Walk with Dinah through Thorndon’s past and you’ll love it as much as she does. Here side by side sit the houses of chimney sweeps, washer women, artists, writers, prime ministers and merchants. Characters all of them. And their houses are all still lived in.
The preservation of a suburb like Thorndon does not happen by chance, it takes people committed to this unique sort of conservation, who believe that old buildings provide continuity, a different life style, an appreciation of past craftsmanship.
The Thorndon Society, who have fought for years to retain Thorndon’s old world charm, know that once our old houses are gone, so is our history.
If you find Thorndonites a trifle defensive about their environment today it’s because Thorndon almost disappeared during the great motorway blitzes of the 1960s and 70s when town planners and developers regarded Thorndon as a slum, destined for demolition.
In the 1980s, The Thorndon Society was dubbed by developers as the Local Mafia, the Knaves of Thorndon and the Despotic Watchdogs. Posters were put up saying “Death to the Thorndon Society.”
Now it might make more sense of that phrase “Don’t knock our Local Mafia too hard. We need them”.
Explore this and more on Dinah Priestley’s Old Thorndon: An Historic Walking Tour.
Copies of Dinah’s book Old Thorndon will be available for $15.00.
Booking is required. Please email email@example.com to book.
Location: Begonia House forecourt, Wellington Botanic Garden. - 101 Glenmore St, Kelburn, Wellington 6012
Cost: $5 per person.
Tour Duration: 1 hour
Email Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Telephone Contact: 04 4727257