Monday, April 5, 2010

The Schoolhouse, Woodbyne, Berry

Now it seems that once you start looking for them, old re-worked schoolhouses are everywhere. I thought it would be remiss of me not to post one of the more lovely conversions, the Woodbyne Guesthouse in my own neighbourhood at Jaspers Brush near Berry.
Twenty years ago, Woodbyne was just a couple of old abandoned weatherboard school buildings in a fairly bare paddock by the highway when the very talented designers John Pegrum and Dayne Van Bree bought them. This, I might add, was the first in a number of stylish properties they have renovated or built in the area, some of which I have been lucky enough to photograph for the glossies. More on that later...
From what I have heard, the boys toiled in the garden for many years to build it up from a bare paddock to the established series of avenues and garden rooms it has today. They painted the old buildings white and made guest rooms around a courtyard. They sold it a while back and moved onto their next project.
One lesson I have learned from them is that nothing exceptional is created without dedication, determination and a large dose of inspiration.


  1. How coincidental - I was just there on the weekend! The current owners have built on the work of John and Dayne at this oasis of country charm. There is a tree on the property that may well be Enid Blyton's Magic Faraway Tree - broad, strong branches climbing up and up to - who knows where?
    And, yes, the schoolhouse is simply divine. It's a magical place

  2. The third image opens up a perfect inspiration! Thank you for this idea.



  3. Thankyou for sharing ! I always enjoy images I havent seen before especially the courtyards. As I was originally from Bowral I do miss at times the wonderful cold climate gardens.

  4. What an inspiring post. The pivet garden with the roses is wonderful.

  5. What a beautiful piece of land...and the back yard dining area, I'm in heaven! I want to move right in : )
    xo katie

  6. I was just wondering if this is Berry, NSW and it is! My parents' friends have the most gorgeous holiday cottages in the centre of Kangaroo Valley which I frequent. Such a gorgeous part of the world!

    Nice blog btw :-)

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  8. I love Woodbyne so much, I got married there! And to this day, people ask if we named our son "Jasper" because of the Jasper's Brush thing (we didn't)...
    Thoroughly enjoying your blog, Catherine (and your work!).