Architecture, Heritage Homes, heritage lost, Marrickville

Heritage Lost: Myrtle Grove

This post is not about a house that has been destroyed, demolished or neglected. Like Chevy Chase, this house has been changed so much that it’s heritage value has been lost.

However, as a home it very much has historical significance to the Marrickville area.

This post started with an enquiry from someone in Myrtle Street wanting to know how old their home was. They’ve been told it’s Marrickville’s oldest structure and that Marrickville’s first Mayor lived there. Look for my other post that talks about how I solved this question.

In my search I found a picture of James Meek and his family at their residence Myrtle Grove at 12 High Street, Marrickville.

Image Source: Marrickville Image Library

This house, still exists. The Meek’s descendants have a family tree on where they have a lot of information about the family and some pictures of the family.

They remind us that Myrtle Grove stood on a hill with magnificent views over the whole of the Sydney district – from the Blue Mountains to the city – to Botany Bay. When first built, the only other near building in sight was St Peters Church on the Cooks River Road.

Image Source:

22 years later Myrtle Grove still stands, a mere shadow of its former self.

Aluminium windows, closed in verandahs and styling that is unsympathetic to heritage. We will remember this house as the home of James Meek and one of the oldest buildings in Marrickville. Let us all remember that beauty is only skin deep .. and somewhere under this ugly exterior is a glorious villa!

Image Source: The Home Page

9 thoughts on “Heritage Lost: Myrtle Grove”

  1. I am a decent of the original family of the Meeks from Scotland, its so fascinating to read about my own family’s heritage. I’d love to know so much more about where the lines of descendants go.


    1. Hello Mercedes, we are pleased to be able to tell some of the stories about the Meek family. If you seek more information contact the Inner West Library and History Services at the Marrickville Library. They have more information and even have the wedding dress of Margaret Meek who married Henry Braddock in 1903.


      1. Hi there I would like a lot more info on my family history as I know myrtle Grove was my great grandfathers home and there is a lot I have been told about my family history but there are a lot of missing peices


  2. Hi – I am a descendent of James Scotch Meek & Ann Tunnie – their son James Jnr is my grandmother’s(Christina Dorothy Schwebel married Norman Betland) grandfather. James Jnr married Harriett Jemima Fairbairn – had 10 children – 9 girls & 1 boy – the eldest girl Jessie (married George Schwebel) is Christina’s mother. I am doing the never ending search for family history now and have relatives still living in the Marrickville area where the Schwebel’s had the quarry. Cheers, Sue Cross (nee Betland)


    1. I’ve have just been told the man u speak of James Scotch Meek was my granfathers father (my great grandfather) the girls you speak of were my great grandfathers aunties


    1. Hi Mercedes – sorry it’s take me a while to respond. I only get to doing the family history on weekends as I work full time. Now I’m in COVID lockdown I thought it would be the perfect time to spend time on research 🙂


  3. I too am a great grandaughter of Elizabeth Meek. Its fabulous seeing these stories I have old portrait photographs maybe of the Meeks they have no name on them though, love to see if someone might recognise a person related.


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