the university. Her grandfather Robert Barr Smith (1824-1915) was a member of the University Council for nineteen years and donated an initial £9,000 to purchase books. In 1920 the Barr Smith family gave a further £11,000 to the university in the form of an endowment. Lady Ursula’s father, Tom Elder Barr Smith, donated a whopping £30,000 in 1928 towards erecting the Georgian building to house the library, designed by architect Walter Hervey Bagot (1880-1963). He also assisted in the founding of St. Mark’s College in 1925, the oldest residential college associated with the university. By 1970, the year of Lady Ursula’s death, the couple had made the decision to bequeath Carrick Hill to South Australia upon Hayward’s death. He subsequently remarried in London in 1972 to Jean Katherine Bridges (née Folder), herself a widow. Despite being childless, in 1973 Hayward was named South Australia’s ‘Father of the Year’ in recognition of forty years of the annual Christmas Pageant. He died suddenly at Carrick Hill, 13 August, 1983, with the property and the majority of its contents passing to the State. The Carrick Hill Trust Act was assented to in State Parliament, 28 March, 1985, and the property was formally listed on the Register of State Heritage Items in August the following year. In subsequent years Carrick Hill has served as an ongoing testament to the style and generosity of a couple descended from civic-minded families, who were conscious of their good fortune, and did much to endow the city of Adelaide and its institutions. The Haywards had seen first hand the demolition of many manorial estates, including the Barr Smith home of Birksgate, and the tragic loss of over 600 years of history at Beaudesert. It was perhaps with this in mind that they resolved to keep their aesthetic vision, including the bulk of their paintings, textiles, decorative art, antiques, and furniture, intact. Richard Heathcote agrees that it was, “an act to keep the collection together as a whole entity, to safeguard the sense of pleasure which it had provided them and prevent its destruction and dispersal; and secondly, to further the Haywards’ sense of responsibility as philanthropists in bequeathing to the public, for the benefit of others, those things that they had acquired through their wealth”.29 As with other ‘house museums’ that now welcome thousands of visitors a year, elements of nostalgia, voyeurism, and mythmaking inevitably come into play. There is still an underlying tension concerning how various personal items and private passions should be interpreted in a public context, and at what stage such a collection begins to resemble a shrine. The Haywards created a particular ambience at Carrick Hill, one that could not fail to make an impression on their friends and guests; of culture, refinement and hospitality. Essentially, however, it was still their principal home, one that suited and was directly shaped by the tastes of the couple, “... they collected for their own enjoyment. They were serious about their acquisitions and not in the least concerned about public opinion or the status of what they were assembling. It is an approach to collecting largely ignored in today’s world of celebrity and symbols of wealth”.30 Carrick Hill, 46 Carrick Hill Drive, Springfield (SA) - carrickhill.sa.gov.au > Sir Matthew Smith, Nude With Pearl Necklace (c.1931), oil on canvas, 73.5 x 92.6 cm. (Collection of the Carrick Hill Trust, Adelaide, Hayward Bequest.)
Published on Dec 11, 2017
Published on Dec 11, 2017
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