Family's heart still beats in this home

DAVID and Shelly Turner's humble heritage cottage, located at 111 Stornaway Road, gives true meaning to the words "a family home".

The home has been in the Turner linage for five generations. It was awarded the Restoration of a Heritage Building - commercial or residential award by Queanbeyan City Council earlier this month.

The couple said it was an honour to receive the award and recognition for all the work they have done since taking ownership of the home in 2002.

"I find it quite amazing that this home has been in the one family for 88 years. I'm very proud to say that and I would love it to be another 88 years," Shelly said.

"That will be a decision for our seven-year-old daughter Ruby when the time comes, it's her choice. But I would like to think that she'd love to keep it in the family and somehow I think that she probably will."

Twelve months after moving into the home, known as "Avalon", the Turners decided it was time to restore the house.

"[Initially] we wanted the extra space to have a family," Shelly said.

"Nothing had been done to the home, so it was in its original state. We decided it was time to have a facelift and get it back to being a beautiful home again."

The renovation was a two-and-half year project transforming it from a two bedroom, one bathroom abode to extend and accommodate another bedroom and bathroom.

The couple was adamant about preserving the original features of the house and chose some heritage elements like the cornices and ceiling roses to tie it into the new areas of the building.

"We liked the look of having the cottage as a home, it was very appealing to us," Shelly explained.

"It was also in honour of David's family history to keep the home as what it looked like on the outside but of course when you come in, it's totally different.

"The hardest part was trying to blend the two eras together."

Some of the improvements included a new roof, cladding and windows. The entire house was rewired and the floors, walls and ceiling all redone.

The couple chose to remove the home's three fireplaces and replace it with ducted heating and air-conditioning. It proved to be one of the bigger challenges of the project.

"Thousands and thousands and thousands of bricks later, the fireplaces were finally all gone," Shelly said.

"The thing with renovating, it's like opening up a Pandora's Box. You don't know what you're going to find next or what else needs to be done."

The Turners have been very happily living in the renovated home for the past 10 years and have no further plans to change the house.

"In the long run it really didn't become a home that we were renovating for ourselves but for our extended family," Shelly said.

"We just love it, the end result has been fantastic. I love coming home and coming through those front gates.

"There's nothing else better."

Related story: Home is where the heritage is

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