William Purcell, Robert Alexander Love, Tess Lawrence, Robert Trimbole, Angela Nuttal...more, Stuart Daylesford, Ann-Marie Presland, Ellis Nuttal, Anthony Cant, James Wyatt
Islay House, the 1860s Woodend relic, sells in Tess Lawrence mortgagee disposal
Islay House, Woodend's most recognised heritage landmark, has been sold by its mortgagee-in-possession, the National Australia Bank on its third marketing attempt.
It sold for more than its advertised $550,000 reserve price through Keating Real Estate after its asking price was cut from its previous $694,000 expectations.
It sat among the rustic regional Victoria property portfolio of the bankrupted Tess Lawrence, the former Flinders and Spencer Street newspaper firebrand who despite the sales continues her stoush with her lender.
Source: Independent Australia
Lawrence earlier this year spray-painted the Woodend property in the lead-up to its initial mortgagee auction in protest to what she claimed was an unfair repossession following a “preposterous concoction of debt” and inadequate notification of the proceedings against her. After its second scheduled auction date the agents noted the property had drawn over 670 enquiries, with about 375 inspections and 37 requests for contracts from prospective purchasers prior to the unsuccessful auction.
An affidavit of bank officer James Wyatt sworn September 2011 gave the quantum of NAB’s total money claim against Lawrence as $3,413,316.It dated back to an originating 2001 flexiplus mortgage facility National Bank choice package of $434,000, which by 2006 was re-written to have a $3,084,000 limit.
The NAB lent across five properties, which had been accumulated over a nine-year period from 1992, costing $1.28 million.
Islay House, the landmark 1860s High Street, Woodend property, which Lawrence had planned to restore as the subject of a reality TV series, sits on what was the highway running from Melbourne to the goldfields. Set on 2,300 square metres it last traded at $360,000 in 2001.
"Before Woodend was by-passed Islay House was probably the most recognised house between Melbourne and Mildura," its marketing said.
The other Lawrence properties were on Leggatt Street, Daylesford, her home at Herbert Street, Northcote, and two properties on Bannerman Street, Bendigo, including Loughmoe House (pictured above), the 1870s grand colonial residence designed by period architect Robert Alexander Love for William Purcell. The solid stone Bendigo hilltop estate also known as Carlisle, Selb Villa and Leigh Lodge, sits on 1,012-square-metre holding that sold last month through Tweed Sutherland First National Bendigo. Its price is undisclosed. It cost Lawrence $265,000 in 1999.
Her neighbouring 1,038-square-metre Bannerman Street property was sold for $305,000 mid-year to Ellis and Angela Nuttal. It had previously traded at $365,000 in 1998. There is a subdivision application currently before Bendigo Council.
The Daylesford country cottage in the lake precinct sold at an undisclosed price earlier this month through Hocking Stuart Daylesford. The timber two-bedroom cottage (pictured above and below) with french doors and a Juliet balcony was set in an established garden of 800 square metres. It cost $140,500 in 1994.
There was also her principle place of residence on 9 Herbert Street, Northcote, from which she was evicted in July this year. It last traded in 1992 at $165,000. It was for sale with offers, to be made in a sealed envelope and delivered to Brace Estate Agents by 5pm, due yesterday. It was often used as a safe house for victims of domestic violence.
Channel 7's Today Tonight reported she hasn't made repayments since November 2007.
In August 2008, NAB served Lawrence with a default notice when the stated sum of $2,727,594.55 was due.
Her bankruptcy trustee is Anthony Cant. Fighting what she's called her "bogus bankruptcy" earlier this year she reported she was compiling evidence for appeals in the Court of Appeal, the Supreme Court of Victoria and the Federal Court of Victoria regarding the bank action and the bankruptcy sequestration arising from the March 2009 McKean Park judgment of $10,793 in the Magistrates’ Court in Victoria against the debtor. However her Federal Court application for an extension of time to appeal from the November 2011 sequestration order made by Justice North in the Federal Court was dismissed in April.
Lawrence has been a high-profile broadcaster and journalist advocate and in recent times a specialist in ethical media services and crisis management and consultant in media strategy.
Lawrence was at the forefront of women's liberation journalism – credited as the first female feature writer to sit equally in the male-dominated newsroom at the Melbourne Herald in the mid-1970s. Her scoops over the decades included her 1987 interview with Robert Trimbole's mistress, Ann-Marie Presland, on the ABC's 7.30 Report.
She is currently contributing editor at large at Independent Australia, a progressive web journal focusing on politics, democracy, the environment, Australian history and Australian identity.
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