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Avondale Historical Journal No. 57

Avondale Historical Journal No. 57

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Published by Lisa Truttman
Journal of the Avondale-Waterview Historical Society, Auckland, New Zealand
Journal of the Avondale-Waterview Historical Society, Auckland, New Zealand

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Categories:Types, Research, History
Published by: Lisa Truttman on Jan 10, 2011
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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The AvondaleHistorical Journal
January—February 2011
Volume 10 Issue 57
Official Publication of the Avondale-Waterview Historical  Society Incorporated 
Goodbye,Grosvenor Dairy,goodbye
In late October 2010, the Grosvenor Dairy next to theHollywood Cinema was demolished. More on the dairy’sstory inside (page 2).
Detail from 1950s photo, 580-1018, Sir George GreySpecial Collections, Auckland Library;
April 2010, courtesy Bill Ellis;
the dairy in 2001, LisaTruttman, from
 Heart of the Whau.
Next meeting of theAvondale-WaterviewHistorical Society:
Saturday, 5 February2011,2.30 pm
St Ninian’s Church
! See newsletter fordetails)St Georges Road, Avondale(opp. Hollywood Cinema)
Street by marksmen after a zoo or circus escape. Ithink they knew she was “fresh off the boat” and werepulling her leg.
Albert Kempton Turley and Osborne Edwin Turleyinherited the property in 1970 on Henry Whale’sdeath, and undertook a refurbishment of the old build-ing, according to Tony Goodwin. He worked on theproject, and recalls that the still existing house on thesite was purchased from James Davern, who in turnsaid that it came originally from the MangakinoPower Station works.
The dairy was a very small part of the AvondaleShopping Centre, but I’m sure it left memories behindfor those who wandered in during those years for apint, a loaf, or an ice cream.
The Avondale Historical Journal 
Volume 10 Issue 57
 Page 2
The site of the Grosvenor Dairy was originally part of John Shedden Adam’s 1843 farm. This portion waspurchased by James Palmer, the local hotelier, in thelate 1860s. After his sales and subdivisions from the1880s, a 1915 survey plan shows that the owner of the triangular site was then Mrs H Todd, while theoccupier was Mrs Heron.
Did Mrs Heron have a small house here? That isn’tcertain at this stage. There didn’t seem to be manyresidents on this side of St Georges Road from thePublic Hall to Chalmers Street up until much later inthe century.Soon after the redevelopment of the Town Hall andthe shifting of the wooden Public Hall in 1924, thedirectories list Henry Whale, brickmaker and his wifeRose Whale, confectioner, in the vicinity from c.1925.Could Henry Whale have worked as a brickmaker atthe Glenburn works? Henry and William Whale, bothlabourers, are recorded as living on the opposite sidefrom the brickworks in 1915.
It appears the Whales owned and operated their dairydown to the early 1950s. In 1955, Percy H Martin,confectioner, ran the business (but the Whales stillowned the building and property through to HenryWhale’s death in 1969 aged 77. His wife Rose prede-ceased him in 1959, aged 63.) By 1959, Alan RWilliams had the dairy, followed by (or possibly inconjunction with) Ray Rummins of R & Z RumminsLtd. By 1963, the dairy was operated by G & A Boyle& Co, Ltd, the in 1965 Campbell Enterprises Ltd.From 1969, it became known in the directories simplyas the Grosvenor Dairy, a name it had had since theTown Hall Cinema became the Grosvenor in the early1950s. For a time this century, it was named Eftpos.The dairy was in a prime position in the early days of the cinema, before Jan Grefstad introduced his own in-house sales counter for ice creams and other cinematicsnacks in the 1960s. Before then, it was a rush out thedoor at the interval to Mrs Whale’s, buying thegoodies before the programme inside recommenced.The dairy featured during the cinema’s fire of June1939, when customers escaping the flames landed onthe dairy’s roof.
My mother Joan Truttman arrived in Auckland in June1958, and her first job here was working for AlanWilliams and Ray Rummins. She said either Rumminsor both of them were storytellers — one tale she neverforgot was a yarn about a lion being shot on St Judes
5 November 2010. All that remains of the Grosvenor Dairyis a line of old footings, and a shadow on the wall of the Hollywood where the old building was in the way of therecent paint job there. Lisa Truttman photo.
Goodbye, Grosvenor Dairy,goodbye
 Lisa J Truttman
This was received in response to Sylvia Thomas’article in Issue 55 last year — Editor.
Thank you Sylvia for your interesting article. We didmeet once at the Donaldson’s next door to you andyour sister Wilma. I was 3 or 4 and my mother,brother Gavin (in a pram) and I paid a visit to LittleAuntie Florrie to see her new baby boy (Barry). I wassent out the back into the orchard to play withMaureen. There was a collie dog called Kingi chainedto a tree and I was terrified of it. We never went thereagain. I think that the Donaldsons rented this placebecause soon afterwards Uncle Roy started to build afibrolite house on Uncle Harvey Greep’s property inBlockhouse Bay Road.
I think Mrs Scott was my mother’s washing and scrub-bing lady. I remember that she came on a bike about
New Windsor Road
 by Robin Fazakerley
The Avondale Historical Journal 
Volume 10 Issue 57
 Page 3
8.00 am and in the 4 hours that she stayed did anenormous amount of work. This consisted of filling andlighting the copper and boiling, rinsing, blueing andwringing the clothes (sheets etc, towels, as well as per-sonal clothes), pegging them on the line, emptying thecopper then sweeping the house (this included brushingthe 2 carpet squares with a corn broom), dusting, andscrubbing the kitchen, bathroom, and verandahs withthe soapy copper water. I think she also made the bedsand did some ironing if there was any time left. All thisfor 2/6 [around $22 today— Ed.]. I remember she leftwhen she was called up to work in the ColonialAmmunition Factory in Mt Eden Quarry, next to theprison. By 1940-41 so many men were fighting over-seas so women were required by law to fill the gaps. Inever knew this lady’s name, nor was I ever allowed tospeak to her.
Madge Hoyle sang in St Jude’s Choir in the 1940s.When I went to Teacher’s College in 1951 she was myfirst “crit” teacher. I was quite friendly with Madge andoccasionally I visited the Hoyles. Mr Hoyle was a dearold man with a beard who looked like Santa Claus. MrsHoyle was a small bird-like woman, sharp-tongued anddetermined. Millicent had left home and was the partnerof Phoebe Meikle. Both taught at Takapuna Grammar.Madge at this time was Infant Mistress at Glen EdenPrimary. She also sang in the Auckland Choral Society(conductor then was Georg Tintner). Georg had a chook farm up Forest Hill Road in Glen Eden (Oratia?) anddelivered eggs to both the Hoyles and the van Leyden’sin Batkin Road.
When Christobel Ash’s father died she had a friend, IrisSparrow, to live with her. They later went to live inNelson, to join an Arts Group there. I think my firstFrench teacher at Auckland Diocesan, Brenda de Butts,also joined this group. Brenda worked in the Censor’sOffice during the war.
Mildred Spargo lived in Batkin Ave opposite the vanLeydens. Batkin Ave, in those days, was a long cul-de-sac. On the same side as the van Leydens lived theWrights, City Councillor Mary Wright, daughterCharmaine, and their extensive row of glasshouses.They grew tomatoes for the markets.
The van Leydens had emigrated from Batavia, Java(now Jakarta, Indonesia) about 1937. Piet van Leydenhad been in banking and his wife Jeanne, daughtersIneke, Jessie and Saskia. I met this family when Istayed with the Crums at Piha (August 1943). Mr vanLeyden died c.1943 and Jeanne let their glass house tothe Wrights. As Jeanne had studied piano with Dirk Schaeffer in Amsterdam she began to teach piano. Iwent to her in 1952 and “did” Gr 8 R. Schools andstarted to prepare my L.R.S.M. with her. They returnedto Holland in 1956 and first lived in Bussem then inLaren – Raboes 9. I stayed with them in Laren 1984 butlost contact with them about 1988 when Jeanne died atthe age of 94.
In 1953 I attended the Ad. Ed course in German atAuckland University. Jock Asher, who lived in NewWindsor Road, was Professor of German at this time.His classes were very lively and he entertained us withhorrendous stories of smuggling coffee into Berlin.(Remember the Berlin Blockade after 1945?) I visitedJock and his wife one morning with Dr Olga Semon. Theconversation was all in German so I didn’t understandmuch. Prof. Asher was Jewish, and Dr Semon, a refugeefrom Nazi Germany, was a “mischling”. Olga was NewLynn’s GP until May 1954. Innes Asher would be one of this couple’s children. I think her brother is JusticeAsher. There is a strong likeness to his father.
Sylvia mentioned the itinerant vendors. In Taylor Street,before the war, we had:
Mr Johnson
– the milkman who came night and morn-ing. He had an A1 tested Jersey herd and I think his farmwas along Donovan Street.
Mr Foreman
– the butcher in Blockhouse Bay Road.His boy would deliver orders on a butcher’s bike, amodified bike with a big iron square over the frontwheel. A big wicker basket was put in this which heldthe orders. (Dr Semon, as she was an enemy alien duringthe war, used one to visit her patients. Her maternity bagfitted nicely into the basket.)
Mr Spragg
– greengrocer, Great North Road, Avondale.His van was requisitioned by the Army at the outbreak of war.
Buchanan’s Bread
— we used to get
½ brown and ½
white loaf daily.
The Rawleigh’s Man.The Rag & Bone Man
— for some reason I found thisIndian man terrifying and I used to hide under my bed.
Sylvia mentions earth floor. The houses were built thatway. Most houses had bare floors—usually dark stained.When we moved into 68 Taylor Street, in 1934, myfather sold his baby Austin and bought a piano, 2 carpetsquares, 2 lino squares and a small lino remnant for thebathroom. The slump bit hard into people’s lives — a lotof people were almost destitute. I know that some of myclassmates at Blockhouse Bay Primary lived in unlinedgarages without toilet or washing facilities. We did nothave mains sewerage in Taylor Street until I was about 7.We had an outhouse and my father had to bury thecontents of the can. We did have electricity, an electricstove (a Moffat), a toaster and an iron. But my fatherearned £3 a week [$264 today — Ed.], in the ASB, avery good wage then. I think the dole was 10/- [$44 intoday’s money — Ed.] and the old age pension about thesame. (No, we didn’t have a radio.)

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