In this home, between 1919 and 1926, 15 silent pictures were developed, printed and edited, including the Australian classics "The Breaking of the Drought" and "The Girl of the Bush".
Walter Franklyn Brown Barrett (1874-1961) was born in England and commenced his time in the movie industry as a newsreel cameraman for Pathe-Frere, filming documentaries in Australia and New Zealand. Among his filming assignments was the visit in 1901 of the Duke and Duchess of York.
In 1904 Barrett made the first complete film of the running of the Melbourne Cup and was awarded by Pathe-Frere for his work on photographing racehorses in full gallop.
Between filming of the documentaries, Barrett also made a series of "Ally Sloper" comedy shorts which won him the Australian equivalent of the Academy Award. With the success of the comedies, Franklyn commenced creating full-length dramas which he not only filmed but also wrote, edited and produced.
In all his productions, Barrett prided himself on the fact that he could produce a successful film on a budget that never exceeded 1000 pounds.
Among his great successes were "The Pioneers" (1916), "The Monk and The Woman" (1918) and "Know thy Child" (1921).
Throughout his film career, he was ably assisted by his wife Mabel and later by his daughter, Harrie "Todds".
When the major film companies started to threaten the future of the independent film maker in the late twenties, and with the advent of sound films, Barrett gave up his production company and turned to theatre management.
Apart from all his movie-making, Franklyn could play every string instrument and could speak fluent English, French and Italian.