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Wednesday, January 20, 2016 – PAGE 7
Barns restoration under way
By Genevieve Cooper
The new owners of the Morialta Barns
at Norton Summit hope to have the first
stage of their renovations completed by
Steve and Fiona Butcher, who officially took
possession of the heritage-listed property in
late 2014, plan to be living in the place by
June and running their accommodation and
bushwalking tour businesses on site.
“It’s getting very close now ... we’re looking
forward to all the work being done,” Mr Butcher
The 3.3ha property was owned by the Adelaide
Hills Council until being put on the market in
The Butchers’ vision for the place was chosen
by the council in April 2013 from among 11
registrations of interest from prospective
However, the sale didn’t go through until
September 2014 when planning approval was
granted to turn the barns into a private home,
four tourist accommodation units and a base
for a bushwalking tour business.
The Yurrebilla and Heysen walking trails
meander through the barns property and the
Morialta Conservation Park.
The Morialta barns were built in the 1840s.
According to the council’s heritage survey,
the barns were built by businessman and
pastoralist John Baker who became the second
Premier of SA.
The property is made up of various stone
buildings including a three storey barn, two
storey barn, stone walled enclosure, well house,
bake house, dairy, coach house and stables.
Mr Butcher said workmen had nearly
finished strengthening and upgrading the
walls and roof sections to meet Australian
standards, the slabs and some extra footings
had been installed in the main buildings,
most of the services had been installed and
work was starting on the internal fittings.
Given the property’s age, Mr Butcher said the
barns were in fairly good condition.
Work is under way to restore the heritage-listed Morialta Barns at Norton Summit to create a private
home and tourist accommodation. Scaffolding was erected late last year with the first stage expected
to be finished by March.
By Genevieve Cooper
The first steps towards
kick starting a $310,000,
joint-funded project to
develop Mt Torrens’ only
public park have been
given the green light by
the Adelaide Hills Council.
The five stage, three-year,
aims to build toilets, an
archive room and shade
pergola beside the heritage
listed Mt Torrens Coach
House and to landscape the
surrounding park so it can
be used as a community
However, the site’s master
plan is contingent on the
council obtaining $85,000
in State Government open
space grants for the critical
first two stages which would
deliver the public toilets and
If successful, the council will
contribute $62,000 over two
financial years as “matched
funding” with the Mt Torrens
$21,200 via in-kind labor and
The other stages would
be done in future years,
dependent on successful
Ross Leckie from the
Mt Torrens and District
lobbied the council to go
ahead with a staged option
when he spoke at a public
He said members were
puzzled by the overall
$309,725 price tag because
“we’re certain it can be done
for well under that”.
community support for this
project to go ahead,” he said.
“I’d like the council to
remember this is the only
public-owned land in Mt
“... Mt Torrens is the only
heritage listed town in the
Adelaide Hills and for that
reason we believe it deserves
some special attention.”
However, during the debate
concerns about spending so
much money in a small town.
Cr Jan-Claire Wisdom said
the project was “fantastic”
but she couldn’t support
spending $310,000 in one
town when much smaller
amounts for similar projects
in other towns were not
endorsed by elected members.
“It’s a matter of equity,”
she said. Deputy Mayor Jan
Loveday said reference was
made to $400,000 being spent
on the playground reserve in
Bridgewater, which was joint
funded with the Government,
but that town had 4000
residents compared to only
348 in Mt Torrens.
“I think it’s too much
money going in one direction
and I can’t agree to this
distribution,” she said.
The project was approved
nine votes to two.
Council ‘yes’ to $310,000 park project
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