Basildene Manor Stands Proud

Gorgeous Basildene Manor is turning 101 years old in 2013, almost the same age as Margaret River town. In was built in 1912 as a homestead for William “Percy” Willmott’s family, the original owners of the property.

The news article “Classic home stands proud” talks about the history of Basildene Manor. It says the following about Willmott: “Born in England, he served in the merchant navy before, in 1887, travelling with his younger brother Frank to Western Australia. They arrived in Albany, stayed for 10 days and sailed off again to Vasse. Soon they were employed by the Brockman family, near Pemberton, and in time married the two eldest Brockman daughters.”

Willmott earned a small amount teaching local boys, and his house at Vasse, known as The Hermitage, was constructed. His family moved to the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse in Augusta, where Willmott worked as a lighthouse keeper and displayed great passion for photography.

In 1910, they relocated to a shanty in Yalgardup, a house made from compressed kerosene tins brought from the lighthouse.

Following a six-month trip to England, the family returned to Basildene, both residence and visit made possible by funding from Willmott’s sister Henrietta.

Willmott desired a magnificent house resembling one of his relatives’ imposing country estate in England.

Granite was quarried onsite and the finest chosen to construct the walls. Local jarrah was used inside to design the floors, staircases, balustrades, main hall and central gallery.

Today, Basildene Manor is still standing proud and visitors from all across the globe are attracted to its unique charm combining glimpses of history from a past era with a contemporary style. Located only two minutes’ drive from the lively Margaret River township and near internationally renowned wineries, the manor offers quality 4.5 star accommodation.

The old oak tree standing at the front of the property supposedly came from an acorn brought from the grounds of the Buckingham Palace. Willmott died in the year 1920 and became the first person to be buried in the Margaret River Cemetery- for which he had been campaigning for years.

Basildene Manor was classified as a significant heritage building by the National Trust of Australia in 1978. The manor remained under the ownership of the Willmotts until it was sold in the year 1981.

To find out more about Basildene Manor, please check out their website

About Benji

I am married and live on a farm near Margaret River with my wife, daughter and son. I set up The Margaret River Guide to assist people coming to Margaret River Western Australia to easily find what they are looking for. I also wanted to allow people to find activities they did not know about and to be able to openly comment on/ review businesses.

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