Topic: Harington Street, Tauranga

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Harington Street, Tauranga

Harington Street runs between and parallel to McLean and Hamilton Streets from Cameron Road to The Strand. It’s owes its name to:

Lieutenant Colonel Philip Harington (who) arrived in Tauranga in 1864 as officer in charge of the 1st Waikato Militia. He later transferred to the Armed Constabulary with the rank of Inspector. In the general allocation of farm land to military settlers Harington received a prime site on Cambridge Road still known by the name he gave it, Kelston. (Letters to Bay of Plenty Times, 29 August 1994 by Jinty Rorke.

Who ought to pay for the construction of the street appears to have been a contentious issues in 1879. From the Bay of Plenty Times, 22 April 1879, Page 3 we read;

Paperspast April 1879
Bay of Plenty Times, Volume VIII, Issue 719, 22 April 1879, Page 3

Prior to it’s construction the area had briefly played host to the Native Institute (1860/1861), erected by Revs Clarke and Baker in 1860 and used as an agricultural school. It was taken over by the Imperial troops in Jan. 1864 during the Land Wars as a commissary, and used as a hospital April to June after the battles of Gate Pa and Te Ranga. Mission Institute completed May 1862 for Revs C.Baker and E.Clarke. Used as the first government buildings 1864 to 1874.The house in the background is High Trees, built by E. B. Baker. This building served as the first government buildings.
Native Institute,
The Native Institute as it looked in 1870, when owned by the Norris family.

In 1880 a private Wharf was built at the base of Harington Street, known as Victoria Wharf it was demolished in the 1920s to make was for the railway reclamation (2008 Study, page 17).

Other notable events

  • “ “The Tauranga Record” of 9th November, 1867 advertised that Messrs Way and Morrison had obtained a publican’s licence for the premises known as the Victoria Restaurant and that it would be known as the Victoria Hotel. This hotel was situated in Harington Street “ (Bellamy, 1982 p. 199).
  • In 1876, 10 years after Tauranga’s first lawyer began to practice, two new members of the legal profession (Mr W.B. Hawkins, and Mr O.M. Quintal), set up a practice in the old Bank of New Zealand building on Harington Street (Bellamy, 1982 p. 160).
  • In 1879 a reading room was erected in Harington Street.
  • “A disastrous fire occurred on 31st May, 1881 which destroyed the whole north end of the town covering The Strand and Harington Street (Bellamy, 1982 p. 200).
  • In 1886 the No. 2 School was built on the corner of Cameron road and Harington Street, resulting in a school at both ends of the Tauranga (Bellamy, 1982 p. 135). In 1898 it was moved to a more central site on the corner of Fifth Avenue and Cameron Road.
  • In 1897 a shed was erected on the corner of Willow and Harington Streets to house the fire engine. The words “Fire Engine House” were painted over the entrance (Bellamy, 1982 p. 96).
  • In February 1889 the Bay of Plenty Times offices on Harington Street were moved to the Victoria Chambers in Willow Street, the proprietor saying that the landlord was charging too high a rent (Bellamy, 1982 p. 164).
  • Between 1940 and 1906, a temporary Post Office was established on Harington Street after the old one burnt to the ground (Bellamy, 1982 p. 200).
  • In 1909 plans were made to lay gas pipes along Harington Street, as well as Park, Monmouth, MacLean, Elizabeth, Wharf, Spring, Grey, Durham, and Willow Streets; also Cliff Road, First, Second, Fifth, Seventh, and Eighth Avenues, plus one hundred and fifteen chains on Cameron Road and seventy-three chains on Devonport Road (Bellamy, 1982, p. 76).
  • In 1912 the old Bay of Plenty Times building in Harington Street was converted it into a sample room and upstairs accommodation for staff of the Tauranga Hotel (Bellamy, 1982 p. 170).
  • On Friday, 12th March, 1920 , Mr G.B. Bolt of the Auckland Flying School with Bishop Cleary, the Catholic Archbishop as a passenger, touched down at 9.30 a.m. on the Tauranga Harbour opposite the Victoria Wharf which then stood at the foot of Harington Street (Bellamy, 1982 p. 255).
  • In 1965 the Courthouse on the corner of Cameron and Harington Streets was built (Bellamy, 1982, p. 160).
  • In 1972 new Council buildings were constructed on the corner of Willow and Harington Streets.


  • Bay of Plenty Times Volume VIII, 719, 22 April, Page 3
  • Google Maps (,176.1684133,17z)
  • Bellany A.C. (1982). Tauranga 1882-1982.
  • A 2008 Central Tauranga Heritage Study, prepared for the Tauranga City Council and Environment Bay of Plenty by Matthews & Matthews Architects LTD in association with Jinty Rorke, Jennie Gainsford, Lisa Truttman r. Askidmore & Associates.


This page archived at Perma CC in November of 2016:


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Harington Street, Tauranga

Year:1870, 1900, and 1930

Latitude and Longitude coordinates: -37.6816259,176.16815959999997

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