Donald Bradman’s childhood home hits the market


The childhood home of Australia’s greatest ever sportsperson, Sir Donald Bradman, is on the market after a meticulous restoration.

Bradman, renowned for his near-perfect performances on the cricket field, stands out as Australia’s most celebrated sports figure, having played 52 test matches to make 6996 runs, at an average of 99.9.

And it was at this home, at 52 Shepherd St, Bowral, where he is said to have refined his cricketing ability.

“Don Bradman lived at Shepherd Street between the ages of three and fifteen,” the Drew Lindsay Sotheby’s International listing description reads.

“Here, he developed his phenomenal cricketing skills by throwing a golf ball at the base of a tank stand and hitting the golf ball with a small cricket stump. 

“Arguably, it is here where his status as the world’s best batsman was born.”

Seventeen years ago, cricket enthusiast Andrew Leeming and his wife, Erica, discovered the property at 52 Shepherd St, Bowral, and decided to restore it.

“I told Erica there’s an interesting property here, it’s a renovation, but if you think it’s worth doing we could do something good for cricket, something good for the country, and create a lovely home to live in,” Mr Leeming told realestate.com.au.

The home, which is best known for the water tank that Bradman famously used to hone his technique, took the Leemings three years to renovate, with the job undertaken by Australia’s most decorated heritage architectural firm, Clive Lucas Stapleton and Partners. 

“The brief: restore the home to its late 19th-century glory in meticulous, thoroughly researched detail while adding hidden, luxurious modern comforts,” the listing said.

The four-bedroom, two-bathroom period home is the winner of the National Trust Award for Conservation and Heritage, with the house restoration paired with a delightful cottage garden designed by landscape heritage specialist Charlotte Webb.

Other features of the home include 12-foot ceilings, original fireplaces that have been invisibly converted to gas heating and a quaint kitchen that’s a joy to cook in with a gas cooktop, Ilve oven, integrated double dish-drawer dishwasher, two separate sinks, high-end fittings and fixtures and plenty of hidden storage. 

“The home in its current iteration is a homage to the Bradman family’s life: the owner says the restoration, from the exterior colouring to the interior décor, fixtures and fittings, is 99.94% accurate (the batting average of Sir Donald),” the listing description says. 

“From the period-correct Metters cast iron stove down to the tiniest details around restoration and replication of the beaded fascia boards, pressed metal ventilators and boarded soffit eaves – original features have been returned. 

“And yet, this is a home for the 21st Century: engineers have updated the drainage systems and modern conveniences in the property, include all new wiring and cabling for internet, Foxtel, full security system, under-floor ducted and zoned reverse-cycle air-conditioning and heated towel rails and floors in the bathrooms.”

The Drew Lindsay Sotheby’s International Realty listing says the property will be auctioned, unless sold prior, but does not list a date, while the realestate.com.au story lists a price of $3 million. 



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