Topic: R.A.Nolan Building 1919 (12 Union Street)

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R.A.Nolan Building

This two-storey building stands next to the Hawera Foundries Building (linked) in Union Street. It was designed in 1919 by the same architects, Duffill & Gibson, although of quite a different design to the neighbouring building. The contractor was Mr E.A.Pacey.

It was built for R.H.Nolan, of the firm Nolan & Tonks, prominent Hawera stock auctioneers and land agents. However, a note on the original plans indicates that it was to be occupied by R.Morrissey & Company. 

Sir Robert Howard Nolan (1855 - 1923) was born in Australia and came to New Zealand as a young boy with his family. Eventually he settled in Hawera and became a senior partner in Nolan & Tonks. He was well-known in the town for his work with the hospital and the Egmont Racing Club. Nolan spent the First World War in London as honorary secretary and officer in charge of the New Zealand Soldiers' Club, roles he was widely praised for. He returned to New Zealand in 1920 and settled in Auckland. He was awarded a Knighthood in June 1923 and died the following month. 

Puke Ariki holds the plans (ARC2003-1051) for the original building, as well as alterations carried out in 1922 and 1927, also designed by Duffill & Gibson. 

The Hawera Town Centre Heritage Inventory praises the building for its largely unaltered upper facade and for the contrast in style with the later neighbouring Duffill & Gibson design. 

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