THIS BRITOMART BUILDING’S DIVERSE LIST OF FORMER TENANTS PROVIDES A PERFECT SNAPSHOT OF AUCKLAND’S HISTORY.
The original vacant site was leased by John Spedding in 1905, and later sold to Whangarei merchant Samuel Rawnsley.
Rawnsley chose the property to be the Auckland branch of his kauri gum business, and commissioned architect John Currie to design a three-storey building for the site.
In 1913 Rawnsley added a fourth storey, also designed by Currie, at a cost of £1,052. He later sold the building to grain and seed merchant Frank Winston for £11,000 in 1920.
In 1937 the building was purchased by the Newdick brothers, who made extensive alterations, including adding a bakery to the third floor. The brothers were cake manufacturers and produce merchants, and for a time the building carried their name.
When the Newdicks ceased trading in 1952, the New Zealand Government took over the lease and the Auckland Harbour Board Stores Department moved in. The building was subsequently occupied by freight forwarding company Altrans and the New Zealand Harbour Board Workers Union.
Later, as the nature of the waterfront changed, the building was acquired by Auckland City Council and Auckland Regional Council.
In recent times, the building has been cleaned out and leased on an interim basis. The Altrans Building is currently being fully renovated as part of the Britomart redevelopment programme.
Find The Altrans Building
104 Quay Street