Cross House was described in the 1920s as being built of stuccoed stone with a slated roof. The first floor had five bedrooms, a WC, and a bathroom. There were two staircases. The ground floor had an entrance hall; a drawing room; a dining room; a kitchen with a range and serving hatch to the dining room; a servants hall; a scullery with a furnace, a boiler and a pump; a larder and dairy. There was also a verandah and a conservatory. The grounds were described, 'delightful pleasure gardens, handsomely timbered including picturesque lawn, ornamental with handsome trees and bushes, a pretty rockery with small artificial pond. Productive fruit and vegetable garden and a tomato house.' The stable yard had an ash house, a harness room, a three-horse stable and a trap house.
Mr Thomas Woodman married Elizabeth Symons in Alphington on the 26th September 1833 and they were recorded as living in Cross House in 1835. In 1841 they were recorded as residents of the house and Thomas was listed in the subscribers list for 'Botanists. Rambles in New Zealand'.
Mr and Mrs Woodman continued to live in the house through to the middle 1880s. In 1851 and 1861 Thomas was recorded as a landed proprietor and as would be expected they employed house servants. In 1851 a visitor was recorded, Georgina Godfrey.
In 1871 Thomas recorded his income coming from lands and included in the list of servants was a house keeper. Thomas was made the chairman of The School Board that formed on the 31st March 1875, the new village school was built on the site of the burnt out Church House in 1876.
Mrs Elizabeth Woodman was recorded as dying on the 23rd May 1875. Thomas continued to lived in Cross House until he died on the 23rd September 1885. A window in Alphington Church was erected in the memory of Thomas Woodman by his nephew Joseph Godfrey.
In 1891 the new residents of Cross House were recorded as Henry Madgewick D. Willcocks, a tea merchant, and his wife Julia. Also living in the house was Henry's sister-in-law living on her own means. There were also four nieces, his sister and a cook and domestic servant.
Henry continued to live at the house in 1901 and he and his wife now had two sons, two of Henry's nieces continued to reside at the house. A cook and domestic servant lived in house.
In 1911 Gertrude Barley resided in the house living by private means, she also had a companion, Minnie Stone.
In 1946 and 1949 C. F. Bainbridge was recorded as the resident.
Copyright © Rowena Kirkpatrick