Six couples share an Australian home

Australian Broadcasting Company’s In the Field

A visit to an experimental communal retirement home near Taree in NSW, Australia, where three couples—who call themselves The Shedders and describe themselves as urban revolutionaries—have designed and built a shared house. By Design recently visited a retirement village and we had a huge response from you—so many of you were shocked and worried about the idea of moving into one.

Well we’ve found three couples who’ve found a unique way of dealing with some of the issues of designing a space for their ageing bodies and the loneliness you might feel in a hostel or retirement village. Near Taree, on the NSW Mid North Coast, they’ve custom built a home for all six of them to live in through their retirement. Their ages range from 63 to 70 and they have all recently left busy lives in Sydney. They engaged local Taree architect John Basden—who happens to be a regular letter writer toBy Design—whose brief was for each couple to have a separate suite with a bedroom, bathroom, study and deck, as well as for there to be a large shared space for the kitchen, dining and lounge room. It’s not quite a student share house but there are some similarities.

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