1830s homestead outside of Hobart listed for $1.7m

by AF

Cleburne Estate, Risdon, Tasmania
Offers around $1.7 million

Cleburne is a 1830s heritage-listed homestead located just 15 minutes from Hobart’s CBD. It was built around the 1830s – 1840s for Richard Cleburne and was originally called “Mount Direction” and later referred to as “Cleburne.”

The estate was described by the Australian Heritage Council as:

“An early example of a homestead with outbuildings in a prominent riverside setting. The homestead is in the regency style with the hipped roof carried over the verandah, which has French windows and other characteristics of that style.”

The property is on 4.62 acres and includes the original homestead, the cottage which was thought to have been divided into two separate dwellings and possibly occupied by servants, the barn, bakehouse, stables and outhouse. The barn is considered an exceptional example of early Colonial stone architecture.

“Mt. Direction Homestead is representative of the essential Australian homestead colonial farm from the first decades of settlement. Commenced in 1825, it is long, low slung and graceful, owing as much to the architecture of Colonial India and Cape Town as Tasmania. Removed from the cares of town and once isolated by the Derwent River, it set itself up within twenty years of settlement as a contained and self-sufficient response to the wilderness. Mt. Direction homestead evolved during the 1830s and 1840s from the standard Georgian four squares with attics above, gun barrel hall down the middle floor plan, to receive the polite distinction of a ball room, with separate entry from the rear courtyard….” – Architectural historian Warwick Oakman, 2004.

A an unsigned and undated watercolor of the house, thought to be painted in 1900. – W.L. Crowther Library.

In 1904, the Cleburne’s hosted the vice-regal party from the Centenary celebrations including the Admiral, the Federal Judges, Ministers of the State.

It appears that the grounds of the estate were once open to the public, but an announcement in The Mercury in 1909 seemed to indicate that the public were no longer welcome:

“So much damage has been done of late to the property at Mount Direction owned by E. and L. Cleburne, that they notify in future it will not be open to picnic parties without their permission.” – The Mercury, 16 April, 1909.

In the 1980s there were plans to demolish the buildings to make way for the Bowen Bridge. Luckily, there was strong opposition and the buildings were saved.

The property has a total of 7 bedrooms and the owners currently run a 5-room B&B. The owners worked under the supervision of Heritage Tasmania to convert the place into a B&B (see website here). They also stored original stones, timber and fittings for posterity.

Heritage Listings

  • Classified listing on the National Trust Register
  • Listed in the Register of the National Estate by the Australian Heritage Council.


1036 East Derwent Highway, Risdon, Tasmania
5 mins by car to the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA)
15 mins by car to Hobart’s CBD

Listing information and images from Realestate.com.au