Topic: BNZ branch Tauranga opens - July 1964

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This article describing the opening of the B.N.Z branch in Tauranga appeared in the December 1964 B.N.Z Staff Magazine (Vol 6, No. 5). Laurie Sanders remembers joining the branch on July 20 1964 when Mr Cliff Colson was the manager.

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Bay of Plenty—King Country

Correspondent G. Laurence

TAURANGA.  Opening of the New Tauranga Premises.

The Bank is now open for Business! And indeed it was. After twenty months of back-breaking and at times no doubt, heartbreaking labour, the new premises for our Tauranga Branch were finally completed and at 10 a.m. on Monday, 13th July, 1964. the first customer entered.

Construction started in the middle of October, 1962, and the building was officially opened by Mr Bruce H. Smith, Assistant General Manager, on 10th July, 1964. For the staff who had watched the old building torn down and the new one erected in its place, the 10th was indeed a happy day; the culmination of many months patient watching and waiting. As the new premises neared completion, interest quickened, and many were the visits paid to "see where we'll be working".

Built on simple yet elegant lines, the two-storey building with its mezzanine floor will be a real asset to the banking community of the City of Tauranga and surrounding district. The full-height banking chamber is divided into public and staff space by varnished mahogany tellers' boxes. The simplicity of line is carried on inside giving an air of elegance and space, while clear varnished mahogany and tawa is used throughout the building for decorative effect. Extensive use has been made of tinted plate glass to cut down outside glare and all lighting is indirect.
The entire building is completely air-conditioned—believed to be the first in Tauranga with this feature—and in winter the temperature will be maintained at 68 degrees with a maximum of 72 degrees in summer.

The staff rooms situated on the first floor are spacious and beautifully laid out and are a real paradise to a staff which has known cramped conditions for some years. It was a pleasure to have Mr Bruce Smith with us to conduct the opening. Unknown, except by name, to the majority of the staff, he soon impressed with his natural manner and easy approach.

Mr Smith's remarks in declaring the new premises open were very well received by an appreciative audience and we feel he
Mr Smith declaring the new building open for business has left a lasting impression of a very favourable nature as a representative of Head Office, with the public of Tauranga and other visitors present at our opening ceremony.

Local civic leaders who addressed the large gathering included the Mayor of Tauranga, Mr D. S. Mitchell; the Chairman of the Tauranga County Council, Mr C. A. Moore; and Mr H. E. Carter, Chairman of the Tauranga Harbour Board. Each in turn congratulated the Executive of the Bank of N.Z. on their enterprise and faith in the future of Tauranga and mentioned briefly the connection which their respective organisations had held with the Bank over the years. One worthy comment came from Mr Moore who reminded us that while fine buildings and good facilities are very desirable, it is the service that counts, and it is the staff who provide that service.

We lost no time in providing some first class service to our visitors by distributing refreshments per medium of the tellers' boxes, with afternoon tea being served upstairs as well. The social "hour" which our Manager, Mr Colson, invited the guests to spend with us proved a very happy one, and several hours later the last of our visitors departed—full of goodwill towards everyone in general and the Bank of New Zealand in particular.
Now that the initial settling-in is over, life goes on much the same—a little further to walk round the office, a little longer to find things at present, but such a very pleasant set of surroundings in this our new Bank.


This page archived at Perma CC in October of 2016:

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BNZ branch Tauranga opens - July 1964

Note:This article and cover posted here with the permission of the Bank of New Zealand