Revesby Estate is jumping with joy thanks to Banks’ link

The kangaroo on the new thatched roof at the Old Grange
The kangaroo on the new thatched roof at the Old Grange

Most people have heard about ‘The Cat on a Hot Tin Roof’ – a famous Tennessee Williams play that led to a 1958 film starring Elizabeth Taylor and Paul Newman.

But in the village of Revesby, everyone is talking about...the kangaroo on the thatched roof!

The oldest house on the Revesby Estate has been re-thatched with a special tribute to the estate’s former custodian and famous botanist, Sir Joseph Banks.

The Old Grange, which dates back to the English Civil War, has been re-thatched.

It now features a thatched kangaroo which has being added to the new roof facing towards the Kangaroo Park, where Sir Joseph once lived.

Sir Joseph’s father bought Revesby Estate in 1714.

Sir Joseph is best known for joining Captain James Cook’s voyage to the South Pacific in 1768 aboard HMS Endeavour.

That led to a number of discoveries in Australia where Sir Joseph is still celebrated.

He has several towns names after him including the Canberra suburb of Banks and the Sydney suburbs of Bankstown, Banksland andBanksmeadow.

He brought hundreds of new species of plants back with him from the voyage many of which were planted at Revesby.

It is also said that he brought kangaroos back to the estate, which consequently led to the naming of Kangaroo Park.

The Old Grange has previously been a pub and a brewery but is now a residential property in the centre of the estate.

The thatching was carried out by local Master Thatcher, Stewart Alexander, who is accredited by the National Society of Master Thatchers.

Today’s custodians, the Wiggins-Davies family, can celebrate over 300 years of unbroken family ownership.

With the help of significant educational establishments, the estate has created a volunteer group to investigate the history of the estate.

•For more information about the group – or the estate in general – call the estate office on 01507 568395 or visit www.revesbyestate.co.uk