Redeemer Honours Rochedale's Past

Eighty-eight years ago in November 1931, Mr George Nott came to Rochedale and established a small galvanized iron cottage on the present site of Redeemer Lutheran College. The living quarters consisted of one room and there was a store/packing shed to one side, under the same roof. Mr Nott lived alone in the cottage for ten years until he married Miss Joan Francis on 25 October 1941.

The Cottage was originally located alongside of the mango tree next to where Redeemer Chapel stands today, and was relocated in 1988 as part of a bicentennial project. Thirty years later, the Cottage was relocated to the present site which is now situated at the front of the Junior School, behind the present home of George's daughter, Cheryl Nott who we are proud to have as our neighbour.

A special re-opening of the relocated and refurbished Nott's Cottage was held on Wednesday 31 July, together with the Nott's Cottage garden project, which was designed and created by our Year 4 students in 2018. We were delighted to have Cheryl Nott join us to share the story of Rochedale, together with the founding Headmaster of Redeemer Lutheran College, Mr Robin Kleinschmidt, who share memories of the very early years, and the establishment of this site here at Redeemer.

The first restoration of Nott’s Cottage

At a staff meeting at Redeemer Lutheran College in 1987, it was decided that a fitting Bicentennial project for our college to undertake would be the restoration of the cottage and the establishment of a small local history museum. The cottage was on the property when the school was established, and had at one stage been the home of a previous owner of the property (Mr George Nott).

Thus, a staff committee was established to oversee the project. The three teachers appointed interviewed Mr Nott on several occasions and have tried to restore the cottage to resemble the way it had been set up as a bachelor’s home. While the refurbishing is not entirely faithful, an attempt had been made to include displays of items, which were in common use in Brisbane homes at the time that Mr Nott was living in the cottage.

The cooperation and enthusiasm of the Nott family is here acknowledged.

Nott’s Cottage Timeline

  • 1931 - Mr George Nott came to Rochedale in November 1931, and established a small galvanized iron cottage on the site of the present Redeemer Lutheran College. 
  • 1980 - On opening day ‘The Telegraph’ newspaper printed a brief report of the occasion, together with a photograph of student David Larmar standing in Nott’s cottage gazing up at a large carpet snake coiled on the rafters.
  • 1988 – August: Nott’s Cottage relocated to the rear of the school where the original restoration work commenced.
  • 1988 – November – Nott’s Cottage was officially opened with a short ceremony at which Mr & Mrs George Nott was in attendance.
  • 2017 – Extensive termite damage was discovered in Nott’s Cottage.
  • 2017 (September) – The original Nott’s Cottage was demolished.
  • 2018 – Work commenced on the construction of the replica version of Nott’s Cottage in the Junior School on the site of the Mrs Cheryl Nott’s shed.
  • 2018 – (September) – Year 4 students designed the new cottage gardens surrounding the new Nott’s Cottage
  • 2018 – Replica version of Nott’s Cottage was completed
  • 2019 – 31 July, official opening of the reproduction of Nott’s Cottage, based on the original footprint, including mini museum of the original artefacts.

Nott’s Cottage Garden Project

In Semester 2, 2018 the Year 4 students embarked on a Project Based Learning Unit that centred around making our community a more sustainable one.

We examined the practices around the school and decided that, while we did some things very well, there was certainly room for improvement.

With this in mind, we brainstormed ideas and came up with many cross-curricular ideas to make Redeemer a more sustainable place. The relocation of Nott’s Cottage was perfect timing, as we had previously discussed the fact that ‘progress’ had already left an imprint on our environment. The students were heavily involved in decision making and came up with the idea of having a market garden within the grounds of Nott’s Cottage. We decided that if we could grow some of our own food, it would mean that we could become more sustainable and reduce our impact on the environment by using less processing and packaging.

We researched the local area, which crops had traditionally grown best, invited guest speakers, planned out the garden design and researched irrigation options. In groups, we built models of the garden and wrote persuasive texts to convince our administration and grounds staff to choose our garden designs. The unit culminated in a ‘Master Chef’ cooking activity where we made salads using an ingredient from our garden as the ‘hero’ of the dish. We served these to our parents at our final Showcase. The unit was a huge success and allowed students to have ownership of their learning.

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