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77 Rongopai Street - House, fence and gates

77-Rongopai -Street

Building Details

Address: 77 Rongopai Street, House, fence and gates
Construction date: 1929
Architect/designer:  AR Allen
Architectural style: English Domestic Revival/Eclectic
District Plan Category: 2
Building number: 2
Heritage NZ Category:

Physical and Social History 

The original plans are held in the Building Permits files (p723), and are dated 26 January 1929. The architect was AR Allen, and the partly obscured name of the commissioning owner seems certain to be Frank Chin or his wife Frances. These plans include three bedrooms upstairs, along with a separate library, a maid's room, and a 'meals nook' that was separate from the main dining room. There was also a flat-roofed garage and a front fence.

CT WN 342/278 was issued in 1927 to Frances Jane Chin, wife of Frank Robert Bertie Chin, who was a company manager of Palmerston North.

Subsequent owners
1934 - Norma Envin Lascelles, wife of Arthur Montague Lascelles, osteopath of PN. She died November 1937, aged 36 years. Her surname is given as Lascells in the Kelvin Grove Cemetery records.
1938a - Transmission to Arthur Montague Lascelles, osteopath of PN
1938b - Eric Emerson Mabin, settler of PN
1951a - Marjorie Grace Marshall, widow of PN
1951b - Florian Richard Lewis, furnisher of PN
1959a - John Boyd Wallace Dunlop, physician of PN
1959b - JBW Dunlop's wife Velda Dunlop is added to the CT Velda died on 15 October 1984 aged 68 years, and John died 29 December 1984 aged 74 years.
1985a - Transmission to Michael John Paton Dunlop and Margaret Jane Gilkison as executors
1985b - Robert Clark Cooper, insurance officer, & his wife Heather Belle Cooper, of PN
1991 - Duncan George Harvey, solicitor, & Lynne Yolanda Harvey, medical practitioner
1997a - Wallace Development Company Ltd
1997b - Stephen Andrew Bell-Booth & Julie Lillian Bell-Booth

The owner at the time of drainage work in 1965 was Dunlop. The owners in 1993  (major kitchen renovations) and 1996 (bathroom and laundry renovations) were D and L Harvey. An inbuilt fire was also installed in 1995. Plans for a pool were also submitted in 2001 by S and J Bell-Booth.

Architectural Design 

The two storied house has a translated, back to back L shaped plan with the entry and porch set back from the road.  The room closest to the road is the drawing room, with the dining room behind.  The entry and stair hall lead to the dining room on one side and the library on the other.  To the rear of the house is the kitchen, maid's room, laundry and porch on one side and a "meals nook" and verandah on the other side.

The first floor has three bedrooms and bathroom off a central landing. 

The general form and elevations of the house have the characteristics of the English Domestic Revival style, with expansive, dominant, unequal gabled roofs, with secondary gables at right angles.  Double hipped gables, a key feature of English architects version of the style, roof the stair and first floor bathroom.  Tall chimneys pierce the roof providing vertical accents to the low, shallow pitched roofs.

The house maintains other aspects of the style with asymmetry of elevations and building form, bay windows, balconies, semi-circular windows and arched porches.  Different to the style, and introducing an element of eclecticism, is the use of Italianate semi-circular headed French doors with Gothic styled hood moulds.  The small and large paned double hung sash windows are more reminiscent of villas of the turn of the century.  The porte cochere has Norman styled columns and Romanesque stepped, running brackets to the Roman tiled edging of the roof.

The original drawings show a detailed design for the fence and gates, which appear to be slightly amended.  The house is set back from the road with a Moderne styled single garage at the rear.

Statement of Significance 

The house has local significance for its historical and design values, its uniqueness of building style and high level of external authenticity.

The house has design significance for its overall English Domestic Revival style form augmented by unusual eclectic detailing including Norman, Romanesque, Italianate and Gothic styles.  The house has a high level of authenticity of design, materials, craftsmanship and setting, including fences and gates designed with the house.

The house has historical values in its association with local architect AR Allen.

Additional References
Certificates of Title: WN342/278 (1927), prior DI 26/318