Like many of the Illawarra's heritage homes Newton Park comes with a ghostly tale.Located at Kembla Grange, Newton Park is one of Wollongong's oldest estates and will be auctioned at Kiama on Monday night.
The 54ha rural property includes a heritage listed homestead that dates back to 1845.
According to Wollongong City Council the house was built in 1845 for David Williamson Irving at a cost of $2,400.
The Irving family lived in the house until 1863, until Mr Irving was appointed Police Magistrate at Forbes and the property sold.
On April 3, 1968, the Mercury's front page included an article about the "The Ghost of Newton Park".
"For years the story of the ghost has been told among homesteaders in the district,'' the article states.
One theory was that the ghost is the spirit of one of the convicts who built the homestead.The National Trust of Australia offered its own theory that the ghost could be of David Irving's older brother John, who had died on an "ill fated north-west passage expedition which perished within the Arctic Circle".
Asked about the ghost in 1968 then owner Mrs Maude said the ghost was described as "the legend of Newton Park"."No, I haven't seen it," she said."I'm short sighted.
"The house was first restored in 1947, after it was purchased by a Sydney eye specialist.More recently it was extensively renovated by its current owner, local builder Robert Adlington.Mr Adlington recently sold another of the region's oldest properties after restoration, Nudjia House at Unanderra, purchased by one of the children of a previous owner.
Newton Park is listed with Neil Campbell of Ray White Gerringong.Mr Campbell said as the property neighbours the Kembla Grange Racecourse it was would be ideally suited as a thoroughbred stud.
"But the potential is endless for such a land holding just ten minutes from Wollongong's CBD," Mr Campbell said.
Monday night's auction will take place at 7pm at the Sebel Harbourside, Kiama on a program that also includes the landmark Jamberoo property Culwalla, a circa 1848 heritage Georgian-style homestead on 38 ha.