‘I have set up shop!’: Mary Taylor in Wellington

In order to mark International Women’s Day, it’s time to honour one of New Zealand’s first and most forthright feminists, and her connection to a prominent corner of Wellington. The work going on on the corner of Cuba Street and Dixon Street in Wellington, is transforming what was Te Aro House (but which I can’t help of…

Erskine #3

The beautiful chapel at Erskine College has been cordoned off this week (as pictured above) because a new engineering report written

Facades and Parapets

The government has issued a new policy today, to require owners of particular buildings to “tie back” at-risk facades and parapets that face onto the street within one year.  The focus is on unreinforced masonry buildings on routes that have high pedestrian and vehicle traffic in four areas which now have a heightened risk of earthquakes as a result…

Erskine College #2

Pre-Christmas, things appear to be moving fast on Erskine College.  Last week, the Save Erskine College Trust (SECT) was given an interim enforcement order by the Environment Court against developer The Wellington Company, the owner of the college.  

A reflection on the Wellington Online Heritage Inventory

In the second of our guest articles by students and graduates of the Museum and Heritage Studies programme at Victoria University of Wellington, Rebecca Ford writes about the new Wellington City Council Heritage Inventory. Christmas came early for Wellington heritage fans on 29 November. The Wellington City Council Heritage Inventory ( www.wellingtoncityheritage.org.nz ) has finally launched, and it is a…

Silver Linings

From our heritage ‘silver linings’ section of the recent earthquake (we’ve already talked of another one here) the movie reviewer from the Dominion Post pointed out

Catholic Work

The inauguration of our new Catholic Prime Minster today reminded me of the rather sad, and, in the end, futile letter written by Catholic architect John Sidney Swan, 

Retrospective Funding Now Available for Wellington Heritage

In a fairly major policy change, the Wellington City Council have just announced that it is possible to apply retrospectively for funding from the council’s Heritage Fund for earthquake strengthening, which has a budget of 1.2 million for 2016-2017.  This will allow owners who had to carry out urgent repairs, or pay for engineering assessments,…

Old High Court back in action

In a rare piece of good heritage news following the November earthquake, Wellington’s historic High Court building, in Stout Street, has been pressed back into service. It is a Category One listed building, which went through a lengthy multi-million dollar restoration project ending in 2010, at the same time as the new Supreme Court building was being built next…

Erskine College #1

I was surprised to see in my Saturday newspaper that the advertisements have begun for the 96 new houses, apartments and townhouses (as pictured) that are planned for the Erskine College site in Island Bay.   Of course I know that they are spec built, and so the developer needs to start selling them even before…

The changing pace of heritage

In the first of a series of blogs by students at the excellent post-graduate Museums and Heritage Studies programme at Victoria University of Wellington, Anna Abernethy reflects on Wellington Mayor Justin Lester’s recent announcement of his intention to reduce the deadlines for owners of earthquake-prone buildings to upgrade, or demolish, their buildings.  Growing up in Auckland in the…

Wellington Cathedral Organ

The enormous organ at Wellington Cathedral, with 3,500 pipes, has been badly damaged in the November 2016 earthquake.  It has been in the cathedral only since 1964,  prior to that it was down the road on Mulgrave Street in Old St Paul’s since 1877.