Our Wellington

News | 13 January 2021

More cool heritage objects you may not have noticed...

Here in Wellington, our heritage is all around us – if you know where to look.

And while some of our old buildings may have obvious heritage value or status, some of our smaller objects may not. 

So we thought we’d pick out some interesting objects classified as having heritage status by our team of experts. 

You may find the objects familiar, or you might walk or cycle past them every day without noticing them. 

If you don’t recognise them, why not go and check them out. 

There are plenty more objects to discover at wellingtoncityheritage.org.nz

Dog memorial drinking fountain 

Paddy the Wanderer drinking fountain.

Where: Affixed to Shed 7, 1 Queens Wharf 

When: Constructed 1945 

A lot of Wellingtonians will know the story of Paddy the Wanderer, a stray dog who captured public imagination during the bleak years of the Great Depression.  

But did you know they built a fountain in his honour? 

Paddy died on 17 July 1939, and the fountain was built in 1945 using granite from the Waterloo Bridge in London. The memorial features two bronze or brass plaques, and a drinking fountain. One plaque is inscribed with the dog’s life story, the other bears the inscription: “To the Memory of Paddy the Wanderer”. There are three bowls – one for people, and two for dogs. So now all Wellington doggos and their owners can enjoy a drink in Paddy’s honour. Awww. 

Here’s the full listing. 

Electrical junction box 

The electrical junction box on Adelaide Road.

Where: Adelaide Road (Corner of Stoke Street), Newtown 

When: Constructed 

c.1904 - c.1905 

Between 1879 and 1964, the public transport system in Wellington was primarily based around the tramway. This junction box is primarily associated with the second period of our tramway development, between 1902 and 1964, as well as the electrification of the system. It serves as a physical reminder of what was one of the most important infrastructural developments in Wellington’s history. 

But what was actually in the box? 

As the listing states: “The equipment inside these kinds of boxes was typically either a junction for power supply, or an isolator for transport systems”. Which kinda makes sense really. 

Check out the full entry here.

Tram shelter 

A Wadestown tram shelter.

Where: Intersection of Sefton Street and Lennel Road, Wadestown 

When: Constructed c.1918 

Another tram-related heritage object, this Wadestown tram shelter is one of five beautiful little buildings across the city. The other shelters are found at Cambridge Terrace, Miramar Avenue, the Oriental Bay Terminus, and Oriental Parade.  

The listing sums it up perfectly: “This small concrete and timber former tram shelter has architectural / aesthetic value for its carefully proportioned exterior, the quality of its construction materials, and the ornamentation that was used to enrich this otherwise utilitarian building.” Hear hear. 

Read all about it here.