Ireland family find space to spread their wings

The Ireland family can’t wait to come home to Wirraway.

Samantha and Rob Ireland’s adult children haven’t failed to launch—in fact far from it. They keep flying the coup then landing back home between adventures.

Eldest daughter Emma, 24, has recently arrived home from Europe and is about to return for an extended stay. She’ll be away again when the family moves into the new house they are preparing to build in Defence Housing Australia’s Wirraway community at Thornton, just 30 minutes from the centre of Newcastle.

Named after the famous Australian military aircraft, Wirraway is the ideal place for the big Ireland family to spread its wings.

Parents Sam and Rob run a thriving trucking business and the office paperwork is overflowing the family loungeroom. The new house will have a self-contained office at the front adding to the spacious ranch-style façade across a very wide 983 square metre lot.

There will be plenty of room for the family’s dogs and the caravan Rob and Sam have just bought so they can get away from it all at weekends.

‘Everyone is growing up and we were running out of room so, while most people of our age are downsizing, we decided it was time to build a bigger place,’ Sam said.

‘We can’t wait to move back to Thornton. We’ve been away from the area for the past five years, but we lived just around the corner for 13 or 14 years so we feel like we’re coming home.’

The new house is in a quiet, private location with permanent views over the wetlands stretching between Thornton and Woodberry.

Sons Jacob, 22, and Liam, 19, also work in the family business while youngest daughter Darcy, 15, is finishing high school.

‘Everyone will fit nicely here,’ said Sam who runs the office for the business. ‘Being at the end of the freeway we are very central and close to Newcastle. The train line and shopping centre are nearby and the kids all work in the area so everything we need is right here.’

Built by award-winning developer Defence Housing Australia (DHA), Wirraway covers 58 hectares and will eventually be home to 500 families. Half the lots will be used to provide attractive, modern homes for Defence members and their families while the remainder will be sold to the private market.

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