WAIPAWA.COM

Waipawa 1950's-60's

From: Noel
To:  Jan
Subject: Waipawa Railway Station

Hi Jan
 Would you have in your museum any pictures at all of the old Waipawa railway station, or a photo of the milk bar known as "The Lounge" or any pictures at all of the main shopping street around the 1950's or early 1960's?  I would dearly love to find one or two to help illustrate an article I am writing for NZ Memories about my first year in New Zealand at Gwavas Forest in 1959.

Many thanks
Noel Davenhill


From: Jan
To:  Noel
Subject: Waipawa Railway Station

Hi Noel,

I don't personally have any pictures of the old railway station, and although I do have a couple of "The Lounge" (as it was the Bibby store before that - and I'm a Bibby descendant) it probably is of the wrong era - not 1950-1960's like you want, but a lot earlier.
I will forward your enquiry to the CHB Settlers Museum where I am sure Rosheen can help you.
Where/When is your article being published? I'd really love to see it.

Regards
Jan Gosling


From: Noel
To:  Jan
Subject: Waipawa Railway Station

Hi Jan

Thanks for your prompt reply to my email. I have already tried Rosheen so don't worry about contacting her. She couldn't help either.
It seems incredible that nobody has a picture of the old railway station, I've tried several sources. 
I can remember a group of us coming into Waipawa every second Friday night in a truck from Gwavas. We did our fortnightly shopping then went into The Lounge before going to the pictures next door. We had to see the film on show because the alternative was sitting in the truck till about 10.30pm.  I seem to recall that the milk bar always closed after the interval, and there was nowhere else to go. 

Can you recall if the picture theatre had a name back then?

Was it actually part of Bibby's Store?

My article is due to be published in NZ Memories in August. It relates the rather harrowing experience I had on arrival at Waipawa on a winter's night.
This is why I need a photo of the station.  An article in June 2008, described my voyage to NZ as an emigrant on SS Captain Hobson.

Thanks for your help

Noel   


From: Jan
To:  Noel
Subject: Waipawa Railway Station

Hi again Noel,

Yes. I'm surprised Rosheen can't help you down at the Museum. I can vaguely remember old photos of the main street of the era you're looking for  and I thought it was from back at my time working at the Museum - but maybe it was somewhere else I saw them?

Anyway I've put on my thinking cap to think of where we could find some photos and I've made a couple of calls to people I know here in Waipawa who might have some. They are looking through their collections to see if they have any that recent - and are asking friends of theirs who might have some too?

Isn't it funny how we hoard REALLY old photos and forget to collect photos of things happening in our present or more recent past.

Anyway one of the people I talked to has got some photos of Waipawa's main street before it was dismantled in the early 1970's - it may be as close to that time as we can get... but I'll wait and see what their explorations produce.

The movie theatre was down the road a little from the Lounge in the Municipal Theatre building (which is turning 100 next year!). The picture theatre itself (I have been told by someone who was a projectionist there in the 60's) was called the Regent.
 It will be really great to hear your memories of it .

Anyway, I'll let you know how our search went and what we turn up.

:-) Jan


From: Noel
To:  Jan
Subject: Waipawa Photos

Hello Jan

 I was so pleased to hear from you again.  If you do manage to locate anything I will be thrilled, even a picture of the main street prior to dismantling could be useful.
I really have to get any pictures to the editor before the end of April, so we don't have too much time!  I look forward to possible developments with eager anticipation

Cheers Noel


From: Jan
To:  Noel
Subject: Waipawa photos

Hi Noel,

I'm afraid I haven't had much luck with the Lounge or the Railway station yet - but I have put the word out and a few people are checking their collections of photos - I just don't know if people took photos of place so much then??? I don't know, it seems odd to me. But your enquiry has made me realize that I need to start collecting together photos of more recent history in Waipawa - because lets face it, it might seem ordinary and
everyday now, but in the future people can really see how our town has changed. I think we don't really notice it when we live there all the time.

Anyway I have found a few photos of the main street before it came down. And when I say before, I mean IMMEDIATELY before. In some of the shop windows there are sign advertising the final demolition sale... so that dates these as around 1985 which is when the eastern side of the main street came down.

I'm afraid that's as close as I can get right now. But I did have a ring from someone yesterday saying that he had been talking to some of the born and bred Waipawa people and that they had some photos of the main street pre demolition. So I have two people to ring after Easter and we'll see how we go from there - so we may get something better than these??? We'll just keep our fingers crossed.

So here are a couple of the photos I have found so far...


:-) Jan

POST-SCRIPT NOTE TO ANYONE OUT THERE
If anyone else has photos of Waipawa township or events of any time period that they don’t mind sharing with me, so I can share them with other people through this website, please email them to me with details of time, place and what’s happening in them.
Perhaps we’ll start up a gallery page on the website?
Thanks
Jan


From: Noel
To:  Jan
Subject: Waipawa photos

 Hello Jan
 I am so appreciative of the trouble you are taking for me, it is really very kind of you to spend so much time and effort for somebody you have never met.  Thank you so much.  I love the pictures you sent me, but I don't really think they would be accepted. I know this is how the town looked, but the more modern cars somehow lower the impact.  If by any chance you are able to find anything appropriate from your contacts I will be over the moon.  I will certainly ensure you receive a copy of my article when it is published in August. Do enjoy your Easter break - or perhaps you will be working in the museum.

Cheers
Noel


From: Jan
To:  Noel
Subject: Waipawa photos

Hi again Noel,

Yes, I wondered about the cars too as they can definitely help to pinpoint dates. I know we did the same thing with an old photo which I used as the basis for the mural I painted in the entrance of the museum. We looked at the car in the photo and determined what date the photo was from that.

Still - I'm hoping that we may find something more appropriate amongst these other photos. Although as I said earlier maybe people didn't think of taking photos of just an ordinary everyday scene. Maybe it took something drastic to happen like the main street being disassembled to spur people to take photos?

And yes, I'm planning to enjoy my Easter break and do very little…

I don't work at the Museum any more. I did a few years ago and helped George (the curator back then) to transform the Museum into what it is today, and I designed and built many of the exhibits such as the rooms of the house, and the main street and shop displays. I had a lot of fun with George building, painting, making an old ceiling rose, and tracking down fireplaces, diningroom tables etc... It really allowed me to not only indulge my creative urge but get in touch with Waipawa's history too.

I work primarily as a teacher every morning (teaching children with reading difficulties) and then a sculptor most afternoons - and working on enquiries such as yours in my spare time just adds a little more interest to life and I learn something usually along the way. So its really no trouble... I find it great talking to some of the more established people of Waipawa about their families and memories, and I feel it is fantastic who many of them
love to share their stories and experiences.

Plus often when I put these stories on the website I can have feedback, or more information added to it, and sometimes photos (sometimes months or even years after it has gone on line) which makes the story even more interesting.

I would really love to read your article when it comes out... and fingers crossed we will find some photos for it.

Have a good Easter
Jan


From: Jan
To:  Noel
Subject: Waipawa photos

Hi Noel,

I just thought I'd let you know that I haven't had any success yet with finding any photos. I've had a few people look through their collections but we strike the same problem... way too early, or too recent.
I had another thought and have emailed a letter to CHB Mail (our local free newspaper) to ask if anyone has any photos, and wrote an email to Simon at the local radio station to see if he can put a similar message over the air.
We'll have to wait until next week to see what happens.
I know time is getting short and I'm amazed that nobody seems to have photos of the 50's or 60's.
I hope something turns up

:-) Jan


From: Jan
To:  Noel
Subject: Waipawa photos

Hi Noel,
I know that your deadline for the magazine has past... and I had had no luck with my search for any Waipawa photos 1950's-60's even after having a request put in the CHB Mail and over Central FM!!! and me speaking to quite a few older residents in Waipawa - until today.
I was rung up by someone who said they had a photo of the main street taken in 1950 something... and she's dropping it off to me tomorrow.
I'm going to borrow it and scan it - and if you would like me to send a scanned image on to you on I will.
I know you wanted photos by the end of April so I'm sorry this photo didn't come to light sooner.

Sorry about that
Jan


From: Noel
To:  Jan
Subject: Waipawa photos

Hi Jan
I have sent all my photos to the editor of Memories, but if you could please scan the photo of Waipawa’s main street in 1950 I would love to see it. If it is appropriate I am sure they can still use it.
Thanks very much. I eagerly look forward to seeing it.
 
Cheers
Noel


From: Jan
To:  Noel
Subject: Waipawa photos

Hi Noel,
I got the photos today and scanned them. There is one of the main street (taken I think from the top of the then new post office)

 I thought the main street photo was great... with all the old cars, and trucks double parked and almost blocking the road. Margaret did start to tell me who some of the cars parked there belonged to - but it was a bit before my time here - so I didn't know them.

And the other is of the little garage on the main street (which is almost opposite the turn off to Ruataniwha street).
I got the photos from Margaret Gray - her dad took the photo of the garage in the early 50's... we still have a petrol station there today only its a big BP one.
I don't know if these will be any help but I think they're really cute - wish I could find more of that era.

Anyway here they are...

:-) Jan


From: Noel
To:  Jan
Subject: Waipawa photos

Hi Jan
Thanks so much for the great pictures.
There was still time to get the main one in, so I have sent it today.  The petrol station was not quite appropriate so I have not sent it.
I will email you a copy of the article when it is published
Thanks again
Noel


From: Jan
To:  Noel
Subject: Waipawa photos

Hi Noel,
I'm just glad I could help (finally).
I would love to get an email of the article when its published.
Would it be OK to post it on the www.waipawa.com  website after that issue of the magazine isn't current anymore? It would be great to add to the story of Waipawa that I'm collecting - but I understand if you'd rather not.

Take care
Jan
 


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