Jul 2, 2009

Christchurch Cob Cottages


This is a restoration of a circa 1870 photograph of a family standing in front of their Cob or mud brick cottage.

This type of dwelling proliferated in the environs of Christchurch during the earliest period of settlement and were most common in the southern suburbs of Waltham, Sydenham and Addington, when that district was favoured as a location for market gardens.

Below is a circa 1880 photograph of a Cob cottage in Lincoln Road, Addington. The proportions, roof lines, chimney location and window frames indicate that it may be the same cottage as depicted above.

Only one of the city's original Cob cottages, dating from about 1860, is known to have survived. Pictured below a century ago, and then forty years later, it is situated near the southern end of the Ferry Road bridge at the estuary of the Heathcote River.

Nearby, in the Ferrymead Heritage Park, is a facsimile of an early Cob cottage (below). Sadly, it sports an inauthentic corrugated iron roof, a feature that doesn't enter the city's photographic record until 1879; a time when the surviving Cob cottages were little more than relics of an earlier era.

Originally thatched with Raupo (the indigenous Bulrush), below is an example of a re-roofed Cob cottage. Situated in Sydenham, it stood on the northern side of Brougham Street, jist east of Colombo Street until 1912, when this photograph was taken.

We're greatfully indebted to Steven McLachlan of the Shades Stamp Shopat 108 Hereford Street, Christchurch for the top photograph, which precipitated this article.

1 comment:

Mick said...

Now that is Carbon Zero building.