Volume 1 Issue 6

July – August 2002

The Avondale
Historical Journal
Official Publication of the Avondale-Waterview
Historical Society Incorporated

WE ARE NOW

INCORPORATED!

Inside this issue:
A note from
our Society’s
President

1

Membership
Fees

1

The Motor Car
Comes to
Avondale

2–4

Judges Bay
History
&
The Mighty
Wurlitzer!

On June 5, 2002, the Avondale Waterview Historical Society became an
Incorporated Society, registered with the Companies Office.

4

President’s Notes
Whoa! At long last we have a historical society in Avondale and Waterview. It
was great to see people lining up to pay their fees at the end of the meeting. I
would like to thank all those people who came out on Sat 1st June in such terrible weather. Also, those who put their names forward for office and committee, and a special thanks to Liz Clark, our secretary, who came from Helensville to be with us. Thanks, Liz!
During the weeks before the meeting, I have been taking a lot of photos of the
old buildings around Avondale. The dairy where you shop, you may not realise, has been there for a hundred years in one form or another. I also took
photos of the old packing sheds and trees on Kurt Brehmer’s property, including an old pear tree which according to Mr Brehmer was introduced by Hayward Wright and is the only one of its kind in existence.
We now look forward to the spring with visits to other historical societies and
their museums. Lastly, I would like to thank you all for your support and will
do my very best for the Avondale-Waterview Historical Society. Thank you.
— Bruce Spencer

Membership Information: Fees
The second meeting of the AWHS Society set the
following membership fee rates for the coming year:
Individual
Family
Group/Corporate

$10
$15
(to be decided soon)

As we now have our own bank account, cheques for
membership fees may be made out to:
“Avondale-Waterview Historical Society”.
A receipt will be provided.

The Avondale Historical Journal

Volume 1 Issue 6

Official Publication of the

Page 2

The Motor Car Comes To Avondale (part 1)
From the earliest days of European settlement of the
Whau District, the horse was the primary mode of
transport if you didn’t want to or was unable to use
your own feet and walk. Deliveries came by horse and cart, the
buses were pulled by horses
taking you into the City, horse
and rider made their way along
the rutted roads and tracks toward
parties, gatherings, and church
services. Blacksmiths and horsefeed sellers reigned supreme, and
stables were just as much landmarks 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 over
from the horse as the main form of transport for
both commercial and private use, but from 1915 the
trend was growing.
Where in 1912, the Station Store and Bluck's Buildings had been built to take advantage of foot traffic
from the Railway Station just across the road -- by
the end of World War I, the pattern had changed.
With the coming of the motor car, Great North Road
became the new centre of Avondale.
By 1919 Avondale businessman Ernest Goodman
was up with the play as far as the motor car was concerned.
“Avondale to the Beaches by Motor – E Goodman
wishes to notify the public of Avondale that he is prepared 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, leaving
Thode’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 Avondale people did business by this time. There was the
Avondale Motor Delivery Service.
“Notice is hereby given that a quick Motor Delivery
Service between Avondale and Auckland will be
started from about April 7th, when necessary trips

will be made twice daily. Passenger traffic to bays,
picnics etc. will also be catered for, accommodation
being provided for 15 passengers. Norman Thomas,
Great North Rd, Avondale.” [Advertisement, The
News, 29/3/19]
Mr Goodman was not the only
one in town with the idea of
ferrying people in the newfangled innovation. A Mr
McCarthy of Station Road (now
Blockhouse Bay Road, near
Walsall St) initially had a fish
selling business (he owned his
own boat) but then branched out into the funeral
conveyancing business, and as a charabanc driver.
“During the 1920s a number of commercial garages
were established in the district…. Stewart’s,
Trigg’s, In St Jude’s Street was Bamford’s Avondale
Service Station. A 1926 Automobile Association
guide stated that: ‘This garage is situated below the
railway crossing on the hill above Avondale on the
road 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 to
the above, where you will receive every attention,
good workmanship and prompt delivery at rock bottom prices. All work guaranteed. Workshop & garages, adjoining Wm. Pendlebury’s, Draper, Great
North Road, Avondale.” [Advertisement, The News,
28/8/15]
Wherever the motor car went, you needed the people
to fix them.
“Machinery owners and users of motor cars have
often felt the want of a local engineering establishment when necessity has arisen for repairs. It is
therefore pleasing to record that Messrs. P J Cooper
& Sons will in a few days open those premises adjoining the new Masonic Hall, Rosebank road, Avondale (just below Messrs. Thode Bros’ store) as a
general engineering shop. We have every confidence
in soliciting work for the new firm as we know
Mr Cooper has had an extended experience in all
branches of engineering, including motors, mill
machinery, suction gas plants and steam, gas and oil

The Avondale Historical Journal

Volume 1 Issue 6

Official Publication of the

engines. Repairs to agricultural and milking
chinery will also be a speciality with the new
firm.”
[The News, 28/8/19]

Page 3
ma-

end of the Henderson Township. Each Town
Board's ratepayers bore the cost for their own
section of the new highway.” [Henderson’s
Mill, Anthony Flude, 1977]

This was at 79 Rosebank Road. Unfortunately, the optimism in the above piece didn’t keep the business going beyond the middle of the 1920s, with the rise of
Triggs Garage and Stuarts,
both on the main road

“Work on the construction of the first section
of the concrete highway at Oakley Creek to
Lincoln Road, Henderson, is to be commenced
on Monday, when the paving gangs will start
operations in the Avondale district. The point
of commencement will be at Blake St Avondale, and the paving will be pushed on as far
as the Whau Creek bridge, after which the section from Blake St to Oakley Creek will be undertaken.

“ ...early cars
had headlights
on "stalks"
which bobbed
up and down
as the cars
negotiated the
rough track from
Avondale ...”

The site between the intersection and the Masonic Hall
would be vacant until Forsyth’s Coal Yard in the 1930s.
Rough rutted roads were hard
enough going for the horse and
cart. For the motor car they
used up precious benzine and
petrol. Mrs Shaw, telling me
of her memories of the days of
the rough road through the
centre of Avondale, said that
the early cars had headlights
on "stalks" which bobbed up
and down as the cars negotiated the rough track from
Avondale down the hill to the
Whau Creek bridge -- which was, itself, then only a
one-lane bridge.
In 1925, came the next big change for Avondale's
transport history.
“There was a
great deal of
development
during 1925. At
a meeting in
Auckland on
February 28th,
it was approved
by all the town
boards involved, that
they would
build a concrete
road over the
often impassable clay road
from Oakley
Creek at Point
Chevalier, all
the way to the

Form of construction will be a complete
departure from anything yet done in New
Zealand. The flanges of the roadway would be
arched, the edges being thicker than the centre of the roadway, thus giving more strength
at the point where the greatest weight of traffic is supported. The system is based on recent
tests carried out in Illinois.”
(continued on page 4)
(from page 3)
Work began March 2, 1925. The New Lynn
section
started approximately on June 1, Glen Eden
September 1, and Henderson December 1.

From a newspaper of the time (unknown source) -- Courtesy of Mr and Mrs M and I
Fearon. ("Dad's Shop" is the grocer's shop of Mr Charles Hieatt)

Volume 1 Issue 6
Page 4
The Motor Car Comes To Avondale
(part 1 – continued)
[NZ Herald, 28/2/25]
“The excavation of the bed for the concrete highway
from Avondale to Henderson commenced at the beginning of the month, and a start to be made on laying the concrete in about 10 days. A new concretemixer is to be employed on the job.
[NZ Herald, 20/3/25]
By the end of 1925, motor cars could travel
smoothly from Henderson through to Pt Chevalier,
and
Auckland's suburbs, such as Avondale, began to
grow in earnest.

The Art and History of Judges Bay
Rendell McIntosh is the contact for the on-going and
very successful research project currently underway
in the Judges Bay area of Parnell. Rendell plans to
have the research culminate in a wonderful book
entitled The Art and History of Judges Bay.
If you have information, photos, or simply stories to
tell about Judges Bay, contact Rendell McIntosh,
phone 302-0405, email rendell@nzevents.co.nz

Avondale’s Wurlitzer Concerts 2002
Upcoming concerts involving the mighty Wurlitzer
at the Hollywood Cinema, St Georges Road Avondale:
June 30
2 pm
John Atwell with Tama Karena
August 25
2 pm
Chris Powell and “Blackpool style” entertainment.
October 13
2 pm
Jazz organist Dan Bellomy and Bruce King on
drums
And celebration concerts on November 9 and 10,
for the 20th anniversary of the coming of the
Wurlitzer to Avondale.

(Part Two in next issue.)

Further information: contact Peggy Hassall, ph 6205953.

The Avondale Historical Journal

Websites:

Published by the Avondale-Waterview Historical Society Inc.
Editor: Lisa J. Truttman, 19 Methuen Road, Avondale, Auckland
Phone: (09) 828-8494, Fax: (09) 828-8497, email: historian@avondale.org.nz
Rimtark
www.geocities.com/rimtark/index.html
Earth Settler
www.earthsettler.tripod.com/esindex/earthsettlerhome.htm
Archive Room
www.geocities.com/archiveroom/

Printed by

Avondale Photo Centre,
1962 Great North Road,

Avondale-Waterview Historical
Society Inc. Committee 2002/2003:
President
Treasurer
Secretary

Bruce Spencer
Alison Turner
Elizabeth Clark

The Society and editorial
staff thank

Historical
Research Officer:

Lisa Truttman

for their continued support
and sponsorship of this
publication.

Committee:
Ngaire Bishop
Robert Browne
Eileen Browne
Robert Chisholm
Dorothy Maddock

Avondale Business
Association

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