Topic: 15 Lismore Street, Part Fitzroy Suburban 88 (1860s)

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A circa 1860s former farmhouse clad in vertical board and batten

15 Lismore Street - front

This former farmhouse is a rare surviving New Plymouth building clad in vertical board and batten constructed in the 1860s following the conclusion of the Taranaki Wars. Darius Shuttleworth and his family may have occupied the home from the 1860s until the 1890s. 

Construction and design 

It's thought the original section of the home is the rear section, which retains its original Kauri vertical board and batten cladding, and original six-pane double hung sash windows typical of the period. The design of the building is of two parallel east-west gables, joined by a third north-south gable. Buildings of this style usually have the front entrance on the side with the connecting gable - so it's thought the entrance may have originally faced West (Mangorei Road), and was shifted to the Lismore Street frontage following the construction of the 'addition', probably in the late Nineteenth or early Twentieth Century. 

Board and batten homes in the style of the original section were once common in New Plymouth. Until recently three surviving examples from the 1860s were known to exist. However two have sadly been demolished recently (78 Young Street demolished 2016, and 70 Powderham Street demolished 2014) - this leaves 15 Lismore street as the only surviving example of this design of board and batten clad home in New Plymouth (and New Zealand!). For a similar roof design, but clad in plain weatherboard see 7 Harbour Street (the only other home with this roof style surviving in New Plymouth).

History of Section 88

Fitzroy Suburban Section 88 was subdivided at an early date and the history of each section is unclear. However it appears that the Shuttleworth Brothers (Alexander, Darius and Walter), were awarded the original Crown Grant for the land the house is on in 1865 - Darius signed the deed. However, it is thought that they had all occupied various parts of section 88 prior to the award of the Crown Grant, and before the outbreak of war - it is thought all the Shuttleworth brothers had homes on their sections, and that these were destroyed in the early years of the war. 

Whilst all the brothers left the Henui during the wars, it appears Darius may have returned afterwards, with an advertisment in 1873 advertising for sale the property of late Mr Gollop at Henui, "next to Mr. D. Shuttleworth's". Darius was the only brother to marry and it is suggested the home was probably occupied by him and his family. 

This building is quite large for a farmhouse of the period, and may reflect the wealth of the owner - Darius Shuttleworth and his brothers established Shuttleworth Bros in 1863 during a period when they left their farms at Te Henui and returned to town during the Taranaki Wars. The firm seems to have prospered - particulary in the period following the wars. However, many other farmers were struggling in this period and the Taranaki economy in general was in a depressed state. 

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15 Lismore Street, Part Fitzroy Suburban 88 (1860s)

City:New Plymouth