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"Lowan" in KEW, VICTORIA was built in about 1880 by entrepreneur Annie Smith as a speculative investment, but she was not able to sell the property. It was known as "Clarence" and later "Lowestoft" and there were several inhabitants until it became a girls' school in 1895 - known as "Clarence Ladies College". In 1906 the property fell into the hands of the morgagee company who put their Chairman into it - where he remained until it was sold freehold in 1917 to Kate and James Menzies - the parents of Australia's most remembered Prime Minister Robert Gordon Menzies. James Menzies was the Victoran MLA for LOWAN  - and they gave the house the new name "LOWAN".

As the Menzies children were already nearing or in adulthood, the house was broken into 5 flats - 4 in the main house and 1 in a building out the back - and the children and parents occupied those flats. The parents died in the 1940s, and the house was sold to investors but one of the children stayed there until about 1974 as a tenant.

"Lowan" changed hands again in about 1969, and the property remained as flats until 1984 when Rodney and Fiona Reynolds purchased the property and returned the building to a single dwelling - starting a renovation project which continues to the present day.

One would think that there is plenty of room in "Lowan" for all the activites associated with Rochester Engineering, but this is a good example of activities growing to fill a little more than the total available space.

Contact Rod at rod-reynolds@outlook.com(send email)