The Fascinating History of Beleura House
The popular Retirement Communities Australia Beleura Village takes its name from that of a heritage home located not far from the village on the Mornington Peninsula. Beleura House is an Italianate mansion with a long and interesting history that dates back to the 1800s. The house is now a popular Mornington tourist attraction, and local history resource. The history of Beleura House Beleura House was built in 1863 by James Butchart, who arrived in Australia from Scotland in 1842. Built in the Italian style, the mansion was described as “the finest in the colony” when it was sold after his death to Charles Edward Bright. Bright later married the daughter of Sir John Manners-Sutton, who was the Governor of Victoria from 1866 to1873. For years, the home became the unofficial summer retreat for the governor and his family, before changing hands a number of times. Owned by a series of wealthy and influential families over the years, Beleura eventually ended up in the hands of Sir George Tallis in 1916. Sir George was the first owner to add land to the property, buying 2,000 acres of the surrounding area as farmland. Sir George kept the house and property until his death in 1948. The house then passed to his youngest son John Tallis, who bequeathed it to the people of Victoria upon his own death.
Beleura House today Popular with tourists and locals alike, this unique home gives visitors a rare insight into life in previous times. It contains a fascinating collection of historical artefacts, from clothing to theatre memorabilia and art. It became a museum in 2004, in line with the wishes of John Tallis, and since then it has been open to the public and welcomes visitors as if they were guests. Many of the photographs and items on show are displayed in the museum room, which was opened in December 2007.
Visits are by appointment only, and visitors are picked up from a number of designated points around Mornington. When they arrive at Beleura, visitors are welcomed with morning tea, before a guided tour provides a unique glimpse into the colourful lifestyles of the often powerful and well-known families who have owned Beleura House over the years. Visitors are also treated to a light lunch as part of the tour. Beleura has an eclectic collection of items on display, including furniture, photographs, domestic goods, and household paraphernalia which has immense historical value.
As well as the house, there are substantial gardens, which have been well preserved and maintained over the years. The most recent owner, John Tallis, built a romantic Italian garden over the original sunken garden, and this gives the house added appeal and visitors the opportunity to stroll through and enjoy the peaceful setting.
Whether visitors are interested in history or just want to enjoy a day out with a bit of a difference, this amazing house is well worth a visit. Beleura House is a great place to take visiting families, and residents at Beleura Village in Mornington can enjoy the benefits of having a living piece of history right on their doorstep.