ANZ Bank (Former)

142 Marine Parade, Wairoa

  • ANZ Bank (Former).
    Copyright: NZ Historic Places Trust. Taken By: Alison Dangerfield. Date: 28/05/2008.

List Entry Information

List Entry Status Listed List Entry Type Historic Place Category 2 Public Access Able to Visit
List Number 4856 Date Entered 27th November 1986


Extent of List Entry

Extent includes the land described as Lot 2 DP 6226 (RT HB90/202), Hawkes Bay Land District, and the building known as ANZ Bank (Former) thereon.

City/District Council

Wairoa District


Hawke's Bay Region

Legal description

Lot 2 DP 6226 (RT HB90/202), Hawkes Bay Land District


The former ANZ Bank in Wairoa, designed by notable Wellington architecture firm Penty & Lawrence and constructed in 1915, was the original premises of the Union Bank of Australia. The building has architectural significance as an intact example of a small town rural banking chamber. The stripped-back Italinate design demonstrates how classical architectual elements were used to make a building look solid and reliable. The building has historic significance as a reflection of small town development and local social significance through the provision of banking services for over 80 years and its recent adaptation into the Wairoa museum. It contributes to the heritage landscape of Wairoa town centre.

The Union Bank of Australia was New Zealand’s first trading bank, opening in in 1840. In 1951 it merged with the Bank of Australasia to create the ANZ Bank. The Union Bank opened its Wairoa branch in January 1910 in a leased wooden building on Marine Parade. In May 1914 the section at 142 Marine Parade was purchased and construction of the new bank was completed on 16 April 1915. It is likely the building was designed by notable architect Charles Alexander Lawrence of Penty & Lawrence. He had a long association with the Union Bank of Australia, designing branches in Hamilton (1912), Hastings (1914), Palmerston North (1910-11) and Newtown, Wellington (1926).

The Marine Parade façade is comprised of the banking chambers with the main front entrance, and an adjoining east wing. Constructed out of rendered masonry, the façade includes a decorative denticulate cornice. The two doors on the front have moulded facings and intricate swags. Keystones adorn the tops of the doors and all three front windows. The east wing of the building was originally designed as self-contained solicitors’ office for local firm Sandman and Lynch. This is used as two exhibition rooms, an office and staffroom, which all contain the original fireplaces and mantels. These rooms and the banking chamber retain the original pressed tin ceilings, moulded timber skirting and architraves.

The building functioned as the ANZ Bank until 1998, when it was purchased by the Wairoa District Heritage and Museum Trust for a new museum. It underwent conversion and structural strengthening and opened as a museum in December 2001. In 2006 a 190msq extension to the back of the building was completed, doubling the floor area and allowing for a new exhibition space, workshop, archive storage and utility areas. These alterations have not compromised its heritage value and have ensured its continued use and maintenance. Today the museum hosts displays on the Māori and Pākehā history of Wairoa and has a strong collection of Māori taonga, confirming the building’s place at the heart of the Wairoa community.


Construction Professionalsopen/close

Penty & Lawrence

No biography is currently available for this construction professional

Begley, J.

No biography is currently available for this construction professional

Additional informationopen/close

Construction Dates

1999 - 2001
Strengthened and interior refurbished to become the Wairoa Museum

- 2006
Extension to back of the building

Completion Date

4th April 2019

Report Written By

Jessica McDonnell-Buwalda

Information Sources

Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand

Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand

Tripe, David, ‘Banking and finance’, Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, March 11, 2010,

Wairoa District Council

Wairoa District Council

Wairoa District Council, ‘Wairoa Museum’,

Salmond, 1999 (2)

Salmond Architects, A Conservation Plan for the former ANZ Bank Wairoa, Salmond Architects: Auckland, 1999

Other Information

A fully referenced upgrade report is available on request from the Central Regional Office of Heritage New Zealand.

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.