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Glen Lyon

  • 600049
  • 34 Glenlyon Drive, Ashgrove


Also known as
Marist Fathers Monastery
State Heritage
Register status
Date entered
21 October 1992
Residential: Villa
6.4 Building settlements, towns, cities and dwellings: Dwellings
8.1 Creating social and cultural institutions: Worshipping and religious institutions
Cowlishaw, James Percy Owen
Construction periods
1876–1877, Glen Lyon - Residential accommodation - main house (1876c - 1877c)
1876–1920, Glen Lyon (1876c - 1920s)
1877, Glen Lyon - Dairy/Creamery (c1877)
1880–1890, Glen Lyon - Billiards room (1880s-1890s - 1880s-1890s)
1920, Glen Lyon - Gate - entrance (1920s circa - 1920s circa)
Historical period
1870s–1890s Late 19th century


34 Glenlyon Drive, Ashgrove
Brisbane City Council
-27.44515752, 152.97957098


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Criterion AThe place is important in demonstrating the evolution or pattern of Queensland’s history.

Glen Lyon is one of the earliest residences in the Enoggera Creek area, and is closely associated with the development of the suburb of Ashgrove.

Criterion BThe place demonstrates rare, uncommon or endangered aspects of Queensland’s cultural heritage.

Glen Lyon is a rare and substantially intact late 1870s country house with associated outbuildings and gardens, and an avenue of trees.


This two-storeyed residence, the second oldest in the Ashgrove area, was erected in 1876-7 for Alexander Stewart, a partner in the merchant firm of Stewart & Hemmant. It was the centrepiece of a 250 acre (100 hectare) estate acquired by Stewart in 1875 and 1876. The property, which extended along both sides of Enoggera Creek, was named Glen Lyon after Stewart's birthplace in Scotland.

Probably designed by architect James Cowlishaw, the original plans were modified when financial considerations forced Stewart to have a more modest residence erected.

At Glen Lyon, Stewart created a country estate. Within a few years the property contained a dairy herd, fowl runs, duck pond, an orchard and vegetable garden and an assortment of outbuildings. A well was sunk, detached servants' quarters and a dairy were constructed at the rear of the main house, and a coachman's cottage, known as the Lodge, was erected near Waterworks Road.

An avenue of bunya pines, which still stand, was planted the length of the front drive (now Glenlyon Drive). The present entrance gates are not the original; wrought iron gates set in pillars of granite, which formerly fronted Waterworks Road, have been removed to Stuartholme Convent.

A detached billiards room was constructed in the 1880s or early 1890s, and the grounds around the house were landscaped. Steps led from the billiard room to a tennis court.

Alexander Stewart died in 1918 and the property was subsequently sold. Most of the estate was purchased by developer T M Burke who gradually subdivided it as the Glenlyon Estate. The house and immediate surrounds were purchased by the Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane. From about 1927 the house was rented to the New Zealand province of the Society of Mary (Marist Fathers), who purchased it in 1930. The Marist Fathers sold Glen Lyon c2003 and it currently functions as a private residence.


Glen Lyon is a large two-storeyed brick residence which is rendered to resemble ashlar. It has a hipped tiled roof, which originally was clad with slates. Wide verandahs on three sides at both levels are ornamented with cast-iron balustrading and Corinthian pillars.

At the front and north-eastern side, sets of white marble steps with urns lead to the lower verandah, which is paved with black and white marble. Bay windows to both levels on the front elevation have wide, rectangular, sashed windows, and the front entrance incorporates side panels and a fanlight of stained glass. Kitchen and bedroom wings at the rear enclose a courtyard containing a well.

Marble fireplaces are a feature of the interior, and the joinery is mainly of oak. Hand-painted decoration is visible on one of the ceilings. An elaborate stained glass window above the central staircase bears the motto of the first owners - Semper fidelis (always faithful) - but the lion's head family crest formerly located beneath this has been replaced by depictions of the Virgin Mary and Child.

Adjacent to the residence is a chapel which was formerly a billiards room, gun room and cellar. It is a small rendered brick building with a corrugated-iron hipped roof, bay windows, and arched porches. Most of the windows contain stained glass.

The detached brick dairy is externally intact, but has been converted into a toilet block. The former servants' quarters remains, as does the well.

The house and outbuildings remain on a much reduced site of approximately .78 of a hectare.

Image gallery


Location of Glen Lyon within Queensland
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
Last reviewed
1 July 2022
Last updated
20 January 2016
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