The two storey building is described in the Rangitikei Advocate of 15 February 1915 as a “massive brick building” and
“The front elevation to Broadway has an imposing and pleasing appearance, the plastered cornices, lintels, shields and pediment harmonising with the black-pointed brickwork. The verandah is suspended, being supported by girders and steel bars embedded and bolted through walls. The ceiling is lined with embossed steel and the structure officers no obstruction to traffic.
The architects for the building were Messrs James and Higgins in conjunction with Messrs Crichton and McKay. The contractors, Messrs Haddock and Hassal, have carried out their work in a faithful and workmanlike manner. The erection of the building was supervised by Mr Higgins; Messrs Tingey and Co., and Rees and Upchurch were the subcontractors for the painting and plumbing, respectively, which, needless to say, was executed in an excellent manner.”
The building has been designed in the Edwardian Free Classical style where Classical elements are used in a non-academic manner. The building shows characteristics of the style including symmetry, truncated parapets and pediments, unconventional classical orders and entablature combined with conventional classical elements.
The style was popular with architects who wished to base their designs upon classical architecture but were unwilling to have their architectural talents fettered by an academic approach to classicism. British architect Edwin Lutyens and American Frank Furness were influential in popularising the style, which they saw as a development towards a modern style.
The above verandah street elevation is the most significant element and includes:
exposed brickwork piers, walls, parapet;
rendered parapet, cornices, pediments, window heads jambs, sills and architraves, scroll brackets, shield decorative elements ;
timber joinery and flagpole;
verandah and supports.
Although not visible the rear elevation and roof are also of significance.
Please note that entry on the New Zealand Heritage List/Rarangi Korero identifies only the heritage values of the property concerned, and should not be construed as advice on the state of the property, or as a comment of its soundness or safety, including in regard to earthquake risk, safety in the event of fire, or insanitary conditions.