Park terrace, Parkside, and there was a gathering of the clans, including Mr. and Mrs. T. E. Barr Smith, Gen. Sir Reginald and Lady Buckland, and Mrs. Richard Legoe.

heritage building, Carramar, mansion, adelaide, James Hay Gosse, G&R Wills, Adelaide Steamship Company, parkside, parklands
In the Garden @ Carramar Parkside


The Gosse family lived in the house until the 1950s when it was converted to a hospital, and later a mental health clinic.

Carramar has been used over the last 45 years by the Department of Health but is now empty and to be sold.

heritage building, Carramar, mansion, adelaide, James Hay Gosse, G&R Wills, Adelaide Steamship Company, parkside, parklands
Carramar For Sale Notice


The house has been recognised as a fine example of uncommon Federation/Queen Anne domestic architecture style, for its use of materials and a high level of building craftsmanship.

Although listed as a State heritage site, the Weatherill government is relaxing restrictions to make it easier for developers to demolish places like this. Even the State Liberals, not normally known for opposing development have criticised the sale of this beautiful building.

heritage building, Carramar, mansion, adelaide, James Hay Gosse, G&R Wills, Adelaide Steamship Company, parkside, parklands
Carramar Rear With Later Additions


Unley Liberal MP David Pisoni is on record saying he feared new development on the site would lead to the demolition of an iconic piece of South Australian History.

The National Trust has placed Carramar in top position on its Heritage @ Risk 2012 list. To my knowledge this is the only current activity to help protect this piece of South Australian history.

Of course you could write to your MP. But given the complete lack of government action to protect the former Jade Monkey venue I cannot imagine that Premier Weatherill or Planning Minister Rau will take the slightest interest.

For now all that it seems you can do is enjoy viewing the building. While it still exists.
Help us improve  Click here if you liked this article  76
Share: email  facebook  twitter
Why? You have to envy people living here
Where: 179 Greenhill Rd, Parkside
Cost: Free
Your Comment
The reason why the State Government is selling the property because of its association with Child Abuse in the past directly related with the department. Like other many grand mansions in the suburbs, because of these links as well as churches they have been demolished or have been encouraged to be.
by wolve (score: 0|8) 2524 days ago
Is the mansion not a protected building? It is so sad when history is demolished to make way for the future.
by Bryony Harrison (score: 4|12470) 2533 days ago
Had to do do a double take on a couple of these photos they were so good.
by Nadine Cresswell-Myatt (score: 3|5675) 2482 days ago
Is there a petition I can sign to help save it??!!
by pam_b (score: 0|5) 2285 days ago
Articles from other cities
Featured
Foodi Photoh Classie
Top Events
Popular Articles
Categories
Lists
Questions