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I have clear memories of Jenkins’ series of stories documenting its restoration in these pages in the early 2000s, as New Zealanders finally started to wake up to the glories of our modernist history. Jenkins bought the house to save it: nearly 20 years on it’s now in need of some serious work, as you’ll read on p.160.
Owners like Jenkins aside, we still have a somewhat vexed history with modernism. There are some very good, very well-preserved and beloved homes, but few have any heritage protection; there are too many good examples under serious threat. Like the 1967 ‘Wong House’ in Auckland’s Remuera by Claude Megson, which was recently marketed as “Not for the faint hearted” due to an unfortunate 1990s reclad. The home was sure to sell for millions and there is no certainty it won’t be demolished, though we can always hope some enlightened owner falls in love. And maybe one day, we’ll all have the same attitude as Jenkins.