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The Property

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Narmbool was first settled in 1839. The property was leased until the early 1850s, when the Governor allowed squatters the first opportunity to purchase 640 acres (1 square mile).

This granting of Freehold was a significant change, encouraging Narmbool’s owners to build permanent structures of stone rather than simple timber and bark huts. The small, 2-room bluestone cottage adjacent to The Garden Room is the oldest building on-site.

Over the years, the freehold of Narmbool increased. Nevertheless, the homestead was a timber residence, until around 1887, when Herbert Austin enlarged the house by adding a substantial bluestone front and a separate billiard room.

Recent History and Developments

Today, Narmbool is a 2,000-hectare property, carrying approximately 12,000 adult sheep - Merino (for breeding) and Crossbred (for prime lambs). The property is also home to koalas, kangaroos, wallabies, echidnas and platypuses.

The current farm manager has been with Narmbool since 1980 and has made major contributions to the development of the farm and the protection of the environment. These have included a strong program of tree planting to reduce erosion and provide protection for sheep.