Wednesday, 15 July, 2020

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Queensland’s most viewed home going to auction

The historic Woodford House at Sandgate is the most viewed house going to auction on Saturday.

THE most viewed property going to auction in Queensland this weekend was built for one of Sandgate’s pioneering families.

Bill Verney was a well-known trader in the early 1900s, and a legend among neighbourhood kids who believed he had acquired a cannon among other collectables.

The house at 2 Rainbow Street, Sandgate which Bill and Lillie Verney lived in.

He had Woodford House at Sandgate built as his family home in 1910. In 2003 the Verney family sold the property to Scott and Vanessa Naumann and at 2.30pm on Saturday, 2 Rainbow Street, could be welcoming its third owner in 109 years.

The restored bathroom.

The one-inch thick coloured glass window on the front doors was recycled from a glass topped barrel used by Queensland Meat Exporters to send corn beef to an exhibition in England.

Mr Verney had it silvered and printed with the words ‘Woodford House’.

Original stained glass and the coloured glass window.

And timber used in the home was sourced from local mills, including the Woodford SawMill that Mr Verney bought and after which he named his house.


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Pam Verney was raised at Woodford House and is now president of the Sandgate Historical Society. She said her grandfather was a character.


Sandgate Historical Society president, Pam Verney. Picture: Chris Higgins.

“He was a little man but he was a wheeler and dealer,” she said.

A painting of Woodford House on the cover of Pam Verney’s written history: A Collection of Verney Street Memories, which she wrote in December, 2000.

In her written family history she recalls how her grandfather became very good friends with the manager of the Nambour Sugar Mill who was a racing man. He used his racing winnings to buy timber to build cottages around Sandgate.

He also built the Billard Room at 73 Rainbow Street which has also been listed for sale and is currently under contract.

“My father was born on the veranda of our house,” Pam Verney said. “Sandgate was well known for his maternity hospital and midwives so someone probably came to the house.”

The main bedroom.

Mr Naumann said it had been a privilege to raise his own family here as the second owners of the property.
“Having worked on Queenslanders all my life, it was great to have one of my own.”

He said the three-bedroom cottage with 3.2m ceilings and an original shed would be perfect for someone who valued old-school workmanship and history.

This piece of Sandgate history is for sale.

“Not just its history but their own history,” he said. “If you look into that old shed, it’s a blank canvas, it’s like a second dwelling that’s half the size of the home.”

The veranda extends around two sides of the home and an inground swimming pool has been added.

The new outdoor area and inground swimming pool.

There is a spacious master bedroom with a two-way bathroom.

A large kitchen with plenty of storage leads to the dining and lounge area.

The restored kitchen has modern appliances and ample storage space.

“We never wanted to build in underneath, we put in timber stumps around the outside and kept its character. We’ve done up the kitchen and the bathroom and kept that old look.”

Catherine O’Keefe of Ray White Redcliffe will take the property to auction on October 5 at 2.30pm.