New lease of life for early settlers' home
An early Nelson home showing severe signs of age has been snapped up by a buyer who plans to renovate it, sales agent Simon Collins said.
The rendered timber weatherboard "Carpenter Gothic" home in Motueka St built around 1870 has been bought by a Nelson family, whose son plans to return from Australia to renovate it.
Mr Collins said the property attracted more than 100 inquiries since it went on the market in recent months and sold for a little over its rateable value of $165,000.
He said the home's interior had some great wooden features but he imagined the renovation would be a "pretty serious job".
"It's a great project and it's nice the house is going to be done up. The staircase in it is really beautiful and it's a really lovely piece of Nelson history," Mr Collins said.
Details of the home's history feature in the Nelson City Council's 2010 heritage inventory project, compiled by Wellington heritage architect Ian Bowman and historian Miriam Clark. They said there was no information on council files that allowed them to place a definitive date on when the home was built, but rating records showed a four-room wooden house was built on the site in 1867.
They were not certain if the current house was the original which had been added to, as it was "clearly larger than four rooms".
Mr Bowman said it was probable that the first house on the section was either demolished and replaced with the existing house, or was extensively altered around 1870 to the current configuration.
Historic records on the land led the heritage inventory writers to believe the house was built by Henry Newport, who later sold it to Andrew Salmond. The home remained in the Salmond family until 1951, but the land holding on which it was originally built was gradually subdivided.
Jessie Salmond, a spinster, was the last in the family to own the home. Ownership was transferred to Wellington carpenter William Marks in April 1951.
It was returned to Nelson ownership in 1957 and from then it became the home of a succession of Nelson owners.
Mr Bowman said the house has had few modifications over the years, except for a fence and various heating systems.
He said there were no plans on its design in council archives, but it appeared to be timber framed, two-storeyed with double gables facing north.
The home's street frontage is rendered [plaster], possibly over weatherboards.
"The style of the house is a version of Gothic where English Tudor Gothic was reinterpreted with timber but with simpler detailing and is known as Carpenter Gothic," Mr Bowman said.
He said the number of other houses of the same period still surviving in Nelson was a sign they were well built and were maintained well enough for them to survive until now.
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