Capitol Theatre

610-620 Dominion Road, Mt Eden, Auckland

  • Capitol Theatre.
    Copyright: NZ Historic Places Trust. Taken By: Martin Jones. Date: 24/10/2009.

List Entry Information

List Entry Status Listed List Entry Type Historic Place Category 2 Public Access Private/No Public Access
List Number 508 Date Entered 26th November 1981

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Extent of List Entry

Extent includes the land described as Lot 1 DP 59284 (CT NA14D/1376), North Auckland Land District, and the buildings known as Capitol Theatre thereon

City/District Council

Auckland Council (Auckland City Council)

Region

Auckland Council

Legal description

Lot 1 DP 59284 (CT NA14D/1376), North Auckland Land District

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Grierson, Aimer & Draffin

Hugh Cresswell Grierson (1886-1953) was practising as an architect prior to the First World War. He served in the New Zealand Army and remained overseas to continue his studies at the Architectural Association in London. He became an Associate of the Royal Institute of British Architects. He returned to New Zealand and went into partnership with Kenneth Walter Aimer (1891-1960), a fellow student in London.

Aimer was educated at Auckland Teachers' Training College and Auckland University College. He became a registered architect in 1918, and later travelled to England to continue his studies. He became an Associate of the Royal Institute of British Architects in 1925.

Malcolm Keith Draffin (1890-1964) was in partnership with Edward Bartley and his son Alva when the First World War began. Draffin served in the army and was awarded the Military Cross. He remained in London after the war to study at the Architectural Association, and was elected a Fellow of the Royal Institute of British Architects. Following Edward Bartley's death in 1919, Alva Bartley and Draffin dissolved the partnership.

The Auckland Institute and Museum complex was the major work of the firm, for which they were awarded a Gold Medal by the New Zealand Institute of Architects in 1929. The firm's other work includes the South British Insurance Company, Shortland Street and a number of cinema's including the Capitol, Dominion Rd (1922), the Rialto, Newmarket (1923), the Collosseum/Majestic, Queen Street (1924) and the Edendale cinema (1926). They were one of the first Auckland firms to adopt the Art Deco style popular in America, as can be seen in the Gifford's Building (1929), and they also designed in the Stripped Neo-Classical style as seen in the Northcote War Memorial Pavilion (1922) and the Parnell Library (1923).

The Depression halted most building activity and as a result the partnership was disbanded. Draffin and Aimer practised separately while Grierson took up farming.

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Construction Dates

Original Construction
1923 -

Other Information

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.