Topic: Strandon Place (TDN 01/11/2014)

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Strandon Place 

As with the suburb it is currently in, this street was named after Strandon House, a fine building that was renovated in 1917 as prime accommodation for students boarding at New Plymouth Girls' High School. It was located at the end of Ronald St and was a huge improvement on Quilliam House that had been used previously.

Principal Miss Rhoda Barr was to describe it as somewhere where boarders could "enjoy more than hitherto a home away from home". The Daily News reported that it "is situated close to the Fitzroy railway station and within easy distance of the school on Mangorei Road". It could accommodate 27 boarders and three teachers and sounded positively palatial. The interior was finished with fine carpets and good furniture, while large windows meant plenty of light and good ventilation.

By 1918 however, applications to board at the school had risen from 25 to 43. The High School Board reported that it was negotiating to lease more space, both in the house of Mr George King next door, and some in town. Miss Barr had also proposed rearranging Strandon to accommodate eight more girls. For the future, they let a contract to Boon Bros to build a removable dormitory which would expand accommodation to 50 boarders. This also gave them the option to shift the new building when the lease ran out on Strandon.

Eventually, with the roll doubling in the five years from 1920-1925 and the boarding house "bursting at the seams", the Old Girls' Association began fund raising for a new boarding house. So in February 1928, 'Scotlands' Hostel was opened on land adjacent to the school and Strandon House was no longer required.

Strandon House was eventually demolished in 1955 when a Mr N T Tailby began subdividing the area.

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