At home with Harry Potter star, Miriam Margolyes

VIEWS to take ones breath away are what actress Miriam Margolyes wakes up to each morning when she is at her home Yarrawa Hill in Robertson. Widely known as herbologist, Professor Pomona Sprout, with the flyaway hair, in Harry Potter movies her resume is long and varied.

A veteran of stage and screen, she first discovered picturesque Robertson when she lent her voice to the character of Fly the border collie sheepdog in the movie Babe.

Years later when her and her partner Heather and Heather’s sister Sandra were looking for a spot to build a home she was drawn back to the area.

Miriam said all three women are in the autumn of their days. “We wanted something that was quiet,” she said. “Heather and her sister are Australian. So they wanted to be in Australia and I’m becoming Australian.“When we saw this place I thought yeah this is what I want. “It is Australian enough and it is also a bit like England. There are elements of it that remind me of England. If I was to go and live in something that is very Australian in Broken Hill or up in Darwin, I know that it is beautiful but it would be very foreign.

“This isn’t quite so foreign. I wanted something that was away, solitude is important.”

Except for the occasional wombat or the laugh of a kookaburra ringing out there are no other disturbances.

Situated high among the trees the views stretch out towards Lake Illawarra and Kiama.Because of busy work schedules the women are not always in the country to enjoy the home.

A decision was made to share the architecturally designed home with others by renting it out.

A unique home Miriam said the house was built to fit into the environment. “It is rather curiously designed,” she said. “It is three suites so each suite has a bedroom, a bathroom and a study.”There is a modern feel to the home with corrugated iron and steel beams which are offset with character filled pieces sourced from around the world, there are wooden doors from Indonesia to pieces bought

from Africa.Heather a professor of history, picked out the pieces from Indonesia once the home was built. Light and airy the house has an expanse of windows and decks that surround the home. Making it perfect for sitting inside or out and watching the changing of the day.

Miriam said she feels the house has character.

“Some would find it very strange, but everyone that comes here to stay loves it,” she said.

“They are usually city weekenders, family groups, we have also had painting groups and book reading groups.” Oh and the laundry is the place to check out what movies Miriam has been a part of.

For more information on renting Yarrawa Hill, visit www.yarrawahill.com.

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