PROPERTY A MYSTERY SOLVED Historic PIONEERS OF home up CITY SUCCESS for sale
PERCHED high on a cliff face with stunning views, 9 Cleveland Terrace is undoubtedly one of Townsville’s most recognisable properties yet its ownership has been shrouded in mystery. That’s until now. Launching on to the market for the first time in 44 years, the property has been revealed to be that of prominent businessman and cofounding director of the North Queensland Cowboys, Max Short, who died last year aged 89.
His beloved North Ward home, which he shared with wife Phoebe, will now be auctioned on August 10 with the first open home held tomorrow from 4pm- 4.30pm.
Listing agent Julie Mahoney, from Harcourts Kingsberry, said the sale presented a rare opportunity.
“It’s an iconic landmark home as there’s no other like it in Townsville,” she said. “It’s one of those properties that is easily recognisable. A home you look up to, thinking ‘ imagine living there’.
“I think there will be a lot of people interested in taking a look at this home as the Short family is well known in the Townsville business community and Max owned most of commercial land on Mitchell St in North Ward.”
Originally built in 1936, the home draws inspiration from American bungalow design – low to the ground with large porches sheltered by wide overhanging eaves.
It sits atop an unparalleled 3656sq m block which spans two allotments with two street frontages and lends itself to future development.
“The home was built at a time where the world was obsessed with Hollywood and we started to become more Americanised,” Ms Mahoney said.
While the home has been extended over the years to include an ensuite to the master bedroom, much of its original layout remains.
“There are three doublesized bedrooms, high ceil- ings, a formal dining room and living room that lead out to a beautiful veranda with stunning views across The Strand and North Ward,” Ms Mahoney said.
“The original garaging is also still there but has been used as a shed in recent years.
“It really is a one- of- akind home and I have been told there have been many wonderful parties at the home over the years with only two owners in 81 years.” THERE are few Townsville families who could claim to be as instrumental in shaping the city as we know it today.
The Short family traces its Townsville origins back to Albert Short, who moved from South Australia in 1886.
“He landed in Townsville and decided it was not a bad spot. So he went back to Adelaide and sold up and came back again with his family. Quite a risky thing in those days. You couldn’t get much further away than Townsville could you?” grandson Max Short told the Townsville Bulletin in 2015.
In 1887, Albert bought an acre of land on Eyre St along with a block on the corner of Gregory and Mitchell streets, where he set up as a grocer and confectioner. He soon became known as Townsville’s prominent storekeeper.
With his public profile, he began to take an interest in civic affairs and was elected to council for nine years, serving one term as deputy mayor.
Albert’s business genes were passed on to his sons with his youngest, Stanley, opening a menswear shop called Stan Short Draper in Flinders St, which flourished during World War II.
His eldest son, Charles, also made a name for himself when he started a business selling drapery to canegrowers in Ingham, Tully and Cardwell.
Albert Short died in 1930 and his North Ward store closed. That was until 1960 when grandsons Max and Merv Short bought back the land and expanded the former business until it covered three acres. The retail centre still exists, and stands today as the North Ward Shopping Centre.