■ Tell us about the memories or stories this picture evokes for you, and/or send us a historic photo of the Whanga¯ rei District you would like to share with our readers. Email email@example.com or write to Looking Back, c/- Whangarei Report, PO Box 210, Whanga¯ rei 0140.
For 60 years the magnificent pillars of the Bank of New Zealand gave the Bank St/cameron St/rust Ave intersection in Whanga¯ rei a touch of class. The building was built in 1925 and the bank knocked it down in 1985, despite protests from Whanga¯ rei residents. Requests to save the building or at least retain the fine facade on the front of a new structure fell on deaf ears. The building that replaced it is still in use today. The BNZ has been operating in Whanga¯ rei since September, 1876. The first branch was in Walton St. In 1881, the bank bought a large site on the Bank St/rust Lane (the name then) corner. The bank put up a single-storey building on the site in 1882, and replaced it with the large building in the photograph in 1925.