News & Events

32 Rewa Street

32-Rewa -Street

Building Details

Address: 32 Rewa Street, House
Construction date: 1945
Architect/designer: MT Deadman
Architectural style: Moderne
District Plan Category: 2
Building number: 79
Heritage NZ Category: Nil

Physical and Social History 

CT WN498/264, dated 1943, shows the subdivision of Rewa Street, the 23-Lot subdivision being owned by Esther Hannah Mayo as executrix. Of these, various members of the Barnao family bought five of these sections, the others being Lots 15, 16 and 17 opposite this house (Lot 11), and Lot 10, alongside it.

CT WN299/222 covering Lot 11 is dated 28 January 1944 and was issued to Dorothy Concetta Barnao, a spinster of Palmerston North. In early 1946, the property was transferred to Henry Ernest Albert Steer, a tractor driver of Palmerston North. The original plans for this house are dated October 1945. Architect MT Deadman drew them up for HEA Steer. The date 10 May 1946 also appears on the plans.

Another 1944 record in the Building Permit files, indicates that the builder was JA Sylva. Possibly this was John Albert Sylva. He died aged 61 on 5 August 1968, described in the Kelvin Grove Cemetery records as a company manager.

Subsequent owners are:
1953 - Joseph Leonard Simpson, taxi driver
1960 - Joseph Bronlow (?) Ingham Gould, a farmer of Feilding
1989 - Noreen Gould, a spinster of PN
1994 - Andrew David John King, a cabinetmaker, & Laureen Catherine King, a teacher.
2006 - Current Owner

A Versatile Garage was added in 1995, followed by a log fire in 1998.

Architectural Design 

The house is an early design of Merlin Trevor Deadman who worked as an architect for the Wanganui education board for most of his career.  He was admitted as an associate of the New Zealand Institute of Architects in 1965.

The house is single storey with three bedrooms, lounge, living room, kitchen, bathroom, toilet and laundry.  The plan is an approximate shallow 'T' shape with entry from the street off centre with the lounge on one side and the main bedroom on the other.  The entry leads to a hall and passage at right angles leading to the kitchen and living room.

The building is timber frame with a cement render finish.  The roof is noted on the original drawings as corrugated fibrolite and is a shallow single pitch sloping to the rear and supported by a timber truss.  A stepped parapet hides the roof

The general style is Moderne as seen in the general low rectangular shallow stepped forms, curved front walls, stepped flat parapets, cement rendered walls simple Art Deco styled render decoration, and triple casement windows.  The interior details of diagonally glazed panelled doors and stepped shallow fireplace are also consistent with the style. Leaded windows and arched trelliswork to the entry porch are unusual design elements.

Statement of Significance 

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

The house is a good representative example of an architecturally designed Moderne design style building.  The house design can be compared with the Church Street precinct where is it clear that there is a greater degree of design input into the proportions and detailing.[MM1] 

The house has historical values in its association with the architect, MT Deadman, with this house a rare example of his non-educational design work.  It is also historically associated with the Mr HEA Steer, for whom the house was designed.

The house and external details are largely authentic.

Additional References
Auckland School of Architecture Library Shepperd Files
Certificates of Title: WN499/222 (1944), prior WN498/264 (1943)

 [MM1]Compared in what way?