Architectural Trail

Ostend Trail

Located at Middle Brighton Baths, the Ostend Trail is 3.9 kilometres with a walking time of 65 minutes. The trail path has gentle undulations.

Following is a description of the properties along the route.

 Ostend Architectural Trail (PDF, 952KB)


St Andrew’s School House
Address: 38 Church St, Brighton (cnr St Andrews St)
Style: Gothic Revival
Architect: Charles Webb
Date: 1857

• Example of Early English Gothical Revival style, built of recycled ironstone from the first St Andrew’s Church.
• Use of locally quarried ironstone is rare.
• Design highlights detailed and symmetrical style of Webb’s institutional buildings.
• E-shape plan was adopted by the Common Schools Board of Education in the 1860s.
• Controversial application to redevelop as restaurant and bar in late 1990s was approved, providing the interior and exterior were retained in original state.
• The building currently operates as a café.


St Andrew’s Church
Address: 266–270 New St, Brighton (cnr Church St)
Style: Gothic Revival, Modernist
Architects: Charles Webb (1857), Louis Williams (1961)
Date: 1857, 1961

• First church designed in 1850 by Charles Laing was demolished six years later to make way for a bigger church and school house.
• Webb designed the new bluestone church in 1857 with fine proportions and skilful detailing.
• In 1886 Lloyd Tayler designed a sandstone addition but most of the church was destroyed by fire in 1961.
• The church community commissioned prolific church architect Louis Williams to design a new building.
• The new building was orientated to integrate the old church with the nave opening onto Church Street.
• East wall features a flamboyant rose window.
• Home to one of the largest organs in Australia, with 3,000 pipes.


St Andrew’s Churchyard Cemetery
Address: New St, Brighton (cnr Church St)
Style: Not Available
Architect: Not Available
Date: 1844–1920s

• A burial ground for the first settlers of the area - many of whom died from tuberculosis, typhoid fever and complications associated with childbirth.
• There are 300 burials listed before 1860, but records thereafter were burnt in the 1961 fire.
• Most burials after 1860 were placed at the Brighton Cemetery, but families with existing tombs at St Andrew’s continued to be buried at the churchyard cemetery.
• One of the few cemeteries attached to a church in Victoria.


Dalton House Fence
Address: 39 Normanby St, Brighton (cnr New St)
Style: Not Available
Architect: None
Date: Unknown

• Graceful late-Victorian mansion with tower hiding behind the large hedge.
• Famous for its fence which the owner, Robert Linton, supposedly made from artillery shells filled with concrete.
• Linton renamed the house Dalton in 1913 after the Scottish village where he was born - however it’s known locally as the Shell House.



Address: 28 Grosvenor St, Brighton
Style: Italianate
Architect: Unknown
Date: 1889

• Substantial two-storey rendered brick Italianate villa.
• Cast iron verandah on two sides terminating with a bay window on the east facing Port Phillip Bay.
• The original ‘widows walk’ on the roof constructed for better views of the Bay and the city, was destroyed in the ‘Brighton Cyclone’ of 1918.
• Served as a residence, guest house and secretarial/dressmaking school.
• Historically important for its association with the Catanach family, Australia’s oldest family jewellers who built and lived in the house for more than a decade.
• House was occupied by the Pascoe family for about 30 years in early 20th Century.



Address: 26 Grosvenor St, Brighton
Style: Italianate
Architect: Unknown
Date: 1889

• Rendered brick villa with slate hipped roof, cast-iron verandah and beautiful big windows.
• Timber shutters slide on rollers, instead of being hinged.
• Front entry door tucked away on the western side would have originally offered views across the Bay.
• Croquet lawn lost when two vacant lots to the west were sold off in the 1930s.
• Stayed true to its original form with only three owners since construction.
• Interior lovingly restored.



Normanby & Esperance
Address: 4–6 Normanby St, Brighton
Style: Italianate
Architect: Unknown
Date: 1890

• One of few terraces built in the Bayside area
• Richly ornamented, rendered brick pair of houses.
• In 1894, Esperance (no. 6) was used as a girls’ school.
• In the early 20th Century, Normanby (no. 4) was the residence of Mrs. Aeneas Gunn, author of "We of the Never Never" (1908) and "The Little Black Princess" (1905).
• Houses are separated by an extended party wall, creating a semi-enclosed verandah with side windows.
• Intricate cast-iron lacework.


Middle Brighton Baths
Address: 251 The Esplanade, Brighton
Style: Moderne, Neo Modern
Architects: Oakley & Parkes (1936), McGauran Giannini Soon (2002)
Date: 1936, 2002

• Established in 1882 and enlarged in 1909 to incorporate enclosed swimming areas for men and women.
• Storm destroyed the baths in 1934 and the new building was redesigned by Oakley & Parkes in 1936.
• Building is symmetrical and has a pronounced horizontal emphasis, with flat roofs concealed behind parapets and clean expanses of face brickwork.
• Oakley & Parkes incorporated more Modernist elements than other architects of the period, including the dominating cubic element of the top floor.
• In 2002, architects McGauran Giannini Soon were commissioned to renovate and design additions - with mixed reviews.


Address: 5 Sandown St, Brighton
Style: Environmental Design
Architects: John Baird, Cuthbert & Partners
Date: 1967

• Striking example of classic 1960s architecture and still in great condition, despite proximity to beach and prevailing elements.
• Understated house offering a view of the Bay and built with attention to detail.
• White painted brickwork, timber joinery and skillion roofs are characteristics of the ‘Sydney School’ style of modernist architecture.
• Compact wings on either side of a two-storey atrium allow light into the centre of the house. Windows feature manually operated vents, allowing controlled ventilation.
• Architect John Baird was commissioned to build three similar houses adjacent to the property, which have since been demolished.



Address: 29 Seacombe Gr, Brighton
Style: Moderne
Architects: IG Anderson
Date: 1934

• Icon along the Brighton foreshore.
• Epitomised the modern lifestyle and aspirations of post-Depression 1930s, with an emphasis on sunlight and fresh air.
• One of the earliest examples of this style of apartment in Victoria, exploiting the curved corner to full effect.
• Each of the nine two-bedroom flats have views of the water and incorporate boatsheds that open onto the foreshore.
• The tower is symbolic of a waterfall and is both curvilinear and sculptural, strengthening the connections between architecture and art.
• Cement-rendered finish originally painted warm yellow, with all balconies open to the sea.
• Finely articulated façade and distinctive tower.



Address: 27 Seacombe Gr, Brighton
Style: Neo Modern
Architect: Nicholas Boschler
Date: 1992

• Large rectangular elements and extensive use of glass represent early example of the move from Post Modern concerns with context and historic references, back to slick machine aesthetic of Modernism.
• Demonstrates complexity of form.
• Composed of rectangular volumes set around a courtyard, with entry via a gravity-defying black slab held up by six posts.
• White tiles throughout, and details such as handle-less doors, demonstrate minimalist aesthetics pioneered by Boschler in the early 1990s.



Address: 14 Seacombe Gr, Brighton
Style: Early 20th C Modern, Arts & Crafts, Stripped Classical
Architect: Wife of Edward L Rohan
Date: 1926

• Built by Edward L Rohan and designed by his wife (female architects were virtually unknown in 1926).
• Nestled among Italianate and other grand mansions, built of brick with sections of unpainted stucco render, and a deep double-level verandah supported on heavy piers.
• Original windows incorporate a quaint geometric pattern
• House appears untouched since construction.
• Intriguing home, unique to Seacombe Grove, with its dark colours and deep shaded verandah, and ivy climbing its walls.
• Named after the Italian city of Padua.


Address: 3 Moule Ave, Brighton
Style: Italianate
Architect: Unknown (likely to be J A B Koch)
Date: 1889

• May have been designed by noted German-born and trained architect J A B Koch, who designed the National Trust property Labassa in Caulfield (1889–91) and other grand houses such as Ulimaroa (now the Royal College of Anaesthetists).
• Most distinctive feature of the large double-storey Italianate mansion is the cast-iron lacework, with triangular brackets and curved patterns.
• Divided into two flats in 1939 and in 1964 became the Wilglen Private Hospital.
• Sold in 1989, 100 years after it was built,for use as a single residence.
• Underwent substantial restoration in the 1990s, including addition of the pastiche reproduction tower top floor.
• In French, the street name ‘moule’ means mussel, reflecting Narellan’s proximity to the seashore.



Apartment Complex
Address: 28–30 Bay St, Brighton
Style: Contemporary
Architects: Catt Architects
Date: 1997

• Highlights the recent transition from Georgian to Frank Lloyd Wright–influenced styles in Bayside area.
• Influenced by Frank Lloyd Wright’s Prairie Houses, including the famous Robie House (1908) with its wide eaves, horizontal bands of brickwork with interlocking piers, windows grouped in series forming wide expanses between the piers or wall sections, and the distinctive shallow squared planter bowls.
• Consists of eight apartments and one two-storey townhouse.


Address: 2A Seacombe Gr, Brighton
Style: Neo Modern
Architects: b.e. architecture
Date: 2010

• Visionary bluestone residence inspired by some of Melbourne’s iconic buildings and streetscapes.
• Enveloped by trees to soften the edges of the property and located within a tree lined street.
• “Uncompromising in its modernist, hard edged simplicity, this purist ‘black’ box (or is it an elevated vault?) imposes itself above its corner site with strong urban attitude possibly deriving from its proximity to relentless traffic and/or contrastingly ‘friendlier’ neighbours. Design integrity cannot be questioned.” (Bayside Built Environment Award Winner 2010, Best New Dwelling – Joint Winner).


Wesleyan Uniting Church (Girraween Chappel)
Address: 278 New St, Brighton (cnr Allee St)
Style: Gothic Revival
Architect: Charles Webb
Date: 1854

• Simple but elegant church built of rendered masonry in the Early English Gothic style.
• A remnant of the early settlement in Brighton.
• Tall windows with typical Gothic pointed arches, and trefoil windows symbolic of the trinity.
• Built by the Webb brothers who were active in Brighton, it expanded over 150 years with the growth of Brighton.
• Small gabled entrance porch added in 1858 and church extended in 1892.
• Home to a Fincham organ
• Owned and respectfully restored by Brighton Grammar School.


Page last updated: 22 Jun 2015