I've kept this blog, on and off, since 2006. In 2015 I used it to chart daily encounters, images, thoughts and feelings about volcanic basalt/bluestone in Melbourne and Victoria, especially in the first part of the year. I plan to write a book provisionally titled Bluestone: An Emotional History, about human uses of and feelings for bluestone. But I am also working on quite a few other projects and a big grant application, especially now I am on research leave. I'm working mostly from home, then, for six months, and will need online sociability for company!

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

My Year with Bluestone: Discreet building on hipster Brunswick St

Brunswick St Fitzroy is now a very hipster place; full of gorgeous little bars, pubs, restaurants, boutiques, specialist shops, perfumeries, bike shops, etc. etc. There are also heaps of bluestone buildings here as Fitzroy, just north-east of the main city blocks, was Melbourne's first suburb. There are lots of great resources, published and on-line, about its buildings. And I'm the first to acknowledge I've not done my basic research here on this building (with others of the buildings I've looked at, there's more available online), but it's a very striking one, on the north-east corner of King William and Brunswick. There's a faded photograph on the State Library website, but no further information about it. Here's the corner view:

It has the appearance of a warehouse, rather than a shop, given the size of the front windows. Or perhaps it was a rooming house of some kind? Here is the view from King William St:
 And a closeup. I believe this building is now the parish office of All Saints Church:

Here's the church itself, further down King William St. There's rather more written about this church and I'll revisit another day:
 And here's a view from the back of the building on Brunswick St: observe the contrast between the ornate street frontage where the 'quarry cut' is actually rougher (i.e. more fancy) than the smoother, less visible back wall.

And a handsome doorway and two fine lions...

The building is surprisingly anonymous as you walk down the street. It doesn't scream "style", as so many other buildings on the street do; nor does it invite you in for a micro-brew. It's turned, institutionally, to the church on the side road, a little historical pocket in this bustling street. More to come another time. I've had a quick look here at the Fitzroy History Society, but need to look at Tony Birch's history of Fitzroy, too.

1 comment:

heritagpoliceman said...

I looked this up as best I could for an instagram post, and when the Catholics bought in the 30s it was an hotel, though prob not an actual pub. Prob built as such like the similarly sized 1857 canavan hotel up brunswick street nr Alexandra Pde. Great proportions and great lions !