Landmark Newtown warehouse breaks suburb record by $750,000


Bob Miller and Gay Black have sold their Newtown property for a record price. Picture: Chris Pavlich/The Australian.


A landmark mansion tucked behind an old warehouse facade has just shattered the Newtown suburb record by $750,000.

The former bakery at 198-200 Australia St with an exquisite Roman redesign sold for $5.8 million to a mystery Bellevue Hill family.

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The sale price eclipses the previous Newtown record of $5.05 million — set at the end of last year when WiseTech Global exec Brett Shearer purchased a converted Masonic hall.

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No. 198-200 Australia St is one of two houses in Newtown to sell for more than $5m.


CoreLogic confirms the two properties are the only residential properties to have ever broken the $4m price barrier in Newtown.

The Australia St warehouse had been owned for 26 years by former 2UE and Toyota executive Bob Miller and his wife Gay.

It was on the market for a total of 497 days with The Agency’s Brad Gillespie and sold within 17 days of the guide being adjusted down to $5.8m.

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The pool is one of the standout features and something of a rarity in the neighbourhood.


The new owners plan to renovate the entire property.


Mr Gillespie said it was a phenomenal result after he and the vendors knew it would be a long process to finalise a record deal for Newtown.

While he was unable to confirm who the Bellevue Hill family were, Mr Gillespie said they would be looking to spend considerable money on renovating the building after coming out of no where to buy it.

“We did not know of them until only a few weeks ago,” he said.

The house at 198-200 Australia St is located on the corner of Camperdown Memorial Park and has seven bedrooms and four parking spaces.

Real Estate

The house has seven bedrooms and plenty of entertaining areas.


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The kitchen has lots of benchspace.


Regarded as one of the largest homes in Newtown, the property is on a 530sqm block and has nearly 900sqm of internal and external space across two levels.

It was expanded in 1921 and was used to manufacture clothing until the late 1980s, when it was converted into its current format. It is a mix of high ceilings, steel beams and modern interiors, with an open-plan layout connecting most rooms.

Mr Miller and Ms Black purchased the house in 1994 for $650,000 — a remarkably high figure at the time for Newtown.

Real Estate

Roman inspired touches can be found throughout.


Real Estate

The previous Newtown record was held by this Masonic hall that sold for $5.05m last year.


The house has played host to a number of famous guests over the years, with radio presenter John Laws just one example.

The most unique feature of the property is the courtyard and pool, with the Roman design allowing for the highest level of privacy.

It is the second big ticket factory to sell in the inner west after comedian Merrick Watts sold his converted Lilyfield warehouse to renovator Cherie Barber for around $6 million.

Additional reporting Owen Roberts

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Community sporting clubs like Sydney’s Newtown Breakaways are counting the cost of COVID-19


“They give us a couple of vouchers for players’ player of the week and in return, we’ve got 60, 70-odd people showing up to the pub and we put so much money back. They let us go in on Fridays to do meat raffles – they provide us with the meat, or a veggie box, to raffle off and in return anything we make, we get to keep.”

The Salisbury Hotel is the major sponsor of the Newtown Breakaways, but their co-dependency has been cruelled by COVID-19.

But like all pubs, the Salisbury has had to close. That’s bad for them and for clubs like the Breakaways who depend on small businesses to keep the floodlights on and help recoup up-front costs.

“They are slowly coming back into it, but we obviously can’t expect to help us out too much financially, because they’re probably in bigger trouble than us,” Ms Chen said.

In the Southern Highlands, the local basketball league is also facing threats. The Moss Vale and District Basketball Association, that caters for 650 players, estimates approximately 80 per cent of pledged sponsorship has been lost.

If the winter season does not go ahead, it could cost them a further $20,000.

“The financial impact of this pandemic has hit us hard,” said Paul Barcicki, the association’s director of assets and sponsorship.

“We fear for our sport … being an indoor contact sport, we are concerned it will be some time before we can resume normal operations. If other sports can resume earlier, we fear that we risk losing some of our players to other sports.”

These are but two examples of what the Australian Sport Foundation sees as a major crisis unfolding in the community.

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There could be further pain, too, as likely new hygiene and cleaning requirements for grassroots sport and facilities will add to the cost burden, while the capacity of players to keep shelling out for registration fees will be reduced.

The foundation is launching a national campaign to raise not only awareness, but money to help these clubs and organisations recover. A survey, accessible at covid.sportsfoundation.org.au, has been established to help quantify the impact before the foundation engages with philanthropic sources and government for relief.

“This is going to be a long-lasting problem that’s with us for a while, and the fix is going to take a while, but we’re going to be on the fundraising track as soon as we’ve got the data in from this survey,” foundation chief executive Patrick Walker said.

It could take up to six months for their work to come to fruition – but in lieu of the usual sausage sizzles, meat raffles or social events, Mr Walker said there are other ways for stricken community clubs to seek financial assistance.

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“We have an online fundraising platform where everybody can sign up, and for supporters who want to donate to a club through the ASF, it’s tax deductible,” he said.

“Lots of people are suffering, but there’s actually a big chunk of the community that’s doing fine – not spending much money, income unchanged, working from home.

“They’re the people who would be willing to help members less fortunate … maybe with rego or a subsidy, or make a donation to help their club survive.”

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