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Belmont Avenue

This grand Victorian mansion, built in the 1890's, was the home of Sir William Kerr prominent Kew citizen and Mayor from 1911 to 1914. It has a B listing in the Kew Heritage Study.

Named "Trennant" the house remained in the Kerr family till the 1970's when it was sold to the Education Department and became part of the Glen Donald School for the Deaf, situated in nearby Marshall Avenue.

The grand home was converted into the John Cannon Hostel and was used by the school for respite care for the families of deaf children. The current owners bought the property in 1993 and shortly after employed conservation architects, Allom, Lovell and Associates to undertake major renovation and restoration works to restore the house to its original grandeur.

The owner conducted an enormous amount of her own research to assist in the process of replicating original colours, fixtures and fittings. The lights in the formal rooms downstairs have all been remade with gas levers and chains, the fireplaces restored in granite or marble to their original state and the stained glass restored.

The owner also located the grand daughter of the Sir William Kerr, who attended Ruyton Girls' School, and was able to share many memories and photos of the former home and help in the restoration process.

Architect, Kai Chen designed the recently added modern section of the house. Efforts were made to blend the old with the new without destroying the original character. For example, the paint colour in the stainless steel kitchen is the same colour as that featured in the master bedroom. The stained glass windows feature a design by avant-garde American architect, Frank Lloyd Wright.

Garden expert, John Patrick, carried out the landscape design work. A family friendly environment was important so the plantings enable the children to play football and cricket but provide screening where necessary. Prominent trees include a jacaranda overlooking the pool, native Lilly Pillies and a magnificent gum tree near the street. A herb garden is also located on the property.