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Ballachulish is an elegant timber Queenslander that was built around 1908 for Joseph and Elizabeth Ann Rice. With views to the north towards Brisbane, Ballachulish is the most elevated of three, highly decorated Federation-era houses at the Queen’s Park end of Blackstone Road.

Considered a well-preserved example of its early 1900s construction period, Ballachulish features the short ridge roof and stepped convex verandah roof associated with the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Other features that identify it with the Federation era are the flying gables with fretwork decoration, private flanking verandahs, three rail dowel balustrading, fretwork verandah brackets and convex tin and timber hood coverings, again with fretwork.

First owner Joseph Rice came from a pioneering grazing family at Redbank Plains. He later worked as overseer and foreman of works of the Purga Shire Council before opening a store in Newtown. Elizabeth Ann Rice, formerly Williams, arrived in Queensland as a child from Beaufort in Wales with her family aboard the Saldanha in the early 1860s. They gave this house its original name of Beaufort Villa.

Following the death of Joseph in 1916, Elizabeth Ann Rice continued to live at Beaufort Villa. Until her death in 1934 she was an active worker for the Methodist Church with a keen interest in political matters. Other Rice family members lived in the residence until 1949, when the house was sold and converted subsequently into flats.

In 1989, the alterations made to convert the house into flats were reversed. Jennifer and Dr Timothy Rush purchased the residence in August 2000, naming it Ballachulish after a favourite spot in Scotland. It has been restored, renovated and extended. With the 2007 purchase of the adjoining block they have been able to create a formal garden and large back yard for their family.


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