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Published October 25th 2012
Is it a load of cobblers?
The Unprepossessing Exterior of the Mylor Bootmakers Cottage
There are many sad stories about heritage places, steeped in history but left to decay, or even worse those that are demolished for little reason.
This is not one of those. It's an inspiring tale about a small community that has come together to rebuild a place that was home to a man who died a hundred years ago.
Mylor is a small but scenic town in the Adelaide Hills with a population of around 1000. It's just down the road from the free Warrawong Sanctuary for Australian animals, where the wild life can roam at will and interact with visitors.
When it was proposed in 2009 that a crumbling and condemned ruined cottage near the Mylor oval be demolished, local residents learned that the building had some interesting history. Initially it was felt that the structure was too run down to restore, and it was proposed to demolish and replace it with a replica.
The Bootmakers Cottage Interior - Restoration in Progress
Funding for restoration work has been made available by the Adelaide Hills Council, from public donations, and through local fundraising events including the annual Wine & Roses Art and Photography Weekend in October.
Bootmaker Johnny Staples would probably be bemused by all the excitement today. Born in Kent, England in 1852, he emigrated to Australia in about 1883. After marrying in 1887 he moved to Mylor around 1904 where he played an active role in the local community until his death in 1919 aged 66 years.
Almost Any Materials Could be Used for Building Once