Home' The Wellingtonian : April 19th 2012 Contents 18 THE WELLINGTONIAN, APRIL 19, 2012
Then: Island Bay, 1912. Severn St is the dirt track in the right centre. Derwent St is parallel, to the left. Taputeranga
Island is at the top left.
Photo: ALEXANDER TURNBULL LIBRARY
Now: A century later. Seven St is on the right. It forks sharply to the right and out of view.
Photo: HAMISH CARDWELL
By HAMISH CARDWELL
It is fitting that Severn St takes its
name from a long and winding
Like many other streets in Island
Bay, Severn St is named after a
The River Severn, from the
Welsh word hafren , is the longest
river in Britain. It winds its way
over 350km, from the Cambrian
mountains in Wales to Gloucester-
shire in England s south west.
Severn St also takes a meander-
ing path. It runs parallel to
Derwent Street, then heads into a
steep incline. The road then splits
into tributaries before twisting its
way down to the sea.
The Evening Post first mentioned
Severn St on April, 3, 1901. A Mr D
Duggen won the tender to form a
portion of the street.
Other Island Bay streets named
after European rivers include
Rhine, Danube, Derwent, Clyde,
Avon, Dee, Don, Murray, Thames,
Volga, Tyne and Mersey.
Historic station's future in doubt
Tricky question: The historic Tawa Railway Station may be torn down and
replaced with a modern equivalent.
Photo: MARY BAINES
By MARY BAINES
Tawa people are likely to fight a
plan to demolish their historic rail-
A Tawa community board meet-
ing last Thursday night was told by
the Wellington Regional Council
that the 1937 building was likely to
be replaced with a modern railway
Extensive water damage and
years of neglect have caused major
Replacing the station would cost
about $600,000 and take up to
three months, whereas restoration
of the old building would cost at
least $1.5 million and take 18
Tawa commuters surveyed this
week showed most supported resto-
Maggie Love pointed out the
importance of the historic building
in the Tawa community.
There s not many [historic]
buildings left in Tawa -- it s sad.
Either way it s going to cost the
taxpayer, Ms Love said.
But retired Tawa woman Doris
Kebbell said the building was past
the point of being able to be
restored. We might as well do it if
it needs replacing as it has to last
for years, Ms Kebbell said.
Tawa Historical Society chair-
man Bruce Murray said the rail-
way station recalled a bygone era
when rail was king and communi-
ties fought to have access to it.
If such station buildings disap-
pear, our region loses something
that will never be replaced, Mr
We have noted the extremely
positive response following the
renovation and preservation of the
Plimmerton Railway Station, and
would like to see a similar solution
seriously canvassed in Tawa.
Wellington city councillor and
Tawa resident Ngaire Best said she
would love the building to remain.
I would be keen to get feedback
from local community as to what
their thoughts are, whether 18
months is too long to even allow us
to consider rebuilding the existing
building or if we are going to have
to look at a more pragmatic
approach. Ms Best said.
Tawa s last mayor, from 1987 to
1989, and New Zealand Historic
Places Trust central region area co-
ordinator, David Watt, said that
although the building was not
registered in the New Zealand His-
toric Places Trust national register
or listed on the Wellington City
Council district plan, it was of some
I would hope the Tawa Com-
munity Board will respond strongly
advocating the retention of the
building as have other local
authorities in the Wellington
region, Mr Watt said.
Wellington regional councillor
Peter Glensor said the building was
in very bad repair and might be
beyond the point of no return.
He said that if public opinion was
strongly in favour of keeping the
building and the community was
willing to raise some of the funds,
the council might concede but
because of the costs, engineering
risks and time involved, it was
At this stage the engineers had
not spent the $50,000 that would
be required to do a thorough check
of the building.
We are very worried about
lifting it up to review the piles and
foundations as there is a real fear
the building would disintegrate.
We regard it as an extremely bad
option. When the public are talking
about it, it is important they are
aware of that, Mr Glensor said.
The community board has called
a public meeting at 4.30pm, on
Sunday, May 6, at the Tawa Com-
munity Centre to discuss the plan.
The board is also open to
submissions, which can be sent to
community chairman Malcolm
Sparrow at firstname.lastname@example.org
or by phone to Ngaire Best, phone
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