The Castle by Margaret O’Toole

Margaret has painted in water-colour one man’s dream not realised.

The Castle

The Castle Buff Point This is a photograph of the building, derelict, deserted and rejected by the building surveyors at the local council.

The story goes, that a young doctor wanted to build a house overlooking a beautiful lake. The plan was that house was to be perched on a high point overlooking the lake. So he purchased this land.

Over the years and with every spare moment, he would plan, and every weekend and holiday time bring building materials to the site.

This was at a time before any other houses were in the area and the story goes that he would bring these materials by wheel barrow from one of the local railway stations.

The thing is he chose to take the materials from Tuggerah station instead of the closer Wyong station. We can only speculate how he got the materials to the house.

There used to be a small fairy running the lakes many years ago and it used to take passengers from a small jetty on the lake about 1 kilometer from the Tuggerah station to the The Entrance, a rather original name for a town perched on the eastern and seaward side of the lakes near the entrance in the lakes to the sea.

We can only assume that this intrepid doctor would trundle the material to the jetty in his wheel barrow and hire the fairy boat to take these material up the large Tuggerah Lake to a smaller lake to the north, Budgewoi Lake, being the middle lake of the three lake system.

Once there the doctor would need to carry, several bricks at a time or bags of cement up the steep hill to the site of the house.

Year after year he must have worked to build this brick and concrete edifice.

But the story gets very sad. The dream house was for him to share with his wife, but she died, leaving him an elderly man with a half-finished house.

No-one is sure whether he is still alive in 2013 or whether there is an heir to the property. It just lays derelict. In recent years as the remote location has become a regular suburb or locality on the shores of the lake, school children have started to play on the site, so the local council has, in the interest of safety, erected potable fencing around the site, with an order that the house can never be completed because council standards have not been followed even though these standards were formulated years after the house was started.

The end result will be that if the property is ever to be developed this peace of the Central Coasts of New South Wales’ history will be pulled down and lost forever.


by David Holland