5 McLachlan Street, Northcote - known as "West Bend" – is arguably the first house built in Northcote. The property was initially owned by John Grindrod of Collingwood, who purchased allotments 2 and 3 of Section 10 in the Northcote Township during October 1853. Soon after, it is claimed he built "West Bend", although there is no listing of the Grindrods in Melbourne Directories until 1874.
Edwards lived at “West Bend” with his wife Anne and family of 12 children until Ann died in 1910. Towards the end of her life Anne leased the house to James Gibbs, a contractor. After Anne’s death “West Bend” was owned by Lilian and John Hewitt.
The house – which faces the Merri Creek - is double-fronted with 3 stages of development: stone (1850s), brickwork (1880s) and the last renovation in 1910. The original stone section has been demolished.
In 1925, Grindrod’s grand-daughter, Dorothea married the Hon. John Cain – Northcote Councillor, leader of the Victorian Labour Party and three time Premier of the state; 1943 (for 4 days), 1945 - 1947 and 1952 – 1955.