Topic: L. H. Johnson Motors Ltd., Devon Street East (1929)

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Johnson Motors Ltd..   

On 10 October, 1929 a permit was issued to Stainton & Co. for business premises on the corner of Gover and Devon Street East. The contractors were Boon Bros and the estimated price was £1,875. It was designed by Messenger, Griffths and Taylor.

A futher permit for 'additions' (probably for the Gover St section of the building) was granted to L. H. Johnson Motors by the Borough Council on 22 March 1934 - the builder was S. R. Smith, and the estimated construction cost was £1900. 

The firm Stainton and Co., who had agencies for trucks and motorcycles, were closely connected with L. H.Johnson Motors Ltd. and it's quite likely they shared business premises. A photo taken in 1938 (see below) shows by this time the corner service station was owned by L. H.Johnson Ltd. Alterations were carried out in 1955 by Boon Bros. Ltd and at some date the pumps were removed.

Johnson Motors 1938 

August 1938 View from the Fred Butler Album

For more information please refer to the publication, "Expanding with Taranaki: The First Fifty Years of L. H.Johnson Motors Ltd". Available in the Taranaki Research Centre (TRCT658.89 HOB). See also a supplement in the Taranaki Herald on 5 May, 1969, celebrating their 50th jubilee.

In 1975 the building was sold to an Eltham business partnership, Plymouth Developments for $250,000. The linked newspaper report, "New Owners For NP Premises", includes a drawing of intended alterations to the building. It appears these external changes did not take place.

In more recent times the firm, "Para Rubber', traded from the premises until their closure in 2009 . Their sign -  now painted over - is still visible on the upper facade.

The present (2015) tenant is the gift/novelty/clothing shop 'Best 4 Less".


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