Tauranga Bond Store

1 The Strand; Anson Street, Tauranga

  • Tauranga Bond Store.
    Copyright: Sun Media Ltd. Date: 9/09/2008.

List Entry Information

List Entry Status Listed List Entry Type Historic Place Category 1 Public Access Private/No Public Access
List Number 7738 Date Entered 4th April 2008


Extent of List Entry

Registration includes the land described as Allots 4-5, Sec 1, Town of Tauranga (CT SA689/24), South Auckland Land District, and the building known as the Tauranga Store thereon, and its fittings and fixtures. It does not include the conservatory structure attached to the east wall or the other buildings and structures on site. (Refer to Extent of Registration Map in Appendix 1 for further information.)

City/District Council

Tauranga City


Bay of Plenty Region

Legal description

Allots 4 - 5, Sec 1, Town of Tauranga (CT SA689/24), South Auckland Land District

Location description

The Tauranga Bond Store is located at the north end of The Strand, Tauranga, on the corner of The Strand and Monmouth Street. Monmouth Street exists here only as a steep footpath down from the main part of Monmouth Street. The rear of the property extends through to the north end of Anson Street.


The Tauranga Bond Store was built for James Alexander Mann in 1883 as a warehouse and bond store for storing imported goods.

Mann foresaw Tauranga's potential as a major port facilitating freight traffic into and out of the district including the Rotorua area. The Bond Store was situated on the waterfront approximately 300 and 500 metres from the two wharves which were the main entry place for goods arriving at Tauranga until the railway and better roads were constructed. Mann & Co. developed as a retail store for general hardware, furniture, agricultural machinery, gardening tools and grocery items as well as liquor and tobacco.

James Mann sold the business in 1908 (and the property three years later) to Guinness Bros., a local firm of general merchants who used it for storage and administration of their business, which included wholesale wines and spirits. As importers, producers and stockists of agricultural equipment, Guinness Bros. played an essential role in the development of the Bay of Plenty's agricultural industry. Guinness Bros. added a small shop on the Bond Store's southern side and a workshop and bulk store at the rear. The shop was later greatly enlarged and re-built of more substantial materials. It served as the main retail area of their business for many decades.

In 1986 Hughes & Cossar, also wine and spirits dealers, took over the property; subsequently it was leased and occupied by Saunderson Packaging and from 1987-1997 by Tulloch Photography. In late 1997 the ground floor of the building was refurbished as a restaurant and bar. The retail shop was demolished in c.1997 and replaced with a conservatory-style annex on the southern side. At some time the upper floor was leased as office space and since the late 1990s has been used by Creative Tauranga as administration and gallery space.

The Bond Store is the oldest remaining commercial building in Tauranga and a reminder of the period when Tauranga was heavily dependent on its port for freight. The building functioned as a storage place for imported goods that required the payment of import duties; these were collected on behalf of the customs department by the bond-holder. The Tauranga bond store is one of only a few bond stores remaining in New Zealand.

Assessment criteriaopen/close

Historical Significance or Value

The Tauranga Bond Store reflects a period of New Zealand's history when all imported goods were received by sea. In the late 19th - early 20th centuries the waterfront was the main point of commercial contact for Tauranga people and businesses with the rest of the colony, particularly Auckland. The Tauranga Bond Store was one of the many buildings and structures associated with wharf development in the former Port of Tauranga prior to the development of facilities at Mt Maunganui.

The Tauranga Bond Store is the only building in its original form surviving from the pre-reclamation period when the buildings on The Strand were within metres of the shoreline. Only a few structures remain from this period, commercial development having moved inland from the Strand as other transport routes into Tauranga opened and the town expanded.

Its change of use from warehousing to smaller retail enterprises and to a restaurant/bar reflects the changing nature of downtown Tauranga and national trends. As Mann & Co. and as Guinness Bros. the Bond Store played a major role in the local economy for Tauranga and for farmers in the surrounding districts. As a bonded warehouse the building played an important role in enabling access to restricted goods such as alcohol, tobacco and other goods subject to import duties.


The Tauranga Bond Store is the only extant building from the late 19th century architectural landscape and is significant as a visual reminder of the former appearance of Tauranga's foreshore prior to reclamation, the laying of the railway and the re-positioning of the commercial area. The building evokes an earlier period of Tauranga's history.


The site of the Bond Store has proven human habitation pre-1900 and is therefore an archaeological site under the provisions of the Historic Places Act. Its footprint and curtilage is significant as it abuts the lower flanks of Monmouth Redoubt (formerly Taumatakahawai Pa) and the land may provide information relating to the military and domestic activities relating to the pa and the redoubt. The site may contain evidence relating to the building of the Bond Store in 1883 and its early use and verify the location and existence of later structures associated with the warehouse and retail activities.


The Tauranga Bond Store is the only remaining example of the utilitarian and traditional style of buildings associated with the early years of Tauranga's history as a port and the former status of The Strand as the main commercial street.

Nationwide only a few bond stores remain, and as these are all more elaborate, larger, substantial buildings, the Tauranga Bond Store is an important example of the utilitarian nature of a bond store. The strength of its structure also reflects its function as a store for heavy goods.

Tauranga Bond Store is a rare extant example of the simple plain warehouse common in ports.


As Mann & Co.'s Bond Store and as Guinness Bros. the building was a familiar landmark in the port and commercial area of Tauranga. The businesses were well-known to residents and farming communities in the district.

(a) The extent to which the place reflects important or representative aspects of New Zealand history

The Tauranga Bond Store reflects the importance of developing wharf and associated facilities for New Zealand settlements that relied primarily on the sea for transport of freight prior to the road and rail networks being established.

(b) The association of the place with events, persons, or ideas of importance in New Zealand history

The Tauranga Bond Store is closely associated with its first owner, James A. Mann, one of those visionary entrepreneurs who had foresight in establishing a retail and wholesale business in Tauranga, recognising its potential for devel-opment in connection with Rotorua's tourism industry. It is very strongly associ-ated with its second owners, the business of Guinness Bros., which imported and supplied agricultural equipment throughout the Bay of Plenty and Waikato districts from the early 20th century.

(c) The potential of the place to provide knowledge of New Zealand history

The undisturbed parts of the property on which the Tauranga Bond Store stands have high potential to provide knowledge of New Zealand history through archaeological means. The property is known to have been used for potato gardens and for housing and associated domestic activities in the 1870s. It is part of the curtilage of a pa and a redoubt and may have evidence associ-ated with these and earlier phases of occupation of the foreshore.

(e) The community association with, or public esteem for, the place

The Tauranga Bond Store was the base for two major local businesses and is a familiar landmark at the north end of The Strand. From its establishment in 1883, Mann & Co. was a prominent and respected business in Tauranga. Both Mann & Co. and its successor, Guinness Bros., found a niche in the importing and supply of agricultural equipment for the developing dairying and horticultural industries. Guinness Bros. occupied the Bond Store from 1908 and became a firm of long standing and familiarity in the local community.

(f) The potential of the pace for public education

The collection of custom duties by bondholders on behalf of the government is a relatively little-known aspect of New Zealand history. The survival of the Tauranga Bond Store provides an opportunity to disseminate knowledge on customs duties and controlled goods at different periods of New Zealand history and the relationships between the government bodies, warehouse owners and the consumer.

(g) The technical accomplishment or value, or design of the place

The Tauranga Bond Store is a good example of a simple, well-built, traditional brick and timber structure. There is good brickwork and timber detailing and finishing.

(j) The importance of identifying rare types of historic places

The Tauranga Bond Store is a rare example of a bond store and warehouse. Because of their relatively plain and simple architecture, warehouses are less-frequently retained during urban development but once played a significant role in the commercial domain. The only registered bond store is the Wellington Harbour Board Head Office and Bond Store, extremely different architecturally as the Wellington building is substantial and imposing with decorative elements not reflecting the utilitarian aspects of its role. Other registered buildings relating to wharf and import services are five customhouses (for government officers) and a landing services building (a private warehouse related only in its involvement with incoming boats and cargo).

The Tauranga Bond Store is the oldest commercial/retail building in Tauranga and is therefore a rare type of historic place in the area.

(k) The extent to which the place forms part of a wider historical and cultural complex or historical and cultural landscape

The Tauranga Bond Store sits in the context of the wharf and port area of Tauranga's commercial district, at the end of one of the earliest streets and close to the original shoreline. It is close to wharf and rail loading facilities - although these date from a later period than the Bond Store it is part of the continuum of Tauranga's importance as a port and the interactions between Auckland, Tauranga and the eastern Bay of Plenty from the mid-19th century.

Summary of Significance or Values:

This place was assessed against, and found it to qualify under the following criteria: a, b, c, e, f, g, j and k.


It is considered that this place qualifies as a Category I historic place.


Construction Professionalsopen/close

Whittaker, Thomas Henry

No biography is currently available for this construction professional

Louch, Fitz-Gibbon

No biography is currently available for this construction professional

Additional informationopen/close

Historical Narrative

The Tauranga Bond Store was built for James Alexander Mann in 1883 as a warehouse and bond store for storing imported goods.

Mann was born in London in 1836; he was well-educated, worked for East India merchants and was well-travelled in the West Indies, Central and Southern America and Canada. He was respected as an authority on cocoa cultivation, the cotton trade (he published a standard reference work Mann's Cotton Trade) and railways; he was a Fellow of several societies including the Royal Geographic Society and the Royal Asiatic Society. Mann's business experiences were marred by two companies with which he was involved going into liquidation - he survived with his reputation intact, but not his health. He and his family came to New Zealand, settling in Tauranga. The date of his arrival has not been established, but he was not on any New Zealand electoral roll in 1881. He is first listed as a Tauranga resident in 1883, as 'settler' but not on the local electoral roll until 1885.

Mann foresaw Tauranga's potential as a major port facilitating freight traffic into and out of the district including the Rotorua area. From its earliest occupation by Maori and through the European contact period Tauranga's harbour was recognised for its potential as a safe anchorage for shipping with easy shore access. The harbour was first surveyed in 1835 and by the mid-late 19th century, Tauranga was a major anchorage on the coastal route from Auckland to Whakatane, Opotiki and Gisborne. Local pressure led to Tauranga being gazetted a 'Port of Entry', or port permitted to receive overseas imports, on 30 August 1873 and the Custom House, where the Customs Department monitored and taxed the movement of goods, opened on The Strand on 13 September 1873. However, the quantity of trade proved insufficient to warrant the retention of the customs facility and Tauranga was briefly closed as a Port of Entry in mid-October 1880. A new arrangement for customs was reported two weeks later and a Gazette Notice was published on 3rd November 1881 declaring Tauranga as an 'Open Port'.

Within two years of the Port being declared open, Mann was issued the Bond for receiving overseas goods on behalf of the government. It was believed that:

... but for his enterprise in taking over the Government bond ... and building the bonded stores, and his large direct importations from London, Glasgow and New York, Tauranga would have been closed as a customs port. To his perseverance is due the fact that the port of Tauranga came to be, and is still, figuring alongside the largest through freight lists abroad... It was the aim of [James Mann] to manufacture and put up his own goods to conduct his business on the most approved lines, and to maintain a character for the utmost uprightness and fair dealing.

From 1882 Mann began making arrangements for the construction of the Tauranga Bond Store, the base for his importing business, Mann and Company. The building would also act as a bonded store where the customs duties due on imported goods could be collected. The 1870s and 1880s were boom decades for this type of warehousing in New Zealand, particularly in the main centres. In Auckland, the warehouses built by L.D. Nathan, Archibald Clark and Sons and many others were ornate multi-storey structures. Nathan and Co.'s large imposing building (now Achilles House, in Customs Street East, Auckland) was used as a Free and Bonded Store when it was built in 1904. In Wellington, the bond store was incorporated into the three-storey substantial premises for the Wellington Harbour Board built in 1892.

Mann's Bond Store was to be built on the waterfront, approximately 300 and 500 metres from the two wharves that were the main entry place for goods arriving at Tauranga until the railway and better roads were constructed. Mann had purchased the land on 4 October 1882. Previously occupied by a small house with a fenced front yard, the land had been within the curtilage of Taumatakahawai pa around 1839-1840. This pa had been built ‘under the direction of the missionaries as a place of refuge' for the Maori people at the mission station and later rebuilt as a redoubt by the 43rd Monmouth Light Infantry.

On December 8, 1882, David Lundon, Builder & Timber Merchant, Devonport Road and Grey Street, Tauranga, tendered to erect a building for Mann, the top storey to be composed of wood and iron, for ₤1225. However, the contract signed on 23 April 1883 was between Messrs Mann & Co. and Thomas Henry Whittaker for the erection of a warehouse on Allotment 5 of Sect.1 Town of Tauranga. Builder Thomas Henry Whittaker, listed as being in Tauranga in the 1872 electoral roll, was working in Tauranga by May 1875.

The height of the lower storey was altered twice during the contract negotiations, from 8'6'' to 10'6'' (2.6 m to 3.2 m). Other changes were from a hip roof to gable plus circular window, and the deletion of the water tank. The ‘existing' tank was to be used instead. The specification refers to two sheets of plans and an architect's fee (₤77/10/-), but the identity of the architect is not noted. The building was contracted to be completed within seven weeks of 30 April 1883, which if achieved, would place the building as completed by 21 June 1883. The total cost was ₤1600, excluding an additional ₤60 for Whittaker ‘... to execute the excavation and brickworks of proposed building according to plan and finish arches over windows and doors ...'.

The original plans have not been located. However, the Memo of Agreement signed 23 April 1883 between Mann & Co and Thomas Henry Whittaker includes details such as:

- Mortar to be ground lime and clean sand

- Footings and walls up to the first floor boards to be brick header and stretcher

- Inside and outside arches to be formed over all doors and windows

- Damp course to be of slate bedded in cement

- To have rusticated weatherboards on front to Strand on specified areas

- To be ₤70 for said works [Notes on back: + ₤10 for extra height + ₤4 to 10'6'' height i.e. height was altered twice after initial plans were drawn]

- Height of basement floor to joists to be 8'6'' (2.6 m) [pencil note on back says altered to 10'6'' (3.2 m)].

The price did not include excavations for concrete floor, preparing and laying the same, water, scaffolding, whitewashing cellars and rubbish removal. The final price agreed to for Whittaker's work was ₤70 plus ₤4 for the extra two courses of bricks plus and additional ₤10; i.e. ₤84. This was paid in at least two instalments, the final portion of ₤34 being paid on 12 July 1883 - it can be assumed the building was finished by this date.

By October 1883 James Mann had applied for a ‘Bond for Warehouse' under Section 19 of the Customs Laws Consolidation Act 1882. A telegram dated 16 October 1883, sent to the Officer in Charge Customs, states that Mann's warehouse is approved and Jordan's warehouse revoked. The following day, James Mann wrote in a letter to Matravers Esq.: ‘...we hope we may be allowed to remove our Goods into the new store - as the injury they will now be suffering at Jordan [& Sheppards] will be [ruinous].' The deed was finally signed and sealed on 14 November 1883, by Mann, the Standard Fire and Marine Insurance Co. of New Zealand and William Matravers Officer in Charge of Customs. The Deed bears the red wax seal of ‘Mann & Co. merchants Tauranga' and binds Mann and Company of Mann's Bonded Warehouse to provide storage and security for bonded goods until the payment of duty, collected by the company for the government. The bond paid was ₤1000. By 1898 Mann & Co. was advertising as ‘Wholesale & Retail Grocers, Oilmen, Provision, Beer & Spirit Merchants, Hardware Merchants and Direct Importers of European & American Goods'. The goods held included agricultural tools, mining gear, stationery, ammunition, furniture, apiary ware, perfumery and tobacco.

The Bond Store was well-situated at the north end of what was the main commercial street, The Strand; the large hotels were nearby on The Strand; the ‘native hostelry' was next door to the south; Joseph Brain's shipbuilder's yard and buildings were opposite the Bond Store on the shore. The shore was less than 25 m away when the store was built and the two main wharves were within a few hundred metres of the store. A photograph looking north along The Strand shows the prominence of the Bond Store at the end of the street. The Bond Store was also a distinctive landmark from the harbour. Mann & Co ‘as large direct importers, were able to compete with Auckland wholesale firms', however the destruction of the Terraces and the opening of the railway direct from Auckland to Rotorua ‘resulted in the gradual collapse of the business, which dwindled to a comparatively retail character.'

By March 1908 James Mann was in the process of selling the bonded stores, stock and goodwill of the business to Guinness Bros., evidenced by a receipt dated 27 March 1908 from J.A. Mann to Guinness Bros. for ₤1800 ‘being the second instalment of agreement for purchase'. Mann's bond was cancelled 22 May 1908 and he lived in retirement at his home ‘Mount View' until his death in January 1923.

Guinness Brothers, General Merchants, was established and took over Mann's business on 1 April 1908, advertising their intention to carry on the business as before, ‘solicit a continuance of the patronage, and hope by strict attention to secure many new customers'. The Guinness family (a woman and eight of her children, some adults by then) came to Tauranga from Dunedin not long before the business was established. The firm originally comprised Jack Arthur Guinness, Sydney [Sidney or Sid] Oswald Guinness and their stepfather John George Green. When they took over Mann & Co. the business was described as ‘wholesale wine and spirit merchandising, direct importing, wholesale and retail stores'. Initially the three men ran the business themselves with the help of a youth. In 1910 they paid out ₤55 in wages and drew ₤150 each for themselves, plus ₤25 interest on capital. At that time their gross income was ₤960.

Photographic evidence shows that the building underwent a few changes and additions during Mann's ownership and the early years of Guinness Bros.' ownership. The front wall was once clad with rusticated weatherboard and the upper-storey windows had square-section pelmets above them. Photographs taken from the redoubt in c.1907-08 show the building with shutters on the front windows; these were removed by the 1920s. The building appears to have had two loading doors into the upper floor, one on the north side (extant) and one on the south side of the building. The loading doors did not have porches. Further research may determine the date for the closing in of the southern one; closer examination of the south wall both internally and externally may establish its position. There seems to have been another use or alteration of the southern loading doorway, perhaps as an external chute or lift into the small shop; it appears as a weatherboard-clad vertical structure in two photographs. It is not known whether the two loading doors were contemporaneous nor what other entry doors existed. There was no doorway in the front wall.

Soon after (or perhaps immediately prior) to the business being sold to Guinness Bros. a small single-storey building was erected on the south side of the Bond Store, with its rusticated weatherboards aligned with those of the Bond Store. Guinness Bros. used this as a retail outlet for merchandise.

The business changed hands earlier than the land, as according to the land title deed, ownership was transferred on 12 May 1911 from Mann to John George Green, Jack Arthur Guinness and Sydney Oswald Guinness.

The fortunes of the port and of the warehouse business changed for the better, as by 1914 nearly 20,000 tonnes of imports were landed at Tauranga, and 466 tonnes exported. Guinness Bros. became a leading importer and supplier of farm machinery and equipment, advertising their wares at Agricultural and Pastoral Association shows and winter shows from the Waikato to Opotiki and north to Katikati. They utilised the roof of the Bond Store roof as advertising space, Guinness Bros.' name painted on it being highly visible from the centre of town and from the harbour. Guinness family members were prominent also in Tauranga's recreational and social scenes. For instance, in 1916 J.A. Guinness was the honorary secretary of the Bay of Plenty Jockey Club and J.A. Green was president.

The business success was reflected in the buildings. A small shed existed behind the shop by 1920. By 1923 the wooden shop had been demolished and a more substantial concrete (or possibly brick and plaster) single-storey shop had been built in its place. The increase in the port's business accelerated again with the reclamation of the foreshore which was undertaken in the early 1920s to enable the laying of the railway line east to Taneatua. This railway line would connect Tauranga to Auckland via Frankton Junction and Waihi. Dive Crescent was formed on the new reclamation, with a road crossing over the railway line, and in 1924 Victoria Wharf was demolished. In 1927 the Railway Wharf was built alongside Dive Crescent, an added bonus for the Bond Store because of its proximity. The location was handy for receiving goods from the incoming ships, and in later years for heavier freight of agricultural machinery being brought in for sale at Guinness Bros.' store and for transporting it out again to stations further east. The East Coast Main Trunk Line was officially opened on 28 March 1928.

Guinness Brothers development as a prominent Tauranga business can be seen in the further development and expansion of facilities and buildings on site. The porch over the northern loading door appears to have been installed in the early 1920s; this feature cannot be seen in earlier photographs but is visible in one dated c.1925. By c.1927 the new shop had petrol bowsers under the verandah and facing the street.

On a 1934 sketch plan, the layout of the site is shown in detail. The Bond Store building is subdivided into ‘merchandise general' in the front half and ‘Bonded warehouse ground floor merchandise upper floor' in the rear half. Adjoining on the left (east) is ‘Guinness Brothers General Store', a slightly longer building than the Bond Store. Opening to the rear and within the general store building is a passage with ‘stairs & gangway between shop and bulk store'. No doorways are shown. Behind the two buildings are several others of varying size, some with communal walls; these are marked: ‘wire', ‘oil', ‘maize', ‘OS LT bulk stock /truck', ‘grain & iron', and ‘oil store' adjacent to ‘concrete floor & ramp'. Another small drawing may represent a toilet.

In September 1948 Guinness Bros. Ltd applied for a building permit to do renovations, repairs and maintenance and the addition of a mezzanine floor to the office in the retail shop. The estimated costs were ₤950 for building and ₤50 for plumbing. The dimensions of the building were cited as 66 feet (ft) x 132 feet (20.12 metres (m) x 40.24 metres). A 1940s photograph of the rear of the building shows that the current louvre window used to be a 3-light (arranged horizontally) glazed window. In 1954 a 5,000 square ft (464.5 square m) store was built at the rear of the shop to accommodate the warehouse, hardware and servicing departments. The offices were again modernised in 1955. A 1960s photograph shows the front of the main building still lacks a door, but has the two small windows.

By 1964 the Railway Wharf had become unserviceable for larger cargo vessels. Port facilities established at Mount Maunganui, across the harbour, were improved and enlarged to the extent that the port at Mount Maunganui has become a major national facility. By 1968 Guinness Bros. employed 25 staff and the company owned three premises in Tauranga and two at Mount Maunganui, with the business having diversified over the years into tobacconists, home appliances, repairs services, hardware, fishing and boating supplies, agricultural equipment, groceries and paper supplies as well as retaining the wholesale wines and spirits business.

Guinness Brothers businesses remained in the Bond Store for 70 years, plus a further eight years just for their wine and spirits business. When occupied by Guinness Brothers the Bond Store was a familiar landmark and popular retail outlet, becoming especially well-known for the importing and supply of agricultural machinery. A local historian noted:

The name Guinness is surely woven into Tauranga's past and present; it is an old, old name with a ring of quality about it, a quality embellished into a flourishing retail and wholesale business built from the sturdy independence, the faith and the outlook of the brothers...

Subsequent land owners were: Guinness Wine and Spirits Limited (from 19.3.1979); Hughes and Cossar Limited (from 16.6.1986); Andrew Jack Butler engineer and Maureen Edith Butler housewife (8.9.1988); Trust Bank Bay of Plenty Limited (18.10.1989); Willem F. Richter-Visser manager, Catherine Richter-Visser married woman and Murray A. Osmond, solicitor (16.7.1993); the Richter-Vissers and Peter S. Morton, solicitor (7.7.1997); Trevor Jones Design Limited (25.10.1996); Philip John Crotty and Elisa Bulawan Crotty (1.7.1998); No.1 The Strand Ltd (16.2.2000), a group of five co-owners (13.9.03). Three of the latter group, Benjamin Gower, Susan Gower and Ewen Mackintosh, have remained as co-owners since 9 July 2007.

After Guinness Bros. moved out the premises were used in 1986 by Hughes & Cossar, followed by Saunderson Packaging and in 1987 Tulloch Photography (run by Bob Tulloch). In 1997 Tulloch Photography moved into the refurbished warehouse at the rear and Rick Allan began alterations to the main building. The retail shop was demolished in c.1997. Major alterations were undertaken in 1997-1998, first by Bob Tulloch and later by Rick Allan. Most of the internal partitions and fittings relevant to the original warehouse were removed during the fit-out as a restaurant and bar. Internal stairs are shown on a 1996 plan - these were in the northeast quadrant of the building. They were removed during the renovations for the café but their position can be traced by irregularities in the wooden ceiling and floor of the room above.

In late March 1998 Allan opened the Conservatory Café Bar in the ground floor after alterations including the addition of a glassed-in conservatory; his restaurant could seat 80 people. The restaurant closed within a few months after getting into financial difficulties, but the business was taken over by Dave and Tanya Bamford-King. Operating under the same name, but more as a bar and café, the business was relatively successful. However, this business closed also and the ground floor is unused. The upper floor has been occupied by the Tauranga Community Arts Council (now known as Creative Tauranga) since the late 1990s. They use the space as a gallery for local art works, with an administration area and storage rooms. The loft above is empty.

During the 20th century, commercial and retail development expanded up side streets such as Wharf Street, Hamilton Street and Spring Street, and Grey Street assumed prominence within the town centre. The Bond Store was no longer in a prime retail spot and Guinness Bros. moved their business premises to busier areas. Except for the Bond Store all the older buildings along The Strand have been replaced or re-modelled so that the architectural landscape in this area no longer reflects its late 19th-century importance. The Bond Store is the oldest commercial or retail building remaining in Tauranga.

Physical Description

The Bond Store is a well built two-storey building of utilitarian, traditional, simple design with load-bearing exterior walls and a central structural spine supporting overhead posts and beams. It is rectangular, with a gabled roof aligned west-east with the front of the building facing the harbour to the east. The building is set into the slope of the hill on its northern side such that some of the lower floor is below ground level. A driveway which runs up-slope from The Strand, roughly parallel to the footpath leading up to Monmouth Street, is adjacent to the northern wall; this provides access to the stairs up to the wooden landing and the north door on the upper floor. There is no interior access between storeys but evidence suggests that there used to be.

A newer building contiguous with the rear of the Bond Store for the whole of the ground floor wall is not considered to be part of the Bond Store (research may establish whether it is Guinness Bros. bulk store or workshop built 1954). A conservatory structure on the south side is of very recent construction (1997) and is not considered to be part of the Bond Store.

The building is fitted with electricity, gas and plumbing for fresh water, waste water and sewerage.

The east (front) and south walls are constructed of structural brick. The lower storey of the north wall is also brick, only partly visible due to being set into the hill: ground level at the rear is five courses of bricks below the upper floor, sloping down to twelve bricks at the eastern end of the north wall. The upper floor of the north wall is faced with new long-run corrugated iron. The front wall is plastered and has a raised parapet apparently capped and edged with flat copper sheeting. The rear (west) wall is faced with older short-run corrugated iron; in the upper wall near the gable is a fixed-louvre wooden panel estimated as 1.6 x 1 m. Two pairs of two-light windows, c. 1940s, exist in the northern end of the rear wall.

The exterior of the east wall has had plaster removed on the lower storey to expose the brickwork, which includes large decorative brickwork lintels over the windows. If the architect's instructions were followed, the lower storey walls were to be brick header and stretcher, the mortar ground lime and clean sand and a damp course of slate embedded in cement and the walls to be laid.

The front windows and door are deeply recessed; timber boarding cladding the recesses is of newer (mid-1980s?) construction. The front entrance, c.1 m wide, consists of a pair of narrow doors opening inwards with a fixed-glass window above. The date of the installation of this door is not known but is believed to be by c.1985. The doors are tongue and groove (T&G) wooden panelling. Three pairs of double-hung sash windows are set into the front wall of the upper storey. Plastered 'flanges' curve out over the front door and windows on both storeys.

The north wall has a pair of wide sliding doors opening from the first (upper) floor onto a landing and has only one window, of relatively new construction, towards the rear. The wide doorway is accessed from the driveway via new wooden steps and landing protected by a porch roof. The door sill is a wide (c. 25 cm) wooden slab. It has a newer insert, probably a repair for the most well-worn portion. The repair may be more than 40 years old. The sill slab is up to 10 cm thick. Below the sill is a wooden facing board c.33 cm wide. The sliding doors are suspended from a metal rail, each door suspended from two rollers; their lower edges fit into a groove lined with metal (zinc?). The groove has a raised lip along the interior edge. The doors are approximately 3m high. New locks have been fitted, but an older hinge for a padlock is still attached on the inside of the door. The doors are 75 mm wide tongue and grooved timber, framed and strengthened with 23 cm wide boards. The upper part of each door has a pane of glass. The porch roof has new corrugated iron cladding but the framing appears older.

The roof of the building is corrugated iron.

The upper storey consists of one large open space with recent partitions to form small rooms (storerooms, kitchen, bathroom) in the northeast and southwest corners. Floor boards are c.8 inches wide (c.205 mm) and up to 8 m long, nailed to the joists every 15 inches (c.37 cm). The thickness of the boards was not ascertained but they are probably at least 50mm thick, forming a very solid floor. The ceiling is tongue and groove timber planking of wide planks (c.150 mm) each with one decorative beaded edge. Beams across the width of the building are attached with bolts with large square heads. Three posts (plus evidence of one removed) along the central line support beams above. The posts are wooden, c.10 cm square with chamfered corners. One post supports a vertical ladder going into the loft above [not inspected].

Evidence for various modifications in the ceiling and floor is seen with cut original timbers filled in with inserted panels. A trapdoor in the floor exists but was not located; it is visible from below and would be beneath the carpet in the northeast storeroom. It is presumed to be in the position of the former staircase. In the front wall are three pairs of double-hung sash windows; in the south side (facing town centre) are newer 3-light windows.

Structurally, the lower storey is one large open space but is divided by partition walls into a large front open area, a kitchen and a bar counter towards the rear. The trapdoor to the floor above is visible near the north side of the front room. Brick pillars support the beams which are c.15 in (37 cm) square.

The windows and door on the east side have decorative brickwork arches above, described by architect Jeremy Salmond as 'segmented flat arches formed with tapered bricks. A later opening has been formed with a less sophisticated flat arch.' The specification described the brick masonry basement walls as:

... brick header and stretcher well bonded and bedded in fine mortar, the joints internally and externally to be neatly struck and pointed. Inside and outside arches to be formed over all doors and windows.

Construction Dates

Original Construction
1883 -
23 April Building contract signed, to be built by 21 June 1883

1907 - 1909
One-storey weatherboard shop added to south side

1923 -
Concrete/plastered shop replaces timber shop on south side

1927 -
Petrol bowsers installed at front

1948 -
Building permit application for renovations, repairs and maintenance and the addition of a mezzanine floor to the office in shop (possibly including new windows at rear)

1954 -
A 5000-sq.ft store built at rear of shop and store to accommodate the warehouse, hardware and servicing departments

1955 -
'Modernisations' to offices

Door cut into front wall by c.1985

1997 - 1998
Shop on south side demolished; alterations for restaurant/bar, removal of hardware shop fittings

Construction Details

Brick, concrete, timber, corrugated steel

Public NZAA Number


Completion Date

24th March 2008

Report Written By

Lynette Williams

Information Sources

Bay of Plenty Times

Bay of Plenty Times

30 August 1873, 13 September 1873, 17 September 1873, 18 October 1880, 28 October 1880, 11 November 1881, 17 November 1882 p.2, 5 June 1883, 28 July 1883, 9 August 1883, 31 January 1898, 30 March 1908, 9 January 1923.

Monday 1 April, 1962; 2- page feature with advertisments.

Bilcliffe, 1995

John Bilcliffe, Well done the 68th; the story of a regiment. Chippenham [Eng-land]. Picton Pub, 1995

Electoral Roll

New Zealand Electoral Roll

Gifford, 1976

W H Gifford & H. Bradney Williams A centennial history of Tauranga, Wellington, A. H. & A. W. Reed, [1976]: 97

Hansen, 1997

Neil G Hansen. History of Tauranga Harbour & Port 1997 Tauranga; Port of Tauranga Ltd

Wises Post Office Directories

Wises Post Office Directories

Hodgson, 1992

T. Hodgson, The Heart of Colonial Auckland 1865-1910, Random Century NZ Ltd, Auckland 1992

McGill, 1991

David McGill, The Guardians at the Gate: The History of the New Zealand Customs Department, Wellington, Silver Owl Press for the New Zealand Customs Dept., 1991

Morrow, 2000

D. Morrow, The Bondstore; Storehouse of Wellington History, Wellington, 2000

Ross, 1977

John Ross, Pride in Their Ports: The Story of the Minor Ports. Dunmore Press, Palmerston North, 1977

Stokes, 1980

Evelyn Stokes, A history of Tauranga County Dunmore Press, Palmerston North, 1980

Journal of the Tauranga Historical Society

Journal of the Tauranga Historical Society

E W Morris. How it began - No. 3, Guinness Bros, no.45, June 1972

Other Information

A fully referenced registration report is available from the NZHPT Lower Northern Area Office

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.