Every week when I travel down to site for work I zoom past the Whitby Falls Historic Coach House. Then I zoom past it again on the way back. Each week for the last 18 months I have planned to stop either on the way up or back and take some pictures—before its gone; either blown down in the next storm or burnt down by the next bushfire.
It seems like only a couple of years ago that the ‘coach house’ was operating and you could pop in for a coffee and a muffin (or, these days, a cupcake). It was also used for weddings and wedding receptions, and other parties and general functions.
But not any more.
Although it only seems like a couple of years ago to me the owner of the store at Serpentine—the nearest town to the ‘coach house’— says it is at least ten years, and maybe 15, since the ‘coach house’ was operating.
Well today (Saturday, the 24th of September, or that would be September 24 for my American readers) I made the effort to get my butt out of bed a bit earlier and make a special run up to Serpentine and take some pictures of the Whitby Falls Coach House. I was kind of hoping that I might be able to get into the grounds but that was not possible. Every gate was double padlocked and there was about 50 kilometres of barbed wire threaded through and around the fence with “Danger—No Entry” signs posted about every 15 meters.
So, being a person of high moral fibre and not the type to ignore such signage, I had to be content with taking pictures from the perimeter, which I walked around three times making sure I spotted all ‘the good shots’.
For those that like to know—all pictures were taken in DNG (RAW) format hand-held at ISO 400 using the Pentax 18–135 f3.5/5.6 DA zoom on a Pentax K-5 body. The DNGs were developed using Photoshop Elements 9.
This first shot was basically taken from where I parked the car and would have been the image visitors pulling up in the side car park for a coffee would have seen. You can’t tell from this picture but the gates are padlocked. That sign posted on the ranch-style fence to the right of the entry arch says “DANGER-NO ENTRY”.
Following is a zoomed in shot of the ‘barn’ behind the main house area. It can be seen just off to the left in the picture above.
It seems to me that there was a loft door above the main doors but at some stage it was bricked in and they did not bother removing the door jams (framing) before bricking it in. Sorry about the power line (top right hand corner) but I just could not be bothered cloning it out of the shot.
Next is a shot of an old truck artistically parked in the grounds of the coach house. Presumable this was so it could be used as some kind of backdrop for wedding pictures and such like. Off to left behind the truck there is a pergola and that is featured, from a different angle along the fence, in the next shot.
In the crop of the pergola picture I purposely left in the foreground showing the top of the ranch-style fencing. Even thought it is hopelessly out of focus (focus was on the pergola) you can still see the barbed wire and what looks to me like an electrified wire (because of the insulator you can see to the right). They really do not want people trying to get over this fence and into the grounds.
The pergola is massively overgrown now by the bushes and shrubs around it but in its day it probably ‘saw’ hundreds of weddings and wedding receptions.
The final picture is another of the front of the house but this time taken from the right hand side and featuring some kind of flowering vine that is growing at the front. This vine has obviously not been trimmed or tamed for some time and is growing up under the roof and out from behind the guttering across the top. If anyone knows the name of this lilac coloured flowering vine then feel free to share in a comment.
I have posted larger higher resolution versions of all these images plus six additional pictures of the Whitby Falls Coach House to the Abalook SmugMug gallery. Click on any of the images above to link over to the gallery (or use Ctrl+Click to open the gallery in a new Tab). No password is required for this gallery. To open the best view of an image (size and resolution) then select the image in the SmugMug gallery, hover over the image, and then select Original from the “View Size” options. Each image is either 1000 pixels wide or high (depending on orientation of the image).