Home' LOTL : MarApril16 Contents 29
lotl.com • Lesbians On The Loose Magazine
ucy is my new sweetheart. She is curvy, has strong legs, a great head of
hair and good teeth. It’s early, rain has just set in, and I sneak up to her.
I know she is hungry, and a soft kiss confirms her appreciation when I
My wife Tanya and I have taken a much-needed small vacation. Kim and
Pauline are friends from years back and run and own Blair Athol, a heritage-listed
guesthouse, on the outskirts of Inverell, NSW.
Late on New Year’s Day, we catch a flight to Armidale to avoid an eight hour
drive from Sydney. The Australian country, windy roads and open fields make me
feel instantly at home.
If you love Downton Abbey, your imagination will explode in this 1904 English
Mansion. There is plenty of history hidden between these walls, and the small
cemetery on the property’s entrance guides you through family dynamics like an
open book .
The imposing Federation-style home, designed by architect Herbert Ross, was
completed in 1904, including state-of-the-art early 20th century accoutrements,
such as a butler and housemaid call system, still visible today. Florence Cooper’s
mother owned the property from the late 1890’s, when it was called ‘Pinehurst.’
It was sold to her son-in-law Theophilus Cooper, who demolished the original
house and built the current manor house. The Coopers stayed on for another
three generations and sold Blair Athol Estate in 1938. His four granddaughters
were all born upstairs, in the original Master Suite.
The lavish décor and generous rooms, replete with exquisite ornate ceilings
and plaster mouldings, ensured that the resident family would be luxuriously
accommodated. That ethos has continued into this century. Laced with the
history of the original family, including the last resting places of Florence and
Theodore Cooper, the garden and surrounds add another dimension to an
overnight visit, or, much to be recommended - a longer, more relaxing stay - just
to try and peel back some of the many layers of this fascinating country estate.
The majestic trees in The Grove, some of which began life in Kew Gardens,
London, way back in the 1860’s, lead the way up to the mansion. The garden pre-
dates the manor house by around 40 years. At every turn there is something for
the inquisitive garden enthusiast or casual onlooker to feast upon.
The outbuildings comprise a gardener’s cottage, original stables, the coach
house (now offered as accommodation) and various buildings that support the
estate. If the weather is nice, guests can enjoy a game of tennis or play outdoor
chess. A walk in the garden is often accompanied by one of the friendly dogs
that are Blair Athol’s ‘tour guides.’
Kim and Pauline have held many lesbian weddings and hosted movie nights
in their outdoor cinema showing All About E, Orange Is The New Black or The L
Word under a beautiful night sky.
Our friends are as conscious in the food they provide and cook as they are in
preserving this beautiful home and its estate. Most of the ingredients are grown
or produced on the estate to create a truly organic feast, from freshly collected
eggs to homemade pasta with organic flour.
The outdoor chessboard and the tennis court are perfectly maintained and
the lawns and hedges are the owners’ pride, crowned by majestic pine trees
which light up at night with thousands of little lights that truly transfer you to
In 2013, this bliss was almost destroyed by flying bat colonies that saw Kim
and Pauline not only fight 100,000 flying bats - damaging trees that had been
growing for more than 150 years – but be told by The Office of Environment
and Heritage that little could be done to remove the colonies since they were a
“It literally looked like someone had dropped napalm around the homestead.
Branches were laying on the ground and there was seemingly nothing that could
be done,” said Kim.
Over 10,000 signatures were collected (3000 from Inverell alone) to push for
legislation changes, which finally came into place in early 2014 with the State
government giving councils the authority and approvals that would help them
“move on” camps of flying foxes where they had become an environmental and
health hazard in residential areas.
Today, you see nothing of this trouble: Lucy gallops around her paddock,
the trees are lined with thousand of little lights and the idyllic outdoor cinema
currently screens All About E.
More Info: blairatholestate.com.au
Links Archive Mardi Gras MayJune 2016 Navigation Previous Page Next Page