Cheesman residence, 9 St Andrews Tce, Willunga

The Cheesman residence (now called Ty Garth) was built of local stone and slate in the early 1850s as a symmetrical cottage. William Cheesman was a tailor who emigrated to SA in April 1849 on the barque John Mitchell with his wife Frances (née Uren) and 6 young children aged from 3 to 11 years. William and his family lived here from 1853 to 1877.

In July 1850 William was appointed as the first Bailiff to the newly established Willunga Court that held hearings in the Bush Inn. It is said that William Cheesman when on Court duties rode around the district on his horse “Black Bess” a famous jumper of hedges and fences. William also acted as a spare coach driver when needed. William was a staunch member of the Wesleyan Methodist congregation and he is said to have introduced football to the colony of South Australia – he taught the young men of the district how to play, using a round football he brought with him from England.

When Frances died in 1871 her well-attended funeral service reflected the esteem in which she was held. William Cheesman died in 1876, aged 65 years, and is buried in the Willunga Methodist cemetery together with his wife Frances and four of their children.

The house was sold by William’s heirs to Richard Nottle in 1880. The house has been extended and added to in both the 1880s and then the 1980s.

This building is on the City of Onkaparinga’s local heritage list (SA Heritage Places database #5500)

References:

Wesleyan Cemetery, Wesleyan Church,
Ruth Baxendale & Faye Lush Willunga Walks 2010 (1989)

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