The Motor Car Comes To AvondaleThe Motor Car Comes To AvondaleThe Motor Car Comes To AvondaleThe Motor Car Comes To Avondale
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The Avondale Historical Journal Official Publication of the
Volume 1 Issue 6
From the earliest days of European settlement of theWhau District, the horse was the primary mode of transport if you didn’t want to or was unable to useyour own feet and walk. Deliver-ies came by horse and cart, thebuses were pulled by horsestaking you into the City, horseand rider made their way alongthe rutted roads and tracks towardparties, gatherings, and churchservices. Blacksmiths and horse-feed sellers reigned supreme, andstables were just as much land-marks as the local pub.In the 20th century, all this changed.In 1903, the first motor cars appeared in Auckland.It was another decade before they started taking overfrom the horse as the main form of transport forboth commercial and private use, but from 1915 thetrend was growing.Where in 1912, the Station Store and Bluck's Build-ings had been built to take advantage of foot trafficfrom the Railway Station just across the road -- bythe end of World War I, the pattern had changed.With the coming of the motor car, Great North Roadbecame the new centre of Avondale.By 1919 Avondale businessman Ernest Goodmanwas up with the play as far as the motor car was con-cerned.
“Avondale to the Beaches by Motor – E Goodmanwishes to notify the public of Avondale that he is pre- pared to convey parties to Blockhouse Bay, Point Chevalier etc. by motor at times to suit customers.Fares as per arrangement. A trip will run daily from Avondale to Mt Albert at 10.0 a.m. Fare 6d, leavingThode’s corner.”
Advertisement, The News, 29/3/19]
From then on, Mr Goodman’s taxis became part of the Avondale landscape.The motor car was starting to change the way Avon-dale people did business by this time. There was theAvondale Motor Delivery Service.
“Notice is hereby given that a quick Motor DeliveryService between Avondale and Auckland will bestarted from about April 7th, when necessary tripswill be made twice daily. Passenger traffic to bays, picnics etc. will also be catered for, accommodationbeing provided for 15 passengers. Norman Thomas,Great North Rd, Avon-dale.”
[Advertisement, The News, 29/3/19]
Mr Goodman was not the onlyone in town with the idea of ferrying people in the new-fangled innovation. A MrMcCarthy of Station Road (nowBlockhouse Bay Road, nearWalsall St) initially had a fishselling business (he owned hisown boat) but then branched out into the funeralconveyancing business, and as a charabanc driver.
“During the 1920s a number of commercial garageswere established in the district…. Stewart’s,Trigg’s, In St Jude’s Street was Bamford’s AvondaleService Station. A 1926 Automobile Associationguide stated that: ‘This garage is situated below therailway crossing on the hill above Avondale on theroad to Mt Albert. Watch out for trains.’”
[Challenge of the Whau, p. 74]
One of the early garages belonged to J Blomley.
“J Blomley – Motor & General Engineer – Bring your cars, motor cycles, or other mechanical work tothe above, where you will receive every attention,good workmanship and prompt delivery at rock bot-tom prices. All work guaranteed. Workshop & ga-rages, adjoining Wm. Pendlebury’s, Draper, Great North Road, Avondale.”
[Advertisement, The News, 28/8/15]
Wherever the motor car went, you needed the peopleto fix them.
“Machinery owners and users of motor cars haveoften felt the want of a local engineering establish-ment when necessity has arisen for repairs. It istherefore pleasing to record that Messrs. P J Cooper & Sons will in a few days open those premises ad- joining the new Masonic Hall, Rosebank road, Avon-dale (just below Messrs. Thode Bros’ store) as ageneral engineering shop. We have every confidencein soliciting work for the new firm as we know Mr Cooper has had an extended experience in allbranches of engineering, including motors, millmachinery, suction gas plants and steam, gas and oil