From a state of disrepair and ongoing risk of flood, Taylor-Stace Cottage in Pauatahanui is now safely restored - and set to be a beauty salon.
Bringing the property back to life has been a shared effort between the owners, Stephanie and Andrew Manning, Porirua City Council and the New Zealand Historic Places Trust (NZHPT).
Mrs Manning says it has been a challenge.
"The last 18 months have been a real battle with the cottage revealing lots of hidden problems, but it is now looking beautiful and hopefully will be ready for whatever the next 100 years brings," she said.
Initially the cottage will be used as a beauty salon but the plan is to turn it into accommodation so more people have the opportunity to enjoy it and its location
"Pauatahanui was once a place to stop on long journeys and it is our wish that the cottage will become a place to come and rest and recharge your batteries in today's busy life."
The Mannings' next goal is to landscape around the cottage.
NZHPT Central Region acting general manager Alison Dangerfield says the trust was pleased to work with the Mannings on conservation repairs as well as wider concept plans for the site.
"A heritage covenant, for greater protection of the cottage, has been in place for some time and last year, the NZHPT Board approved an incentive fund grant of $60,000 for conservation work which has now been undertaken by the owners."
The city council had also identified the cottage as a priority heritage site and set aside $50,000 toward lifting the cottage to protect if from further flood damage, says Matt Trlin, Environment and City Planning manager.
"We are thrilled that this work has now been completed and that the new owners, Stephanie and Andrew Manning, have been equally committed to ensuring its protection for many years to come."
The cottage, built in 1847, is a registered Category I historic place. It is the earliest remaining building of European origin in the Greater Wellington area.
* The Mannings invite the public to view the restored cottage, see photos of the project and share stories and information at an open evening this Thursday at 6.30pm.
- Kapi-Mana News