Caplen Building 1882.

Welcome to the Hawera Buildings basket.

If you would like to add images, documents or recollections about any of the buildings featured, please sign up to Kete or contact staff at the Taranaki Research Centre.


Hawera Buildings


Latest 10 topics

Hawera Sample Rooms 2020.

Hawera Sample Rooms 2020

2020 View

The present building on this site was constructed in stages during 1921 and 1947-51, although the site was earlier occupied by three timber cottages constructed for Mr James Phair during 1881 and surviving until demolished in 1921. 

The first portion of the present building to be constructed was the rear reinforced concrete portion of the present structure on the site, which was designed and built by contractor John Wilson Tong. Covering an area of 10,850 square feet,

Egmont Tourist Motors 2020.

Egmont Tourist Motors 2020

2020 View

Parts of the present building on this site, being part of allotment 51 of block 14 Hawera Town, likely date back to 1884, with substantial additions and alterations made to the structure during 1911 and 1933-34.

During January 1877, ownership of Allotment 51 was transferred from Thomas Quinlivan to Charles Tait, before being promptly transferred to Martin Power. Ownership of the property was held by Power until the section was purchased by Dunedin clerk Eustace Henry Fulton during

J. G. Osborne & Co Building 2020.

J. G. Osborne & Co Building 2020

2020 View

This attractive single-storey reinforced concrete building was constructed during 1918-19 for J. G. Osborne & Co (who leased the property from Nolan, Tonks & Co) and replaced an earlier two-storied timber auction mart constructed for R. H. Nolan & Co in 1881.

The principal Regent Street elevation is designed in a stripped Classical style being finished with both stucco plaster and smooth cement render and decorated with moulded geometric

121 High Street 2020.

121 High Street 2020

2020 View

This two-storied brick and timber building was constructed for Messrs Nolan, Tonks & Co to replace several circa 1870s buildings damaged by a fire which occured on February 22nd 1901.

The new building was completed during late-October or early-November 1901 and was designed by architects Warren and Stephenson. The building was described as being a “very handsome addition to the architecture of the town”, the first floor facade being “finished with two light sashes, with heavy pilasters

Wallace's Pharmacy.

Wallace's Pharmacy

2020 View

This attractive two storied commercial building at the north-western corner of High and Regent Streets was constructed in two stages during 1897-98 and 1908-09, with the site having been associated with the pharmacy trade from 1889 until at least the late-1990s.

The first building on this site was constructed for chemist Ezekial Fake during 1889, it being reported during the middle of that year that Fake was to have new business premises constructed at the corner of High and

Hāwera Public Library.

Hāwera Public Library

The Hāwera Public Library (now Hāwera LibraryPlus) in High Street has served the town for close to 125 years from the same building. It was built in 1896 and opened to the public in early November of that year.

It was designed by George Card and the contractors were Messrs MacIndoe and Carter. The other contactors involved in the project were: Mr. W Day (painting & decorating), Mr J.Makin (plumber) and Mr Whittington (bricklayer). 

The Hāwera Town Centre Heritage Inventory states that the building has undergone many internal

Charles Major Building.

Charles Major Building 

This small building on Princes Street is one of the row of heritage buildings that the writers of the Hawera Town Centre Heritage Inventory have described as being "unsurpassed in Taranaki" and of "national historical importance". 

William Furlong had a building erected on this site about 1881 and it's possible some of the original structure remains. However the elaborate facade was designed by George Card in 1895 after fire damaged much of the building. 

As may be expected for a building of this age, it has had a number of

Edmondston Building.

Edmondston Building 

This two-storey building in Princes Street stands next door to the Caplen Building, it boasts a similar neo-classic design to the neighbouring building, but is less impressive in scale.

Little is known about the date of construction, architect and builder. The Hawera Town Centre Heritage Inventory estimates that it was built between 1900 and 1910 - it must be after 1901 as it is not seen in the Auckland Weekly News photo of 'Caplen's Buildings'. (see linked topic)

The heritage inventor states that the building was erected for Harry Caplen (of  the

Caplen Building 1882.

Caplen Building 1882 

The Caplen Building (also known as Caplen's Buildings) stands in the centre of the photograph above, between Charles Major's offices on the left and the Edmondston Building on the right. Together with the the two bank buildings nearby they are described in the Hawera Town Centre Heritage Inventory as being part of a sequence of heritage buildings "unsurpassed in Taranaki and which has national importance."

The heritage inventory states that the building was erected in 1882 for the Mr Harry Caplen, a Hāwera lawyer who was

Bank of New South Wales 1910.

Bank of New South Wales 1910

The section this two-storey building stands on was purchased by the Bank of New South Wales in 1875 for £25. The building above was built in 1910 at a cost of £2,920. 

It is described in the Hāwera Town Centre Heritage Inventory as "a very competent piece of classical design by a nationally known firm of architects, Crighton and McKay. It has remained relatively unaltered in its main elevation, giving it remarkable authenticity for a commercial building of this age."

The inventory also notes

Contents by type

Random Image from the Archive

DP 2035.

Blank Play/Pause Slideshow. Next Image.