Central News 17 June 2021
Designed by Public Works Department architect in 1909, the St Bathans Post Office has gained a category 1 heritage listing in recognition of its outstanding and nationally significant interior. Heritage New Zealand assessment adviser, Sarah Gallagher, said the post office was a “rare and outstanding example of Victorian Post Office with the majority of the public and private residential space largely intact. Elements of the building included period wallpapers, a lead bathroom floor, patterned glass and fire escapes.”
Located on Department of Conservation Land, the two-story building has an chequered history:
- It was the second post office on the site operating from 1909 until 1937
- From 1937 until 1981 it was a private residence
- Since 1981 it has been a historic reserve.
- In 2011, a proposal to convert the building was stymied by the local community. This proposal would have resulted in the removal of original heritage fabric, fixtures and fittings.
- In 2020 the St Bathans Area Community Association was given a 10-year concession from DOC to use the building as a community space.
Take a tour of the building here.