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Historical home on market for first time in 50 years

Denise Carroll pictured on the deck to her house which is now up for auction.
Denise Carroll pictured on the deck to her house which is now up for auction. Chris Ison ROK100217chouse1

IF THE walls of 402 Horner St, Koongal home could talk, they would tell a century-old tale of happiness.

With original 110-year-old floorboards from its days as a convent still standing, the seven bedroom house became the beloved home of Denise and Pat Carroll.

That was back in 1968, when the Carrolls with six of their 11 children born, moved in.

It was a home of history, parties, weddings, youth groups... a real hive of activity.

"We raised 11 kids here and plenty of others. We would have boarders stay, cousins stay, it was the place to be,” Denise, now 80, recalled.

"I had friends in this neighbourhood who had little kids at the same time, so it was a meeting place for us and a baby sitting centre.

"They were all good kids though, they all had their own little part of the house they could call their own. We divided up the rooms so everyone had space.

"When we first moved in their were rooms everywhere, the kids were so little they would get lost.

"As they got older and went to high school there would be so many parties here, four weddings, 80ths, 60ths, 18ths, 21sts. It has seen lots of happy times.”

Denise Carroll pictured on the deck to her house which is now up for acution.
Denise Carroll pictured on the deck to her house which is now up for acution. Chris Ison ROK100217chouse2

While sections of the home have been removed, they found new life elsewhere. Namely the boarding dormitory for the convent is now the Bouldercombe Dance Hall.

Often described as a peaceful, comfortable, homely place, the Carrolls were continually adding to it, bit by bit.

Walls were demolished in 1970, a garage added a decade later. The house was cladded in the 90s, a new kitchen and verandah completed in 96.

More recently the house was re-painted inside and out and the verandah was re-decked.

"We have been renovating it all our lives. In the beginning we didn't have much money so it was just little things, then it grew and grew,” she said.

"My favourite place in the house would be the verandah in the afternoon, in the shade overlooking the football fields, it is lovely.”

Seven of Denise Carroll's children who grew up in the Koongal family home.
Seven of Denise Carroll's children who grew up in the Koongal family home.

With large grounds covered with trees to climb, the 11 children and friends had ample fun. Helen Carroll said it was a place of laughter and happy memories.

"Personally, my favourite memory is sliding down the hallway in socks after we had spread talcum powder everywhere,” she reminisced.

"That, and the lego cities we would build on the back verandah... playing in the dirt either under the plum tree or the blue gravel driveway.”

Denise Carroll raised her 11 children the Koongal home which is now up for auction.
Denise Carroll raised her 11 children the Koongal home which is now up for auction. Chris Ison ROK100217chouse4

Sadly, the house became too large for the now widowed Denise to manage alone and will reluctantly hand over the keys later this month.

The 4288sqm package will go under the hammer on February 25.

Denise had one wish - it go to a family similar to her own.

"I do hope a family can get it. That would be nice, especially for another 50 years. That would be lovely.”



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