MANY who were born, or called the rooms of Mena homestead home, experienced a journey back in time yesterday.
Built in 1875, Mena was a home for one the founding families of Orange, the Daltons. During this time, there were plenty of servants to stoke fires for James Daltons’ sons, before the homestead became a maternity hospital.
Through other times Mena was sectioned off as flats and it was even the venue for Gary Blowes’ honeymoon.
Now the garden and homestead have now been restored to their former glory and outfitted to reflect the house’s grandeur by custodian Scott Gilbank.
Mr Gilbank opened the doors for the second time during his ownership yesterday, hosting a luncheon and tour as part of 2009 FOOD Week.
With pleasant tunes by Orange Regional Conservatorium students floating in the background, the Autumn weather made for a pleasant affair for approximately 50 guests, many of whom had been born in the homestead.
Mr Gilbank said the event was a chance to appreciate one of the most important buildings in Orange’s history.
“Many people have a special sentiment attached to the house and this was a chance to recognise that,” Mr Gilbank said.
Attending the lunch was also a special chance for retired veterinarian Dr Andrew Hansen.
Dr Hansen shared one of the rooms about 40 years ago after he graduated from the University of Sydney in 1967 and moved to Orange.
“It is vastly different to the place I remember,” Dr Hansen said. “It wasn’t exactly what you would call glamorous then, but we did have great times out the back.”
Proceeds of the day will be donated to the National Trust of Orange.